One month course for a sh400k job

A barista making a cup of cappuccino./COURTESY

Did you know that a Barista is one of the most sought-after and well-paying jobs globally?

James Wanjohi is the co-founder of Worthstart Barista & Mixology Institute, he says a Barista course only takes 30 days.

Speaking to Baraka FM on the Chanja Maswala show, Wanjohi encouraged Kenyans to enroll in Barista courses because of the profession’s wide market.

“A barista is someone who makes and/or serves coffee and coffee-related beverages. A barista should be highly knowledgeable about coffee. During training, the teaching starts from the farm to the different types of coffee, and how to brew them. You get the general knowledge of coffee from tree to cup,” said Wanjohi.

The Barista course includes General Coffee Knowledge, Milk Frothing and Latte Art Techniques, Coffee Roasting Basics, and Sensory Basics among others.

“We teach you grading of coffee, teach you how to use your sense of smell to know the quality of coffee,” said Wanjohi.

The institute does not only teach how to make coffee but also teaches Kenyans the value of Kenyan coffee. Wanjohi says the value at which Kenyan farmers sell their coffee beans per bag is way less than what foreign countries sell the same bags for.

“Kenyan coffee is the best in the world. We have come to realize that our farmers do the donkey work and do not benefit from their coffee as much as foreigners selling our coffee abroad. A bag of coffee beans sold at $100, can be sold six times that price abroad,” said Wanjohi.

“We have people in Japan and South Korea calling daily saying they want to buy Kenyan coffee,” he added.

Job Opportunities For Baristas

There is a broad market for baristas including hotels (local and international) and cruise ships.

According to Wanjohi, the institute helps students get employment once they are done with the course, at an extra fee.

“We have two groups of people at Worthstart Barista & Mixology Institute. We have a group that is solely responsible for seeking employment opportunities for our students both local and international,” said Wanjohi.

“Currently, we have around 120 people who are supposed to go to Qatar in March. We have also partnered with hotels where we provide interns and staff,” he added.

According to Wanjohi, a barista’s salary in the local hotels ranges from sh.40,000 to 80,000. Five-star hotels pay more than sh.100,000.

“Internationally, the pay is higher. For example in London, the salaries range from sh.480,000 to 800,000,” said Wanjohi.

He urged those seeking employment to enroll in the one-month-long course.

“Worthstart is the first school in Africa to promote/elevate the barista business and educate Africans on coffee. This is the shortest course in the world, you study for 30 days, and on the 31st day you are at work,” said Wanjohi.

The institute has branches in Kenya, South Africa, Uganda, and Tanzania.

“Our main branch is at Pension in Nairobi, the Mombasa branch is at GPO. We also have a branch in Nakuru. Our certificates are internationally recognized, that means once you have a certificate from Worthstart then it will open the employment doors for you,” said Wanjohi.

Meanwhile, Wanjohi has urged the government to invest in the barista field saying it will help deal with unemployment in the country.