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‘My private school education was like going from frying pan to fire’ —  Lasisi

Graduation photo. Ruqayah Lasisi/Edugist
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Ruqayah Lasisi is a first class graduate of Microbiology from Oduduwa University. She emerged as Best Graduating Student, Department of Biological Sciences in the 2021/2022 academic session. In this interview with Edugist, she speaks on her journey through undergraduate studies and her experience as a private university student in Nigeria.

Please share with Edugist, a little about yourself and your background.

My name is Ruqayah Lasisi Motunrayo. I’m 26 years of age and the last child from a family of five. I hail from Epe, Lagos and from a middle-class family striving to be better (by Allah).

What do you enjoy most about your education?

Everything about my education is interesting, medical and pharmaceutical microbiology, and that is because I have passion for anything relating to medicine.

Take us through your journey in school.

Wow! That is a long one but I’ll try to make it a quick one. I was offered admission as a direct-entry student (having a first degree before) to study microbiology. I was expecting the whole journey to be a fun and easy one (the school being a private institution). That was a dream as the journey wasn’t different from the government institution I came from. 

In fact, it was like “from frying pan to fire”. I got to find out that the Microbiology department  of Oduduwa University is one of the toughest but Alhamdulillah, it was worth all the struggles.

Second year, first and second semester were ‘fire’ back to back. I was looking like someone struggling to survive but I was lucky to have had background knowledge of what I came in for. 

After the whole 200 level drama, my third year was smooth until 400 level came with its “brouhaha” again, smiles. Permit me to use the word “brouhaha” as that is what best describes my experience. I struggled with project, lab work, seminar, internal and external defence before my final exams. Alhamdulillah, here I am with the degree.

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Have you had any challenges with a lecturer in the past? How did you sail through?

I did not have any problem with any of my lecturers throughout my stay in school.

Who are specific persons whose contribution you can’t forget in your first-class feat?

My dad is my number one cheerleader. He was always there to push me to do more, he supported me, financially, morally and spiritually. Then my mom, my supervisor (she’s a wonderful chaperone), my head of department (HOD), and myself. 

For students who aspire to graduate with outstanding grades like yours, what would you advise them? Any advice to give to a student who has failed academically and about to give up?

For students who aspire to graduate with outstanding grades, I’ll say “work hard, stay focused, have fun (to some extent) and pray”. To anyone who had failed and wanted to give up, please don’t, as that’s not the end of life. We fall to rise again, you can do better.

After your Bachelor’s Degree, WHAT NEXT?

Go get the Masters!

To get featured on Edugist’s First Class Diary, please send an email.

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