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BellaNaija Celebrates Academic Excellence – Class of 2015: Ogo Oguamanam

BellaNaija.com

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BellaNaija presents “Celebrating You! Class of 2015” We called for submissions of graduating students who had excelled in their course of study. We acknowledge the fact that everyone who has graduated this year is a winner. We, therefore, want to celebrate people who have gone over and above the norm. People who have gotten meritorious distinctions and awards from their institution of study. We hope that you are inspired and we look forward to receiving more entries.

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Kicking off this edition for class of 2015 is Ogo Oguamanam – the best graduating student of her class. Ogo was raised in Jos with her sister and three brothers. She described herself as a naturally shy person, and she attributes her ‘ridiculous sense of humour’ to her brothers. Ogo graduated from ESC-Rennes School of Business, France with a distinction in her MSc in International Accounting, Management Control and Auditing.

Coming from a family of brains, Ogo admitted that she has always been envious of her sister’s brain! “Like how can one person be so smart though? Lol!. I really believe that she made me want to be the best that I can be in whatever situation.

It’s such a delight to start the 2015 series with such astounding brilliance. We hope you are inspired by her story, as much as we were.

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The MSc journey
I always wanted to go back to school for a master’s degree. After becoming a chartered accountant and working for two years in one of the big four audit firms (the best of them J) I got a full scholarship (after tests and interviews of course) to study in France.

Getting the scholarship was the easy part. Making the decision to accept it was one of the hardest I’ve ever had to make. I mean, I had a very good job where I excelled and learnt A LOT. I had a small but nice and cozy apartment. I had my friends… I just had a life that I thoroughly enjoyed. Some people were of the opinion that a Masters degree wasn’t really necessary for one who wants to practice as an accountant.

Some of my aunties were all about ‘oh you’ll be gone for a year, meaning no prospect of (an Igbo) husband for at least another year? (Yes I’m Igbo, every conversation I’ve had in the last 4 years with my relatives end up as ‘marriage talk’).

I, however, committed everything to God and just reflected on how effortless and stressless the whole scholarship process went and realized that it was in God’s plan for me. I remember the night I made the decision, I thought to myself ‘I’m going to do this, but on the condition that I have to give it my all, it has to be worth it’.

Challenges
Schooling in France was wayyyyyy different from what I was used to as a student in Nigeria; the many papers I had to write with the extensive research involved. Plagiarism is a very big deal, so a lot of reading and understanding had to be done in order to present the subject in your own way, I remember the mini heart attacks I had whenever my papers went through Turnitin.

Ahh… the countless presentations I had to make; particularly challenging for me were group presentations. For one, I was the only native English speaker in my group so I had the responsibility of combining every member’s part and ensuring that it was grammatically correct. Further, I was really a ‘study-alone’ type of person. Having 3-4 other people in my space, throwing their ideas at me was very disconcerting at first; but I quickly learned to adapt and found that I actually gained a lot from these sessions.

The semester was great with me having perfect/near perfect scores in tests and assignments and papers.  I was pretty confident writing the main exams, hello 5. GPA!!!

When the results finally came out in the 2nd semester, I found out that I had 2 B grades that put my GP at 4.7 and second in the class. Luckily we are allowed to view the exam papers and when I saw one of the B graded papers, I was absolutely shocked at the score I got on one of the questions!

Not to go into the whole long story, after meeting the professor, it was agreed that truly I didn’t deserve that low score, in his words ‘I really don’t know why I gave you that.’

The process of changing the grade was too tedious and I was advised against it. I was sort of depressed for a while and it affected me in a way that I didn’t study as much as I was used to, because I just thought: ‘what’s the point anyway’.

A few weeks to my final exams, my sister graduated from Imperial College London (she graduated the best in her class, Dean’s prize and all) so I was there with her and my Mom. I remember the joy and pride my mom felt seeing my sister receive her prizes and I was more depressed that I may not get that. I think my mom felt my pain and later that evening as we were taking a walk she held me and told me how proud she is of me and how great I am, that I should never let any setback hold me down, rather I should use the situation as a push to be greater. She told me to forget about the past and not pursue the issue with the professor. I went back to school with my ‘efiko’ shades on and hit the books HARD!

