The Enduring Excellent Mind

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There is no magic in achieving success in life than pushing yourself to greatness. Irrespective of your background and what life throws at you, get up and live that life you envisage. Today, we have a scholar in the house who has not allowed life to dictate for him but turned the wheel of change to his favour. Let’s get to meet him.

Welcome to honournaija_blog, can we meet you??

I am excited to be here, thank you very much. My name is Ige Oluwasegun, I graduated in the year 2019 from the Federal University of Technology Akure, Ondo State with a bachelor’s degree of Technology in Microbiology. I am an ERASMUS scholar currently undergoing my International Masters in Marine Biological Resources IMBRC) and my specialization is Marine Biotechnology which is coordinated at Gent University, Belgium.

Wow, Fantastic. What inspired you to seek for scholarship and to study outside Nigeria?

Firstly, I believe God has given me strength to succeed in academics and this inspired me to push myself to excellence. Secondly, the educational system in Nigeria is not quite excellent, with so many limitations in the structure, furthering my Masters in Nigeria will not afford me the kind of exposure I want. Lastly, I will say motivations from mentors. My mentors inspire me every time, even when I am quite confused and all, their encouragements were my wings to fly.

Oh, I love that you know your strength. Were you rejected?? how did you handle it? share your experience.

Smiless, I had some rejections from different scholarship bodies. I was devastated, felt bad and coupled with the stress involve, I didn’t feel like applying again. But the questions I do ask myself is that “if I give up, how will I get it“? The best is to keep myself encouraged and keep pushing. Sometimes, when I receive the rejection letters, I sing hymns and weep.  Looking at it, the rejections were to my advantage. I drew strength from them and I channeled it to wining a scholarship that worth more than the others that rejected me.

I am thrilled with the ‘hymn singing part’. How many scholarships did you apply for before hitting the jackpot?

I started my applications in the month of March,2020. I applied for Mastercard Foundation Scholars program, I applied to a US school, I applied for Edu-scholar, I applied to United Kingdom schools but there was no funding. I received rejection from Mastercard and US school. When I applied to the ERASMUS program that I am currently on, I was rejected at first but mercy spoke for me, I received a second email that I have been selected. That was how I got it.

I tap into the Mercy-seat too. Did you feel excited after getting one? Share your experience.

Yesssssss, I can’t explain how excited I was.!! On that fateful day, I was on my way to church when I received the email of selection. On my return home, I went into my room and locked my door; I sang the hymn I usually sing when I receive a rejection email. I was dancing and singing and appreciating God. I spoke with my mentor, Scholar Ademola Aiyenuro who was a masters student at University of Cambridge, we rejoiced together. It was like a dream to me.

An exciting feeling it was. From your experience, what are the needful things to be done before securing a scholarship.

I usually receive calls, text messages from applicants requesting for scholarship links but most of them are unserious. You have to be very serious. Scholarship applications is not what you take with levity hand, it requires tenacity and seriousness. Knowing your strength is very important too. Build your CV profile, engage in publications, online courses as well. Make sure you have your requirements and good recommenders as well.

Nice.!! Any platform that students can get scholarships from? please share.

Personally, I used WhatsApp group pages established for scholarship purposes. I will say join scholarship group pages on WhatsApp and Facebook. Also, you can get scholarship links on LinkedIn and Twitter. I will advise you build your profile on LinkedIn so strong as well, connect with scholars that has won the scholarship that you are interested in. Honournaija-blog too is a place to visit frequently as scholarship links are usually posted on this blog.

Thank you sir. Studying outside Nigeria, how does it feel?? Stressful, tasking or quite with ease? Share your experience.

Smiles, studying outside Nigeria is quite interesting, the teaching system is different and more technical than what I experienced in Nigeria. Here, the lecturer can project 100 slides in 2hours which it’s not something I went through during my undergraduate days. There are a lot of assignments, books to read and research work as well. You have to be able to read personally and understand. Our exams are multiple choice answers which could be confusing but God is helping. The learning atmosphere is conducive in terms of internet availability and working with great minds too. I will love to add this, the percentage of one excelling here is high as long as you are ready to work hard. Nigerians have a winning spirit.

Intriguing.!! What are your words of advice to intending scholarship applicants.??

Don’t give, with time; it will come. Have mentors, pray hard, work hard and keep applying. Be humble enough to follow people that have passed through this journey and it will end in praise.

 

Wooow, thank you so much sir for coming and pouring so much. Yes….handwork is key.

 

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Honour Afinjuomo

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