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Onyinyechi Anozie: Is There Really Income or Happiness for the Nigerian Youth?



Mummy, I want to be a nurse,” I said to my mum while wearing my white singlet and pant as she dressed me up for school. She said, “Get above 300 in JAMB and you will have it.”

Yes, 300.

My mum had that much faith in me. I am pretty sure I am not the only who has done this, once with a smile telling their parents they want to be something in the future.

At age 13, it became 200 in JAMB and all will be sorted. You will get into the university, graduate, land your dream job to change your country and even save lives.

A few years later you actually get into the university and gbam! Your first strike hits you and you are at home for weeks that turn into months. You turn on your TV and see government workers on strike because they’ve not been paid and guess what is trending on Twitter? #NoJobsforNigerianYouths.

At this point you realize that life starts after your 200 JAMB score. With all of this going on, I am constantly asked: “Is there still happiness and income for the Nigerian youth?” I am talking about the kind of happiness that comes with peace and the income you can pay tithe from without checking if thunder will strike you. I asked my friend who lives abroad the question and he said a big no. I cannot blame him, but I was brought up to believe in things, situations and people instead of run away. So I am here to tell you: there is happiness and income for the Nigerian youth. But how can we get there? Let’s see

Keep yourself alive
Suicide will not help. I don’t care who you are, your age, where you are, your background, level of education; the world needs you and that brain of yours alive. The greatest issue is that we tend to look up to presidents and ministers for something to happen but all we need to look at is that person in the mirror. This might sound like the last lecture you attended but it is the truth. Nigeria needs you to be alive. Don’t be fooled by the saying that, There are no worries on the other side. So keep yourself alive no matter how hard the situation might be. You won’t be like this forever.

Don’t look beyond the problem, look at it
I am very sure we’ve heard, Look beyond what you are facing and how the country is. Nigeria will get better, but how? Look at the issues we are facing today and bring a solution. See that there is joy and money in solving problems. If we keep looking the other way when problems come, we just will remain stagnant and unfulfilled.

Spend your resources wisely
I am sorry to say but this is where we all fail. We are too focused on “having fun.” That is why if you give some youths millions today, in a few years it would have reduced to nothing. We are quick to spend, slow to save and ignorant when it comes to investing. The same thing applies to time. Yes, you are young and want to live life, but think of what is best for you right now. Fill your head with the right knowledge so it can produce solutions. Go for seminars, meet great people and network. Putting yourself in the wrong place and spending your time on the wrong things will never get you to where you want to be. Those bottles only take from you and never give you anything. They take the little income and give nothing back in return, not even happiness.

Live ready
Now, I am not talking about ready in terms of dying anytime but live ready for opportunities. You want to work for an oil company but you do not have a CV or Resume for them. Ever noticed that everyone wants the job until they say “please send your CV”? So you want to work for a company and you run into the CEO in a public place or elevator, do you have a pitch ready? These are things you need to have ready because this thing called opportunity will just be moving up and down without waiting.

Make good use of what’s around you
You are reading this now, so I am sure you have access to the internet. Starting a business online is something I advise because you can still run it while in school without a headache. I run a blog of my own and it does bring some cash. I started it without any capital and now it has grown. There is a whole lot you can do online, just think and do good research before you jump in.

In summary, Nigeria needs you alive and thinking. Things may not be at the best place in the country but if we stop wasting our days we will become better leaders of tomorrow and our children will answer, “Yes,” when asked: “Is there really happiness and income for the Nigerian youth?”


Photo Credit: Dreamstime

Anozie Onyinyechi is a Chemical Engineering student and Blogger who runs She is also the creator of the Student Planner and author of the Art of Being a Student and a Creative. Contributing to the lives of youth and students is her passion and also skincare and fashion.