I’ve had a lot of proud moments in my life. The first proud moment was when I was 9. I accomplished something Most thought I couldn’t do. I probably couldn’t do it now – I presented a four-page welcome address for a very important religious ceremony in front of hundreds of people without the actual paper. I had to memorise it. I still laugh when I watch the video. I was so tiny in the almost ankle length (definitely oversized) pleated wraparound skirt and a white dress shirt and blue scarf. And I was awarded a scholarship for one academic year I think.
I’ve also had a lot of little proud moments since then but the one that really, really stands out is getting accepted into the university. I was barely 16 and mum only let me write the entrance examination on a gamble – a spike in my grades. It was less than a month before the matriculation examinations and I still had to sit for WASSCE the same month and NECO the next month, both certificate examinations.
What that means is that my writing the examination was supposed to be an attempt at best. Like an experience thing. But it was a challenge for me. I really wanted to get in. So I read like I never did before and probably haven’t since.
And I aced it. And the post-entrance too. But then there’s politics involved in admissions process like everyone knows. It wasn’t even till almost 3 months after when the first admission list came out and I was in the top twenty on merit. On merit for crissakes!!
I wish that moment was revealed through an envelope with that letter headed paper stamped ACCEPTED. Instead it was revealed on a computer screen but you get the flow.
I have had a lot more proud moments since – writing my degree exam, defending my project, my convocation ceremony, actually getting my degree certificate, being drafted for the national service – but all these don’t compare to how proud I simply was of myself gaining admission into the university.