20something profile: Edikan
I grew up in Nigeria with parents who got their degrees from the United States. Education in my family was not an option; it was the only option. I moved from Nigeria to the US in 2001. I know what you want to ask…yes, it was a huge culture shock. The America I saw watching Sound of Music was totally different. I thought Julie Andrews would pop out at any time to sing. I continued my education from middle school to college here in the states.
College was a shocker for me because I didn’t know which major to choose. I changed my major two times. My college journey was the hardest and most trying time of my life. I am a hard worker; I don’t take opportunities for granted and certainly not my education. The part that hurts the most was changing my major the second time.
The first time was intentional without any consequences; however, the second time wasn’t that easy. Before I changed my major the second time, I had a meeting room with some of my professors and the head of that major’s department. Indirectly, they told me I was smart but then stupid at the same time…blah, blah, blah (I zoned out here). I couldn’t believe what was happening to me. I was only one semester away from graduating with this degree, and these people are telling me to do what?
Life got real. I went into this phase of self-doubt from 2011-2012. I was hurt because I saw failure regardless of my hard work. I was at the lowest; I saw myself in the car holding my mom’s hands in tears. Changing your major is very easy for you, but as an international student, the financial implication of staying longer in school was scary. What do you think I did?
I cried and cried, but then I got up, changed my major and fought for my education. It’s good to face reality, but don’t internalize the negative things people say. If you have to crawl to accomplish your goals, crawl! Move! Do something. The lowest times on my road to getting my education taught me never to quit! Despite the emotional, financial, and psychological pain, I persevered and I spent a lot of time with God.
You have to persevere! Never accept defeat. The best way to fight for the future you want is to persevere against all odds. Challenges will come. What will you do? Quit? NO, NEVER! Welcome the challenges and persevere. I have no respect for people who quit. I don’t care how bad you failed. Get up; try again. I am a graduate today and on my way to graduate school because I trusted God and persevered. With God on your side, anything is possible.
Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength”