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BellaNaija Celebrates Academic Excellence – Class of 2015: Ngozi Ukweni

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.

Ngozi Ukweni graduated with a first class degree in Accounting from Babcock University. She also won the award of most influential female, and the Babcock Alumni Award of Excellence. But here’s something about Ngozi that makes her worthy of being celebrated on BellaNaija: she’s already attained four additional professional certifications, Graduate Member Nigeria Institute of Management (GNIM), a Certified E-business Professional (CEP), Project Management Professional (PMP) certificate She also left a mark behind in her school, as her ‘team’ recently won second place in the Enactus Nigeria Sahara Energy Project.

Here’s how Ngozi describes her side quests: “My fifth year was professional year to write the final stage of my Institute of Chartered Accountant Nigeria Examination (ICAN). It became the last most important 8 months left on campus. I emerged Vice President of the Babcock University Eagle Graduating Class of 2015, which came with higher responsibilities during this time. Excellence, for me, is a way of life. It’s letting the world see your new baby and bottling the pain of child birth inside.”

Convocation

Fear. Unease. Discrimination
I remember that August 16, 2010 when I realized that I had gained admission to a distant school in Ogun state from Abia state where I had lived the most of my life. I knew nothing of this new environment, and it took my parents more than courage to let me go that far as such teenage age. Though, I knew not why but some bliss filled my heart knowing it was Babcock University and not somewhere else.

Sunday, August 22, 2010 was memorable as a freshman. I felt both religious and tribal discriminating glances on most of the faces that I cast my eyes upon. My first Principle Accounting class was a disaster. Although, I chose Accounting as my Field of Study, I knew nothing of it since I didn’t study it in secondary school. I felt really out of place as everyone in class new the basics of debit and credit; and so I wallowed in tears regardless of the crowd around me – something I did most of my first few weeks as a fresh man.

The sting of fear consumed me as family was far and friends were new. At this point, I wanted to just quit Accounting and study Mathematics which was the one skill I knew I had. It took more than a few words of encouragement from my senior colleague (Tutu) to get me rolling. She said, ‘NG, you can create the future that you desire. Make the best of this opportunity.”
Outstanding awardLofty Goals. Achievable Goals
After my first semester, I made a 4.86. I initially did not believe that I was that good; and, by my first semester second year, I made a 5.0. I just really wanted to make my parents proud. It was a challenge for me to stay at the top as I had to make a choice to succeed in this seemingly new area. Initially, the plan was to be the best graduating student by C.G.P.A.

Extra-Curricular Activities
Extra-curricular activities were a part of my university life. A lot came to me as responsibilities. I had become Chief Accountant of my Department, Treasurer of my Chapel, Secretary of the Babcock University Student Electoral Committee and, most memorably, Team leader of Students In free Enterprise (SIFE, now ENACTUS) Babcock University Chapter. My first innovative idea was the conversion of sugarcane to brown edible sugar that I presented at the Babcock University GTBank You Win competition, where I made it to the top Five Finalists. The success stirred up my creative juice as I began several other community projects that recorded successes over time, including the premier edition of the Campus Den Entrepreneurial Competition that made profit for a list of 45 students. Extra-curricular activities were the accelerators that helped me achieve academic excellence because it made me see the need to study more and more, to gain wisdom and not just academic grades in Accounting.
image1

Balancing Academics
I feared that I won’t be able to keep up with the academic success as well as my growing passion for impacting people and my school. The evidences were glaring as I struggled to find my balance, often I had to do late night readings and miss a few classes. My fear came eye contact with me when my C.G.P.A dropped and it felt like I had bitten more than I could chew; but with resilience and determination, I held on.
The ENACTUS Team Leader before me had so much going for her. I doubted that I would be a good leader like her or her predecessor, but when I accomplished moving a team of 10 active members to a sustainable generation of over 60 active members dedicated to being the change that they want to see around them; then I knew that God had a perfect plan for me. Doubt and fear were twins I had chosen to abort as I journeyed through.

The Middle Ground Advantage
My team and I had to work on entrepreneurial community development projects in host communities despite the demanding tight school time tables and deadlines. From project meetings, to meetings with university authorities, to class, to the library, to rural communities, to mentoring, to hanging out with friends, to reading, the web continued. I had learnt scheduling, time management, multi tasking, use of initiative and a lot more. Most importantly, I was growing more than just my academic life. For me, success was more than the academic aspect – I wanted to be an all-round successful personality. This epitome of success I had become through the thickness of self discipline and value. Spiritually, I premiered the Women Fellowship of the Light House Chapel and we had an exciting divine experience. I represented my school at the 19th Nigeria Economic Summit in Abuja: Sustaining Agricultural Business. I made the top 10 Most Influential Women in Babcock University (GistMe Magazine). By November, I led the team that claimed second place at the National University Commission(NUC) Annual Entrepreneurship Week In Abuja where we presented a project on “Combating Youthful Unrest in Nigeria: A Bottom to Top Approach”.

