Most often than not, if a Kenyatta University student is not within campus during weekdays, you will find them at Kiwanja Market. Like any market you may know, anything and everything is sold there, and it is also as busy.
Kiwanja Market, popularly known as ‘KM’, is every student’s second home when they are in school. It should not even shock you if a student admits to knowing KM better than they know the campus. It is just that popular amongst students. Now, why would students know KM better than they know their campus? I will tell you why.
In the beginning of every semester, lecturers provide hand-outs to students for their respective units. Some lecturers may choose to do this much later in the semester. However, by providing, I do not mean literally handing every student a copy of the hand-out. The hand-outs are sent out to a few central printing points in soft-copy at Kiwanja Market for the students to print out.
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Nobody knows the importance of these hand-outs like a student in a 700-student capacity lecture who has to come to school early so they can place themselves strategically in the lecture hall where they can grasp enough of what is taught during a lecture. When KU says, “Elimu ni Nguvu”, it means it. You need to be strong enough to handle the hustles within campus.
It is not all work and no play, however. KM is also a nice place to buy time, especially when your lectures are many hours away from each other in a day. There are many gaming and cyber cafes within Kiwanja Market. If you are the kind that enjoys shopping, there is possibly everything you need in KM. Several shopping centres and supermarkets are also available relatively cheap products since the area is heavily infested by students. In fact, a lot of students reside at KM for convenience’s sake. KM is the cheapest and nearest place to live around Kenyatta University. Life is manageable for a student who lives there.
There are also several food outlets at KM if one does not prefer the mess or hotels within the campus. Though the price-range of food in these outlets cannot be compared to the ones at the mess, food is still very affordable and there are more food options than you can find within school.
Kenyatta University is undeniably the coolest university in the country. I mean, where else would you be within school and out of school at the same time? That is exactly what happens when you are at Kiwanja Market. You are not practically in school, but you are not really out of school either. It is very easy to rush to KM just before a lecture starts to print an assignment as you grab your lunch. This is exactly why it is very popular amongst students – because it is a life saver.
By Collins Gathogo
Kiwanja Market is one of the fastest growing shopping centres in Nairobi. A conversation with area residents and students from Kenyatta University revealed that the place changes in weeks. Residents have witnessed many building spring up in the past few years, especially those concerned with providing accommodation to students. Students on the other hand claim that they always find a new facility every time they come from long holiday. We are told that the place used to be the place where cheap goods were sold and low quality food was found. Things have changed; there are classy hotels that look like a place you could find in the city centre. You will also find good clothes being sold, the kind that you would find at an exhibition shop.
The only negative thing about Kiwanja Market is that the town usually comes alive when Kenyatta University students are in session.