Results of the semester results came out and I got a perfect score. I was over the moon. Even my Program Manager called me to ask how I got A grades in all courses as that semester was particularly hard for most students, I told him ‘it’s all God’

Having A grades in my final dissertation and the internship program put my CGPA at 4.9 (distinction baby!) and put me ahead of the class.

The graduation ceremony held on June 6th, where I gave a speech as the ‘major’ of the class. It really was one of the most exciting days. The only downside to all of this is that my Dad didn’t get to experience it with me. He would have been too proud.IMG_7274

Lessons learned
I really learned the power of prayers and just believing in God. Coming back home, after my internship, not having a job for about two months, I started to feel like I had wasted my time, like was it really smart giving up my job for this, but through it all, though hard, I kept my faith and trusted that all will be well. I’m alive, I’m healthy, I have my amazing family and friends, I have a job, and although I’m not at the place where I want to be, I know that everything will work out and all will be worth it!

Having two B grades (All others were A grades) in the first semester) I resolved to working even harder to improve in the second semester. I got a perfect score (a 5. GPA) and this put me on top of my class. With an A grade in my final dessertation and another A in my internship program, I graduated with a CGPA of 4.89 – the highest not just in my class but in the school. The graduation ceremony was held this past weekend where I was honored with an award and gave a speech as the best graduating student (Major) in my class.

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If you want to be part of this inspiring and amazing feature or if you know someone who is part of the Class of 2015 who should be featured here, please send an email to features(at)bellanaija(dot)com. We look forward to reading from you and sharing your academic excellence.

49 Comments

  1. MIA

    June 12, 2015 at 2:16 pm

    Kudos dear… @Bella this is lovely.. We should more articles like this not everyday Flying billionaire wife/KUWTK…

  2. stefini

    June 12, 2015 at 2:18 pm

    to know book sweet o!! now this makes me wanna go back to school and read…….o how i wish i put head for book,lmao…….Congrats Ogo…@ BN this is a very nice idea,not everything should be about fashion,lol

  3. Ehiwarior

    June 12, 2015 at 2:26 pm

    Congratulations dear…greater heights in Jesus name.

  4. Babytohcute

    June 12, 2015 at 2:28 pm

    I thank God for you. Congrats. As for me, school don do me. I leave the rest of the schooling for the unborn kids (dis one school fees don dey increase). All parents and those on the way, The Lord is your muscle.

  5. Nuna

    June 12, 2015 at 2:30 pm

    NIGERIANS!!!! Always ahead, wherever we go.
    Congrats girl, the sky is ur starting point

  6. nwa papa

    June 12, 2015 at 2:30 pm

    Congrats! Beauty and brains….

  7. oyindee

    June 12, 2015 at 2:46 pm

    Congrats girl!!!!

  8. Olatundun Williams

    June 12, 2015 at 2:47 pm

    Ogo is simply amazing, beautiful, humble and oh so smart. Well done. You make Sahara PROUD!

    • Ogo

      June 12, 2015 at 2:57 pm

      Awwww thank you so much @olatundun … I really appreciate that

    • Wumi Bee

      June 14, 2015 at 11:31 pm

      Congrats Ogo! Wow! From my lil interactions with you I could tell you’re smart, but this even exceeds my expectations

      Don’t think I’ve earned the right to, but I’ll say anyway I’m proud of you 🙂 Keep being d great person that you are dear. The (Igbo) hubby will come and he’ll be better than your wildest dreams. Amen

      XXX
      WumI (Landbridge)

  9. Emilomo

    June 12, 2015 at 2:49 pm

    Well done dear!!! We are so proud of you!!! May God continue to elevate you 🙂

    • Ogo

      June 12, 2015 at 2:59 pm

      @emi Amen! thank you so much

  10. Tomi

    June 12, 2015 at 2:51 pm

    A big congratulations to you.
    I got a bit teary as I read the part where you had a talk with your mum. Such sweet words from her.

    Congratulations to your sister as well. Imperial is a top Uni.

    withtomi.com

  11. sonia oguamanam

    June 12, 2015 at 3:07 pm

    My darling inlaw we are so proud of you. We have to throw a bash for you oh haba

    • ogo

      June 12, 2015 at 3:30 pm

      LOL! yes please!! you just tell me when to bring myself! thank you sissy! :*

  12. liberty

    June 12, 2015 at 3:10 pm

    #lovely

  13. Jane Public

    June 12, 2015 at 3:10 pm

    Very, very, very, well done. I hope you came home or at least left behind, a gorgeous French man, just so that you can stick it to your Aunties. Lol.