Award from the Major of Accra Hon Dr. Alfred Vanderpuije

Positive Words
John Rockefeller’s words are essential: “I believe in the dignity of labor, whether with head or hand; that the world owes no man a living but that it owes every man an opportunity to make a living”. Opportunities abound. Do not limit yourself! Work hard at whatever your hands finds to do because there will be no action, no thoughts, no knowledge, no wisdom in the world after here (Ecclesiastes 9:10).
If your dream is not big enough to feel your thoughts each morning, then it’s mediocre. If at all you have to sleep with your dream; it is not enough to sleep and dream big, wake up and chase after your dream. Quit the stereotypes. Don’t wait for the change, be the change that you want to see and be value-oriented. Read and put into practice the ‘Seven Habits of Highly Effective People’. You are never too small or too big to do something great! Excellence is my way of life. What is yours?

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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.

53 Comments

  1. Teekay

    August 26, 2015 at 11:48 pm

    Honestly this is one of the best academic atory ve heard so far… Keep it up and congrats

  2. Tunmi

    August 27, 2015 at 12:59 am

    Woah ????????????

  3. Paschal Chikero

    August 27, 2015 at 6:59 am

    This is great and inspiring!

  4. Sweetchy

    August 27, 2015 at 8:43 am

    She’s not just an epitome of EXCELLENCE but an all rounder. I’m really inspired. The Lord is your strength NGOZI UKWENI.

  5. Chi!

    August 27, 2015 at 9:15 am

    Nne well done! am truly inspired! for u to combine all these n still come out wit first class in Accounting!!!! its d Lord’s doing! Congrats Love n God bless u!

  6. Chi!

    August 27, 2015 at 9:17 am

    Witout prior knowledge of Accounting from secondary school!!!!! well done love!

  7. Rashidat

    August 27, 2015 at 9:50 am

    M proud of u my dear friend..cos I remember u went thru a lot more..keep shining.

  8. Myk Ogu

    August 27, 2015 at 10:21 am

    Am privileged to have literally watched you grow through all of this and to have helped too where I could. Never met a girl as phenomenal as yourself, and am so proud of the lady you have become… Indeed, excellence will be an inseparable part of the rest of your life. Congratulations to my sister, my friend and more! *wink*

    • catch me if you can

      June 8, 2016 at 11:24 am

      Dr Ogu…share urs…we are waiting.

  9. Christina

    August 27, 2015 at 11:15 am

    I had a huge smile on my face as I read through your words. You sure are worthy of being celebrated. Thank you for leading SIFE Babcock to her next level. Surely God has blessed you and will continue to bless you. Much love dear

  10. tito Madu

    August 27, 2015 at 11:20 am

    Congrats darling. We are proud of you

  11. Chijindu Omah

    August 27, 2015 at 11:26 am

    You really merited it. Lesson on perseverance to many.
    Wishing you best of luck this can bring to you.

  12. Iyke

    August 27, 2015 at 11:28 am

    Simply Beautiful.

  13. alpha papi

    August 27, 2015 at 11:33 am

    if she had gotten 1st class from one of the fed unis like uniben,unilag,oau or UI ,then i would be impressed ,we all know they just dash dem grades in these private unis…next!!

    • Edy-Bernard Ewoh

      August 27, 2015 at 4:13 pm

      This is the lowest a man can think. Excellence in Ngozi has nothing to do with class grades. How much can anyone read of you? What is your contribution to humanity? What can you be said of. She can do same in your class and in your dream university. You make me feel you are intimidated and jealous. If you have nothing to say, please just shut down and act anonymous.

    • Bitterness alert ^^

      August 27, 2015 at 4:35 pm

      Oh yeah! Please try and tear someone else down so you can feel better about your predicament in life. The way people will jump up to glorify federal Unis when pribate unis are mentioned these days rh, makes me wonder if people have stopped sorting lecturers for first class in federal universities ?. Abeggi

    • Naomi

      August 27, 2015 at 8:27 pm

      She clearly has a 1st class brain for Project management and ICAN too…. Do me a favour please……GERRRAAARRRAAAHIA FOREAL

    • miibee

      August 27, 2015 at 9:08 pm

      Pls wake up; not everybody that finishes with a first class from a private uni was dashed. I bet you that a lot of first class graduates from federal unis can’t perform better than her simply because she is an all rounder when it comes to excellence.
      Don’t be bitter, see the light!

    • fabulicious

      August 28, 2015 at 5:06 am

      Alpha papi,I feel so sorry for you. You clearly have a lot to learn.

