In the competitive world of higher education, achieving a First Class Honors degree is often seen as a gateway to a prosperous and prestigious career.
Risper Kerubo, a health services management graduate from Kenyatta University, had similar expectations when she graduated in 2015.
Little did she know that her journey would take an unexpected turn, leading her from the corridors of academia to the bustling streets of Nairobi as a successful fruit vendor.
A Disheartening Start
Despite her stellar academic achievements, Risper faced the harsh reality of unemployment.
The promised abundance of opportunities in the health sector seemed elusive, leaving her disheartened and questioning the conventional trajectory of success.
Embracing the Unconventional
Undeterred by the challenges, Risper decided to explore alternative avenues.
Drawing inspiration from her kinsmen in Kisii who thrived by selling bananas and avocados in Nairobi, she saw a potential opportunity in the world of fruit vending.
With meticulous research on sourcing commodities and ensuring fair pricing from farmers, Risper took a bold step and set up her small shop in Nairobi’s Imara Daima estate in 2016.
Challenges and Triumphs
Starting her fruit vending business was not without its hurdles.
Risper faced internal conflicts, grappling with the contrast between her academic achievements and her newfound entrepreneurial path.
The societal perception of a university graduate engaging in seemingly unrelated work added to her challenges.
However, Risper’s resilience and dedication began to shine through as she embraced her role and discovered a genuine passion for the enterprise.
Her daily routine, starting at 4 am in Nairobi’s bustling Wakulima Market, showcases the grit required to succeed. Competing for the best produce, organizing transportation, and diligently preparing the fruits for her customers, Risper navigates the challenges of her labor-intensive job with determination.
Risper’s venture has not only provided for her family’s needs but has also allowed her to save for future expansion.
Despite facing criticism and skepticism from society, including some of her clients and even her own parents, she has persevered.
The societal expectation for a university graduate to pursue a “good job” remains a constant backdrop to her journey.
Entrepreneurial Spirit Shines Through
Risper’s success lies not just in the financial gains but in the transformation of her perception of success itself.
Her story challenges conventional norms, proving that fulfillment and accomplishment can be found in unexpected places.
Her journey reflects the resilience needed to overcome societal expectations and pursue what one truly loves.
Balancing her business with the care of her two-year-old child, Risper showcases the multitasking skills required in entrepreneurship.
Her ability to thrive in a field far from her academic specialization underscores the idea that passion and perseverance can lead to fulfilling paths beyond traditional norms.
A Lesson in Unconventional Triumph
Risper Kerubo’s inspirational journey serves as a poignant reminder that success is not confined to predetermined career paths.
Her story resonates with those who dare to challenge societal norms and pursue their passions.
While she doesn’t dismiss the possibility of returning to her field of study or pursuing a master’s degree, Risper has found unparalleled joy and satisfaction in the fruit vending business.
In a world where success is often measured by conventional standards, Risper’s story stands as a testament to the fact that unexpected places can harbor the most profound successes.
Her entrepreneurial spirit and determination have not only defied societal expectations but have also paved the way for a fulfilling and unconventional career that she now proudly calls her own.