PhD degree bagged, what a dream come true for a Nigerian

PhD degree bagged !!!!! What a dream come true!

Story of Nzube Egboluche

I grew up in a community mostly dominated by lower middle class in the Southeastern part of Nigeria. As a young adult, I have always wanted to study in the USA but I never knew how it was going to happen. I studied very hard during my secondary school and excelled in my West Africa Secondary School Certificate Examination (WASSCE). I got admitted into Morgan State University, Baltimore, MD to study chemistry for my undergraduate program. I never made it to the USA to study because my parents couldn't afford the tuition fees. However, I continued my undergraduate program at the University of Nigeria Nsukka and graduated as the best student in the Department of Soil Science.

I never gave up on my study abroad dreams. I applied to many scholarships to fund my graduate program in the USA. I got admitted into Michigan State University in 2015 and was awarded the MasterCard Scholarship to fund my 2-yr master's program in Crop and Soil Sciences. This was the beginning of many and great opportunities I ever wanted. I started working towards achieving my American dreams which included obtaining a Phd degree the very first day I started classes. I utilized as many opportunities that came my way during my master's program to prepare myself for the doctoral program.

In 2017, I started my doctoral program at Morgan State University in Bioenvironmental Science. It was a long, rigorous, challenging, fun, wonderful and exciting years to obtaining my doctoral degree. During this period, I went through a roller coaster of different kinds of emotions- frustration, anger, stress, and excitement. I almost gave up at some point but the will and drive to complete my program and obtain my PhD degree was greater than the challenges I encountered. I know some of you could relate to this feeling.

Today, I joined the 1.2% of the US population with a doctorate. My village people came through with prayers, thanks to my family, my parents for their continuous support and encouragement when the going was tough. To my friends who stayed true with me during the process, thank you. My advisor James Wachira, Ph.D. and Co-advisor Hongtao Yu, Ph.D. this journey wouldn't be a success without your mentorship and guidance. Thank you for your invaluable support.

To whom more is given, more is expected. I know that a lot have been deposited in me and I am ready to give back to my community. Currently, I am utilizing the skills and knowledge I obtained during my graduate training in the Maryland Department of Health as a Data Analyst.

Never give up on your dreams. Keep pushing through until you get to the finish line. The reward is always fulfilling.

I look forward to doing great work and partnering  with some of you to the development of our communities. Ready to lead the world!!

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