    • anonymous

      August 28, 2015 at 1:55 pm

      Dis is immature and unreasonable…if dey really dash these grades, then why is it that not everyone graduates with a first class from private uni’s?????

    • Kay

      August 28, 2015 at 5:26 pm

      LMAO!!! i don’t know why you’re sad, even if they dashed grades, PMP and other certifications she got too were dashed right? don’t be bitter, if you want to be impressed, why don’t you create the impression for your self and don’t base it on the poor girl’s achievement either dashed or merited

  14. The Buttery Hotness

    August 27, 2015 at 11:34 am

    “But here’s something about Ngozi that makes her worthy of being celebrated on BellaNaija: she’s already attained four additional professional certifications…”
    BN, first of all, going to university in Naija and coming out in one piece is not beans. Second, going to university in Naija and graduating with a first class is not beans and stew. Therefore, I think the latter makes her more than worthy of being celebrated on BN…or anywhere else.
    Just saying.

    Ngozi dear, congratulations. Believe it or not, this is only the beginning for you. God will continue to take you even higher. Balancing the rigors of school-work with your (many) extra-curricular activities is nothing short of amazing. Love how you are making an impact on the community and those around you. I’m sure you have truly made your parents, and yourself, proud. I have pinned this page because of your positive words at the end. You are uber inspiring!

  15. Seun salami

    August 27, 2015 at 11:42 am

    Am so proud you my friend

  16. Chinwendu U

    August 27, 2015 at 11:55 am

    Congrats Ngozi. Proud of you… You will always be victorious…

  17. Damsel ukpabi

    August 27, 2015 at 12:09 pm

    Woow… This is wonderful and inspiring, I always knew u had greatness in you. Dear this is just the beginning.. Go into the world and shine, the world awaits ur manifestation.. Love you boo

  18. wow

    August 27, 2015 at 1:37 pm

    Inspiring! Congratulations dear…

  19. Theodore Dickson

    August 27, 2015 at 2:04 pm

    Engee, this is just a tip of the iceberg. Time and space cannot contain it. But your excellent deeds and impact are indelibly written on the sands of time. For me, working with you in the last five years as your Pastor and Class Co-sponsor gives me the ample privilege to say that the world is yet to see the stuff you’re made of. As an Eagle, you have vision, precision, discipline, strength, tenacity, and the boldness that dismantles and crushes every challenge. Your foresightedness, doggedness, and self-discipline place you at serious advantage over your peers, including your teachers. Yet, you are an epitome of humility, morally and spiritually sound. Your managerial abilities are exceptional … “a gentle reminder Sir” lol. What more shall I say: Fly, Engee fly, soar to the sky; mount up wings and triumph without fear because You Are An Eagle. I’ll forever believe in you, Engee. With love from your Pastor.

  20. Sweetchy

    August 27, 2015 at 2:16 pm

    I knew this post will attract less comments as people hardly celebrate other people’s success. Had it been its SEX related topic or the Kardashians, more comments would have been recorded. One thing is sure, don’t expect to be celebrated if you don’t celebrate others.

  21. Adindu Onyinyechi

    August 27, 2015 at 2:54 pm

    Honestly speaking…. Engee is such an exceptional person, it goes beyond these accomplishments. She is such a rare gem and I pray that this light will never stop shinning. Go girl! The world is waiting for you.

  22. Adriel Onwukwe

    August 27, 2015 at 2:55 pm

    Ngozi Ukweni. I’m proud of you dear. This is just the beginning. Cheers!

  23. Sisi

    August 27, 2015 at 3:16 pm

    I’m super proud of U girl!

  24. Dr. Fresh

    August 27, 2015 at 5:45 pm

    My DM!!! Really proud of you!!! Keep soaring dear!!!

  25. demashi

    August 27, 2015 at 7:57 pm

    she didn’t say if she qualified in her ICAN exams!

  26. kate

    August 27, 2015 at 8:17 pm

    Wow… While others are celebrating with her you are talking trash, I guess you’re from a federal university no wonder you lack common sense, why not try going to a private and see if life is easy there

  27. Diuto

    August 27, 2015 at 9:04 pm

    Congrats Ngozi. I celebrate you today and always☺️

  28. miibee

    August 27, 2015 at 9:28 pm

    Ozi baby! As I will always say, anywhere higher/better than greatness is where you are headed. Meeting you is definitely one of God’s blessings to me and I’m more than happy that our paths crossed. You should know that you have been an inspiration, a mentor, an embodiment of excellence and a lamp to me.
    you are limitless……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..
    Keep soaring b! :* :* :*

  29. demashi

    August 27, 2015 at 9:29 pm

    @kate….not sure if your comment was for me. Being a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (FCA) myself, I just wanted to confirm her progress since her comment on the ICAN part was unclear. I hope you understand.

