To become a journalist in Kenya, there are a couple of steps to follow but not as many as when one intends to become a Lawyer.
- Step 1
Join a good high school and ensure you get good grades in KCSE, particularly English and Mathematics. You have to be extremely good in reading, speaking and writing. The minimum general grade you should score is a C+ if you intend to pursue a degree in journalism or at least C –(Minus) for a diploma in journalism.
Enroll for a diploma or degree course in journalism at a Kenyan college/university. The best college/University to join are:
- Kenya Institute of Mass Communications which is located in South B
- The University of Nairobi
- Daystar University
- Maseno University
- Kenyatta University
- Multimedia University of Kenya
You can also start from a Certificate in Journalism and upgrade over time.
The minimum grade for a diploma course is C- while for a certificate is D and for a degree course, you have to score at least a C+
Most universities have module ii and regular positions. For regular program, the vacancies are limited which means that you have to score good grades to be admitted. To be safe, ensure that you score at least a B+ in KCSE general grade, at least B+ in English and Kiswahili. For a parallel course, even a C+ will get you admission to any university for a journalism course.
- Register with media council of Kenya
There are rules and regulations that govern journalists in Kenya, these rules are set out by the Media Council of Kenya,CAK or Parliament. As a journalist, you are confined within the regulations.
Before you start practicing ,you have to register as a journalist with the Media Council of Kenya. You can register while you are a student or after completing your studies. There is a fee to be paid to the council.
- Local Journalist: Ksh 2,000
- Foreign Journalist: Ksh 10,000
- Foreign Journalist (Short Term – 3 Months): Ksh 5,000
- Student: Ksh 300
After paying the fees and presented your academic papers, the council will list your name among accredited journalists in Kenya. You will then be allowed to practice.
Bloggers and journalists are different groups. While a journalist can be a blogger, it’s hard for a blogger to become a journalist unless they hold relevant qualifications.
Journalism is one of the most rewarding careers in Kenya. Majority of the seasoned news anchors and radio presenters earn upwards of Ksh 150,000. Instead of pursuing courses like Education, Economics, Bachelor of Science General, it’s better you become a journalist.