“I came back to Carleton and the Institute of African Studies with big aspirations. As a student majoring in Economics and minoring in Statistics and a prior background in Psychology, I often get asked why I chose African Studies for a double degree. My answer is simple: I was curious about researching the continent, and there was nowhere else in Canada with a stand-alone Institute. To start the process of achieving this goal, IAS was the best fit.

During my time at the institute, I was always encouraged to take risks and make an impact. Two of my most significant accomplishment exemplifying this are getting my paper accepted at the CAAS conference and the successful research conference I co-hosted in 2018. Before declaring my major in African Studies, I had a vague idea of what I wanted to use the degree to do. With the help of my professors and administrators, I navigated my way through the program, and in the process, narrowed my interests. The program is like a journey starting from the pre-colonial era, working your way through till present. It also offers courses like AFRI 3900, which encourages students to gain real-life experience as it relates to African studies. I was fortunate enough to work as a research analyst for IMPACT in Ottawa, which helped me hone my research skills.

In October 2018, we successfully hosted the Institute of African Studies research conference, where eight students from around the world presented their research paper. This conference deepened my interest in studying environmental issues in Nigeria.

Indeed, not only was I encouraged to push my boundaries, I was fully supported to do just that. Since completing the program, I have been accepted to the University of Oxford to continue my research in the African (Area) Studies department. I will go on to pursue my Ph.D., focusing my research on environmental issues; climate change, in Nigeria. The hope is to continue in academia and also work as a policy advisor.

I am incredibly thankful to my professors, the administrators, and all the excellent students I met during my time at Carleton. After these past two years, I have become more prepared to face all kinds of challenges and also more motivated to achieve my goals.”