  30. knowles

    August 27, 2015 at 9:39 pm

    U can always count on dis lady 2deliver anytime.. Congrats dear.. Proud of u

  31. Urslla

    August 28, 2015 at 2:54 am

    Am so proud of you Ngozi. You ‘ve achieved soo much within a short while and I celebrate you for it. You are a star.

  32. Kenneth . Gionia. Kuni

    August 28, 2015 at 6:15 am

    Hey Bella, Firstly I want to say Congratulation. I believe that God’s for your Passion to your study. I was so encouraged by your inspirational Encouraging thoughts. I’m currently doing my Diploma study in Business study at Solomon islands National University and I have the passion of pressing towards the same goal that you have achieved.
    Wow its amazing. God Bless you.
    thanks. keep flying like Eagle.

  33. Oyin Oludipe

    August 28, 2015 at 7:17 am

    I love this young woman. You were and still an inspiration. Congratulations, dear Eagle! I am proud to have grown side-by-side with you over those Babcock years. God bless you.

  34. Theodore Dickson

    August 28, 2015 at 10:07 am

    You are indeed a ‘Special One.’ Ride on

  35. EWA GLORIA

    August 28, 2015 at 10:43 am

    I have always been an ardent reader of Bellanaija, but I had never thought about commenting, however, as I read this today, I was drawn to my Keyboard. Ngozi You’re a true inspiration to your generation, am glad to have met you through your predecessor Adegboyega Debbie and through SIFE/ENACTUS, I remember how dedicated and resilient You were even as TL of your SIFE Team, I am proud to say I know You! GOD bless you girl!

  36. Peculiar

    August 28, 2015 at 8:06 pm

    Congratulations Ngozi Ukweni….. I am pleased to celebrate your success !!! God bless you

  37. uzu Micheal

    August 29, 2015 at 12:45 am

    N.G. Wow…. As I read through all, Nothing else comes to my mind but the future Minister for Finance. You are awesome. Miss you.

  38. TA

    August 29, 2015 at 2:23 am

    Congratulations Ngozi and keep on soaring. Kudos!

  39. Lady B

    August 29, 2015 at 7:02 pm

    A BIG congrats to you “baby”the sky will be your starting point. This is just a spring board that will take you to greater heights. You are worthy of celebration my dear. More grace. Keep on soaring.

  40. Ezinne ucheoma

    August 30, 2015 at 2:37 am

    Awwwwww. So proud of u baby. Keep it up. Muaaaah.

  41. Saint Chidi

    August 30, 2015 at 3:50 am

    Congratulation to you NGOZI,I proudly daughter of a Wonderful father.. seeing you grow from your infant i know u will surely soar to this limit,i also know that you are just starting……i wish more of this in days to come.. Hip Hip Hip Hurray

  42. Saint Chidi

    August 30, 2015 at 3:51 am

    Congratulation to you NGOZI,A proudly daughter of a Wonderful
    father.. seeing you grow from your infant i know u will surely soar to
    this limit,i also know that you are just starting……i wish more of this
    in days to come.. Hip Hip Hip Hurray

  43. Tolu

    August 30, 2015 at 11:13 pm

    Ngozi, well done! I’ve met you once and was quite impressed by your leadership skills. You coordinated 600 of your classmates during an empowerment workshop. You should be proud! You will go far, stay humble, passionate, keep learning and never settle for anything less than excellence. Please don’t be bothered by the few critics. I know how hard you must have worked to earn your 1st class because i earned mine too! You are one of the lucky ones that get what they truly deserve. That is how Life should be. 🙂

    As you must have noticed, Life will not be a bed of roses! some will cheer, some will jeer but guess what! YOU have the capacity to soar above life’s noise.

    It is high time Nigerians stopped criticizing based on sentiments- school type, religion, tribe, colour, class/status. We need to come together to make Nigeria a better place, to fix our Education sector, fix our health sector, transportation sector, EVERYTHING.

    We need to see the big picture, It is not US versus US. It is ‘US’ MAKING Nigeria a global giant. TOGETHER.

    I am a proud Babcock Alumnus! Its been 12 years and the light keeps shining.
    Ngozi, welcome to the life after school. See you at the TOP!

  44. Ikwunagu Victor

    August 31, 2015 at 12:51 am

    Congratulations NG…you really deserve it and much more. Indeed the footprints you made in the sand of times started way-back your primary school days. Mayfair was were it all began…shout to all my hommies @Mayfair am proud of you

  45. Demi

    September 3, 2015 at 2:53 am

    yes ooo…ng am so proud of you…it was not an easy journey but the Lord saw you through. Keep shining my friend.

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