MOTHERHOOD EXPERIENCES: A PHENOMENOLOGICAL STUDY OF STUDENT MOTHERS PURSUING BACHELORS AND POSTGRADUATE DEGREES AT THE TANGAZA UNIVERSITY COLLEGE, NAIROBI
RIKA, VICTORIA WAMBUI
MetadataShow full item record
This study sought to explore the experiences of student mothers among bachelors and postgraduate students in Nairobi with a focus on Tangaza University College. The target population of the study was mothers enrolled in bachelor and postgraduate degree studies who self-reported to be having children below 18 years of age. The theoretical basis used was role theory. The study adopted a phenomenological qualitative research design and used in-depth interviews to collect data. The study used criterion sampling and quota sampling techniques using the TUC population to perform in-depth interviews for data collection by the use of an interview guide. The responses were analyzed using thematic analysis. The findings revealed that student mothers were motivated by factors such as self-actualization and better earning capacity leading to a better lifestyle for their families. They encountered role conflicts in managing their many roles as mothers, students, employees as well as employers. This sometimes led to feelings of depression, guilt and anxiety as well as strained relationships when one role suffered. The student mothers were able to balance the many roles by scheduling their time and getting support of other family members to help them to navigate their roles. The study, contrary to the researcher’s perception proved that the student mothers’ journey was not an endless struggle but a manageable one with the right support from the relevant support systems. Policy makers would help this population by coming up with timely programs that take into account their many roles.