Person of Interest: Beth Wanyoro, first female Vice President, SOMU

Miss Beth Wanyoro Waitherero is the serving Vice President of Students’ Organization of Maseno University  (SOMU). She is also lucky to be the first female to hold that position in SOMU. The organization has five other elected female leaders. We sought to know more about Ms Beth, the challenges she has faced and her future plans. Here is how the interview went down.

KenyaWest: When did you get elected and for how long will you be serving?

Beth: I got into office in November 2015 and will be serving up to September this year when the union will stand dissolved.

KenyaWest: Have you ever held any other elective post before this and will you go for any after this one?

Beth: In high school, I was elected a club leader and also appointed a peer Counselor. In the not so long future, I aspire to go for an elective political position, probably a gubernatorial seat.

KenyaWest: What challenges did you encounter while campaigning and what we’re your strong points?

Beth: Being a student in a public university, financing my campaign was my greatest challenge but I managed to pull through. Naturally, competing against men led to insults and chauvinism being directed my way. My strongest point was prayer and also I remained focused on women empowerment since there had never been a female vice president before

KenyaWest: What advice do you have for women out there who want to go for an elective position?

Beth: Elective leadership positions never come that easily especially for women. Women should therefore man up and go for any elective posts up for grabs. They should be ready to face all odds and achieve their goals.

KenyaWest: Has the University’s administration ever threatened you individually or as a union?

Beth: No. Never. On the contrary they are very willing to work for and with students in order to deliver quality and all rounded graduates

Beth and her colleagues mentoring girls through "Empower Her Initiative"
Caption: Beth and her colleagues mentoring girls through “Empower Her Initiative”

KenyaWest: What have you learnt or gained from the position you are currently holding?

Beth: I have learnt that not everyone will support your vision and some few people will always want to bring you down. You have to stand up and face them with facts and accept critics and move on. My SOMU counterparts (Winfred Mukhonzo,Robi Joyce and other officials), my friends and I have also come up with “Empower Her Initiative.” It’s an initiative that seeks to provide mentorship to ladies both within school and also around our community. It also focused on student mums in Maseno University  who get together to share their experiences and also encourage one another.

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