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John Shabaya
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John Shabaya

John studied theology and religious studies, matriculating in 1985. His parents were illiterate, and he tutored himself through to A-Level.

I came from Kenya, from a disadvantaged family background – my parents were illiterate – and I tutored myself up to ‘A-Levels’. It took me two attempts to finally succeed in my endeavour to come to Cambridge as a mature student. Thanks to Fitz for having faith in me through the Director of Studies (then Dr Graham Davies). 

Fitz really supported me as my scholarship fell through before I embarked on my studies. The college gave me a grant, which I combined with donations/grants from Cambridge University and other grant giving organisations that enabled me to realise my dream of studying at Cambridge and becoming a teacher in the UK. In return, I have started a school in Western Kenya as a legacy to my deceased illiterate Mum and also to give back to the community.