  14. Abiodun

    June 12, 2015 at 3:11 pm

    Congratulations, Ogo! I love academic excellence!!

  15. Nkemdilim

    June 12, 2015 at 3:15 pm

    Wow!
    Nice one dear. I am soooooo proud of you.
    wow!

  16. sola kola-amodu

    June 12, 2015 at 3:15 pm

    I don’t see shyness around here.
    But yerr,i see d brains…..thumbs up, my coffee/power horse addict…lol

  17. Anne

    June 12, 2015 at 3:17 pm

    Congratulations darling!

  18. Alex

    June 12, 2015 at 3:19 pm

    I think I enjoy reading such columns. Super lady, super smart, super pretty and super witty! Congrats Ogo!

  19. Dipo

    June 12, 2015 at 3:24 pm

    Big congrats Ogo. You still owe me the CL stuff though. Won’t forget that.

  20. I said..,

    June 12, 2015 at 3:28 pm

    I am impressed!!! Congrats dear?

  21. atlstyle

    June 12, 2015 at 3:33 pm

    Academic excellence does not guarantee success in life, nigerians too fool of themselves and qualification, go ask bill gate and the lot of them. ..book work is different from real world…and God uses the foolish to disgrace the wise

    • kemi

      June 12, 2015 at 5:55 pm

      Bill Gates, Steve Jobs and mark Z were all admitted to top universities because they are smart and are qualified.
      Of course to run their institution they wont recruit people like you
      cos they know the law of probability

      First apply and get admitted to a top Uni
      Then show me your admission letter and then drop out
      i will doff my hat for you
      till then go and drink rat poison

      Meanwhile Ogo, well done
      I know you not but I really like your achievements
      The humility is obvious

    • Esther Louis

      June 12, 2015 at 6:48 pm

      Wetin this one carry himself come do for here? They are congratulating somebody for efforts and hardwork, you carry your generational negativity to obstruct the smiles of others. Is it someone’s fault that you don’t have enough sense to know when to contribute or not? If academic excellence (AE) does not guarantee success in your family’s life, does that mean others should follow your family’s footsteps? Some people still have the goodwill to see the positive side of life than to dwell in their failure. Learn from them! FYI: She is successful and AE worked in her favor. Please Park well or drive on the side lane! U re not important!

    • Sandy

      June 12, 2015 at 7:46 pm

      Please atlstyle if you cannot celebrate success keep your bile to yourself. FYI academic excellence is a springboard to success regardless of your chosen career. The guys and girls in music, tech, entertainment, fashion and many other fields who are super successful are people who got an education and in many cases were really book smart too so this your example no hold water. In summary park go one side! Thank you.

      Esther Louis you have spoken my mind!

      Ogo you know there’s no one prouder of you! Perfect example of what you can achieve with hardwork and determination. #sistaoflife

  22. ardnas

    June 12, 2015 at 4:09 pm

    congrats dear. its good to know you didnt give up on your dreams of earning a masters degree and most importantly is that you made the best out of it. plus you made Nigerians and Nigeria proud#NigeriansBeDoingGreat things…proud of U!

  23. jizzle

    June 12, 2015 at 4:14 pm

    Bless! Congrats and more grease to ur elbow

  24. Queen O

    June 12, 2015 at 5:23 pm

    What kind of irrelevant misplaced and entirely unnecessary comment is this???
    FYI, brains like hers, combined with her determination (did you read about her comeback after the 2 Bs?) and faith in God is definitely a recipe for success.
    You should be thoroughly ashamed of your comment.

  25. Queen O

    June 12, 2015 at 5:28 pm

    Oh yeah, congrats Ogo! I don’t know you, but I’m so proud of you.
    I will be starting a PG degree later in the year and your story has just inspired me to go harddd like never before.
    Hopefully, in approximately a year and half, I’ll have a testimony like yours.
    Thank you and God bless.
    Here’s to greater achievements! 😀

  26. Babatunde

    June 12, 2015 at 6:07 pm

    Ogo, this is quite amazing! Congratulations on this great accomplishment.

