My two years as a VSO volunteer are coming to an end: I’ve accepted a position as a Linux system administrator with a Kenyan-based non-governmental organization, ILRI. I’ll be working with ILRI from August–December, and then we’ll see after that. I’m done with VSO. That means I’m done with teaching. I’m done with snakes and scorpions. I’m done with Tala. I’m moving to Nairobi. I will miss this place but maisha iendelea (life goes on)!
I arrived in Kenya in October, 2007 and was supposed to stay until October, 2009, but I’ve changed my mind. I began looking around for jobs in April or so I think, and I had just about given up hope when ILRI contacted me in June. Before then I hadn’t heard anything from any of the seven positions I had applied for. Nothing! Not even an automated “Thanks for your application” response. I guess the sheer number of applications makes those sort of courtesies impractical? Who knows.
More about the position: ILRI is a research institution, they use clusters of Linux servers to perform complex calculations like DNA sequencing. I gave that description to one person, who then told another person, who then asked me, “Alan, I thought you were against animal testing?” Haha, you’ve heard about companies trying to make drought-resistant crops? Yeah, ILRI does that sort of thing with livestock (most people in developing countries derive their livelihood from pastoralism). I’ll be working with the scientists to make sure their systems are up to date, running well, processes documented, etc.
Stay tuned for more information.