World Scholarship Initiative funds the education of gifted Kenyan students unable to afford a quality education. Our goal is to fight poverty, ignorance, and disease by empowering individuals who have demonstrated an ability to succeed. We have two programs that serve this purpose: our high school program, which awards top students entering high school with full financial support, and our professional education program, which supports high school graduates in degree programs necessary to qualify for a professional career.
High School Program
WSI’s primary program is to fund quality high school educations. We select top ranked students from St. Paul’s Primary School, a public school located in the Bondeni slum. Without our help, these bright students would likely work in manual labor for their entire lives. We send them to well regarded private high schools, where their peers are top students from around the country. Our students do well, consistently ranking in the top third of their class.
The high schools are Catholic-affiliated boarding schools. They are single sex schools: girls attend Christ the King Academy and boys attend Loreto Nakuru Secondary School. The best high schools in Kenya are often boarding schools. By attending boarding schools, our students are placed in a supportive, safe, academic environment that allows them to concentrate on their studies. Were they to remain at home, they might face pressure from family to do work to support the family, might not have a place to study (electric light is a luxury), and would be exposed to the bad influences of slum life on a daily basis. Thus, the students receive the support they need to succeed at that school in addition to attending the school itself.
Professional Education Program
In 2017, WSI will begin a new program for our students who have completed high school: funding a professional education. The first students enter this program will be the first recipients of WSI sponsorship, in 2013. In Kenya, a professional education after high school is required to earn a meaningful income. University liberal arts degrees are uncommon; instead, students choose a professional degree program, such as business or medicine. WSI will require our students to “re-apply” for this assistance, to ensure they understand their responsibility to work hard and learn marketable skills.