  27. Dr.N

    June 12, 2015 at 6:16 pm

    Awesome! Blaze on girl!

  28. Peaches77

    June 12, 2015 at 7:55 pm

    Congratulations Ogo! Keep shining!

  29. ChiChi

    June 12, 2015 at 8:21 pm

    Awwww Ogo was very nice to me in CBN. Wow! Congrats girl! Way to go! Thank God for you!

  30. Proud SL chic

    June 12, 2015 at 8:49 pm

    Saint Louis girls repping… Congrats Ogo! Your best is yet to come!!

  31. dee

    June 12, 2015 at 8:56 pm

    Your story is motivating.
    congratulations. Am proud and happy for you.
    I hope to have a super testimony too.
    God bless you more

  32. Abena

    June 12, 2015 at 9:34 pm

    Bella! This is the type of stories we want to see here on the regular! Not all these baby mama’s stories that doesn’t inspire or motivated us in anyway.
    She is beautiful and intelligent… Kudos.
    Your family must be proud.

  33. Hawtspott

    June 12, 2015 at 10:37 pm

    I feel you babe cos am also rocking my academic boat…almost there but already exhausted. Today am inspired by your story and will have to push my dissertation to retain my distinction. Congratulations girl!!!

  34. nene

    June 12, 2015 at 11:08 pm

    but why cover your age? be proud of your age and your achievements ogo

  35. princess

    June 13, 2015 at 2:55 am

    Really inspiring story. Congratulations Ogo! God’s blessings in all you do

  36. Ba

    June 13, 2015 at 8:42 am

    Plagiarism is a huge deal in many top naija school. No thesis is perfect is the norm. Write your own and give credits to whom is due. Congrat girl

  37. yeah

    June 13, 2015 at 9:24 am

    Welldone ogo,we are proud of u.More greater height for u gurl

  38. Mom

    June 13, 2015 at 2:07 pm

    What will I say except 2 thank GOD 4 making me d vessle. Am eternally grateful! My precious dota,was actually being too humble wt her academic fortunes (achieved thru deliberate self determinatns, denials but iced wt GOD’s favour). I say dis 2 d glory of GOD n 2 shame of those who are averred 2 positivity!. Goo Goo, as I fondly call her, is my last born. We lost our daddy, my lovely husband, (unexpectedly) at d peak of her academic struggles, yet, she persevered n rose above all d challenges,: Graduated tops in her 1st Degree, topped it up wt an ACCA Professional cert. while serving and then this! Haba! Who am I that I will not “yaddah n shaddah” 4 BABA GOD. Father, am grateful. YOU know now???. So, anyone who does not appreciate dis………. Well, let GOD b d rewarder. Sweetym, babym, GooGoo mummy, I love u n am proud of u, anytime, anyday. And like I slways say n pray, d gd LORD, who started dis, shall never lv u in d middle of nowhere! HE must accomplish ALL of HIS purpose for u IMNJ. Amen. Mummy4life.

    • polypoly

      June 13, 2015 at 4:09 pm

      yassss mommy!!!! tears of joy over here sha….ughhhh see me crying…..ughhh, all this make up gone to waste. lol!!!

      congrats ma, we are proud of ur dota too oh…..
      ogo oya, time to find husband oh, so mommy can tie george wrapper and dance well. lol!!! kiddding!! goodluck sis

      werkkkkk booo!!!! come on thru and get this award for Bellarific chics slaying on the international scene…yassss!!!!!

    • Morolake

      June 15, 2015 at 11:35 am

      Aww mummy dearest, your comment brought tears to my eyes. You remind me so much of my mum, this is the sort of comment my mama would post (She has gone to be with the Lord now). You are one amazing mummy. God bless you MA. I see where Ogo gets her strength from. Congratulations Ogo.

  39. Moyosore

    June 13, 2015 at 2:09 pm

    This is highly inspiring, Congratulations and wishing you the best in all that you do.

  40. Dee

    July 23, 2015 at 2:05 pm

    I’m I surprised?! Nope! This babe is HOT, in all ramifications. Great brain, Great look, Great attitude! The great journey has just begun gal

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