Tim Njiru: How KCSE C- Candidate Rose to Become Renowned Pilot After 27 Yrs

  • Photo collage of pilot Tim Njiru pointing at a plane and him with a co-pilot inside a plane
    Photo collage of pilot Tim Njiru pointing at a plane and him with a co-pilot inside a plane
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    Tim Njiru
  • Tim Njiru Muriithi, a pilot and aviation sector expert, scored a C- in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) - a grade that seemed to derail his ambitions.

    Just like other candidates, Njiru was disappointed equally as his parents who had invested heavily in his education.

    Speaking on Friday, January 20, Njiru disclosed his marks irked his parents so much that they wanted him to repeat form 4.

    "When I was young, I wanted to pursue a career in aviation; unfortunately, that was not the case, I got a C- (minus), " Njiru stated during an NTV interview.

    File photo of pilot Tim Njiru posing for a picture.
    File photo of pilot Tim Njiru posing for a picture.
    Tim Njiru

    "Getting a C- was not a good thing as it disqualified me from what I wanted to pursue in life; my parents ordered me to repeat," he added.

    His parents were first disappointed with his primary school performance, especially when he ranked position 45 out of 46 during the indexing exam.

    "My grades from class 1 to class 8 were just average. When I got my index number, I was 45 out of 46. That was my class 8. I then sat my KCPE and got 410 marks out of 700. It was not a good performance," Njiru narrated.

    "That did not earn me a spot in any of the institutions I had already filled up for, meaning I had to go back with my family to figure it out," he added.

    However, Njiru did not repeat high school. Journalism became his fallback plan when he was allowed to enrol at the Kenya Institute of Mass Communication (KIMC) when it was restructured.

    "Kenya Institute of Mass Communication opened a parallel programme and it was at that point that I applied for it and I landed an admission," Njiru insisted.

    After pursuing a course in Broadcast Journalism, Njiru landed his first job at KTN, a Standard Media-owned media station, where he worked for almost one year without pay.

    But his zeal impressed KTN's management, and he landed a TV presenting role.

    "I started off at KTN as a researcher. I worked for a year and eight months without pay. KTN saw my hard work and gave me a role as a TV presenter for a children's programme," Njiru explained.

    But after 27 years, Njiru got an opportunity to pursue an aviation course.  He currently holds a private flying licence but is keen to acquire a commercial license.

    With his private flying licence, Njiru has flown several planes in the country for nearly three years.

    File photo of Tim Njiru (right) with a co-pilot inside a plane's cockpit
    File photo of Tim Njiru (right) with a co-pilot inside a plane's cockpit
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    Tim Njiru