Capital Campus had the opportunity to talk to Bernard Momanyi and understand how Onesha, an online platform connecting College students to potential employers works.
CC: Tell us a bit more about yourself?
BN: I was raised and spent most of my early school years in Kisii.I was lucky to move to Nairobi for my high school and University education. I am currently in my third year at the University of Nairobi studying Economics Statistics. I spend my free time either swimming, hiking or watching Youtube videos on building a successful business. I also take a few online courses on Coursera and Audacity.
CC: What is Onesha?
BN: Onesha is a site that enables students to showcase their skills by highlighting their best school projects or those done for a client or side gig. Most students do not have the necessary industry experience, so allows them to include their school or personal projects to showcase their abilities.
CC: How do you work with employers and universities to help students get jobs?
BN: Through the student’s online portfolios we assist employers easily identify students they can offer internships, short-term jobs, and permanent employment. In addition to this, we profile employers by taking employee testimonials through videos and photos of the work environment.
CC: What do you hope to achieve with Onesha?
BN: We aim to assist over 10,000 students to get internships per month in the next 2 years. We also want to work with universities by providing data on where their graduates gain employment and what skills they need to teach to better equip them.
CC: What led to the idea of Onesha?
BN: Through experience, and from observation young people in miss out on incredible opportunities because the focus is solely on the academic transcripts.So talent, co-curricular activities, and projects are sidelined. Onesha came in to bridge that gap between students, institutions, and employers
CC: Any collaborations you have done so far in regards to improving the platform?
BN: Definitely, we have partnered with several colleges and universities to make this possible such as University of Nairobi JKUAT, BuruBuru Institute of Fine Arts, Talanta Institute and Ashley’s Hair and Beauty academy. We are already working with top employers to help them identify skilled talent from these colleges.
CC: What are the main challenges you have faced so far in beginning, maintaining or improving the platform?
BN: By far, the most significant obstacle has been the lack of funding and also getting our first paying clients.Building a team was also one of the hardest hurdles but now we have a strong team of six people working hard on our vision.
CC: What are some of the opportunities that have come your way through the platform?
BN: Our company was nominated to represent Africa at the Global Entrepreneurship awards in Bangkok, Thailand in May 2016. We have also received support from Safaricom through the Safaricom Appwiz challenge and iLab Africa at Strathmore.
CC: So how can students join onesha?
BN: Visit onesha.co.ke, create an account and add projects you’ve already completed. Use the link to share your Portfolio to potential employers.
This interview was conducted by Capital Campus Correspondent Evon Vala.