Ever since I was a young child, the concern of what my future career would be has hung over me like a bad headache. As a young Nigerian girl, the expectation to have a job that was very prestigious and sought after was very high, so because of this I had chosen various jobs such as lawyer, doctor and pastor (I am very religious okay). So, as I grew older and became more mature, the idea festered in my head and grew as I made decisions on what to study at school.
A few years down the line, I had moved to the UK with my brother and mother and I had been to a couple of schools, moving around every once in a while. I settled in a school in a private school in Bushey for my first two years of secondary school. It was a girls school and I really enjoyed my time there, I met wonderful girls that I’m still friends with today (you know who you are aha). Unfortunately, after my second year, my family encountered a few problems and I had to relocate to a state school. This wasn’t a problem for me as I enjoyed moving around and meeting new people but leaving friends that I had gotten really close to was a big struggle for me as it had been when I moved to the UK from Nigeria.
This new school that I had moved to was a mixed school in St. Albans which was my first experience of being in a co-ed school since primary school. I was excited because this school offered more in terms of subject choices than the old school did and that was when I got my first taste of engineering. Now engineering to me had always been a guy thing that various of my mother’s male friends were really good at. I had never thought about it because of the stigma around females doing engineering. However, in year 9, I had a very terrible first experience in the workshop and nearly broke a really expensive machine – this had actually happened on more than one occasion, whoops! Anyway, because of the mistakes that I had made in the workshop, I was laughed at a lot especially by the boys. This motivated me to do better and work much harder and by the end of the term, I had finished with one of the best products made in the class. Bear in mind that I had never worked on these machines as they were not available in the school and so the rest of the class had a 2 year headstart. I remember my teacher joking about how he’d hoped to never see me in his workshop again but to his surprise, there I was the next year, ready and willing to work twice as hard as any other person in the class.
My Engineering teacher was a legend. He may not have been the best teacher in the school, but he pushed me harder than anyone else because he realised my potential and that’s what makes him a legend in my eyes. I worked the hardest in his classes and at this point I was still focused on trying to make it as a doctor so a majority of my attention was on subjects like Maths, Chemistry and Biology. Around this time, I met a friend who encouraged me to join the ATC (Air Training Corps). This was a huge motivation in my life as it opened my eyes to the various types of engineering that are available as well as the different places I could work. I loved it. With this new found realization of my love of Engineering, I started to do more research into what I’d like to do after my GCSE’s. The hardest part of the whole process was convincing my mum of this sudden career change I had made. Whilst my mum is very supportive of everything I do, she wanted a daughter with a pHD which was a big thing for Nigerians. She didn’t understand my love for engineering at that point but I worked hard to show her how passionate I was about it. She finally buckled but every once in a while she’ll throw in a joke about how I should apply for medicine at university. Hilarious mum.
So, I had finished my GCSEs and was on the way to deciding the next steps in my life. I decided to move away to boarding school to study Maths, Chemistry, Physics and Product Design. This brings us to now, I have completed my first year of college and am well on my way to becoming a more independent women as well as becoming an engineer. At this point, I have gathered the help of pastors, friends, engineers and mentors to help me with this process. As I mentioned earlier, I am very religious and I believe very strongly in God and that he has a purpose for me in this world. This belief has pushed me to wanting goals that many people believe to be foolish or impossible but as it says in Philipians 4:13 – “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”. Essentially, I can do whatever I put my mind to with God by my side.
The idea of getting noticed by other Airline companies has been nagging me for ages, I’m not going to lie, I need all the help I can get. I need to do research, meet more people already in the field and get noticed a lot more. But it will all come together in the end, I know it will. Right now this blog is for documenting my progress in achieving my dreams as well as to empower other women like me to strive for goals that other people might call foolish or impossible.
So, here I am now with a new found hunger for success. I will be an engineer. I will be successful. I will own an airline company and I will show everyone that I was not foolish and it was never impossible.
“Follow me on my journey of more success.” – DJ Khaled