What I expected from Nigerian universities vs what I got

University admission in Nigeria- What I expected vs what I got

The big dream

My dream was to get admission into Unilorin to study medicine at age 16, graduate at 23 and probably get married at 25. I had my entire life planned out. Little did I know that life was laughing at my plans.

Writing my first UTME

I woke up around 5 a.m, I doubt I slept at all. I rushed to school as soon as I was done preparing. The school bus took us to the venue. I wasn’t due for my exam until 1 p.m but my classmates and I were at the venue as early as 7 a.m.

We could all feel the adrenaline rush but it vanished few hours after waiting. We resulted into analyzing people and the way they were dressed.

I remember that we were looking for handsome boys. My best friend and I even stared at a beautiful lady till the point where she caught us staring.

Anyways this story is not the point. The point is we all planned to score above 300. Yup, that was the plan. In fact, we came out of the CBT center super sure that we crushed the exam.

I honestly thought I would score as high as 350. My heart was broken when I scored 264. I mean how was I supposed to get medicine with that mark.

I cried so hard that night. I thought all my friends would score as high as 300 too but as it turned out, we all had our crosses to carry.

Choosing a University

Most of my friends chose Obafemi Awolowo University. Those who didn’t pick OAU chose Unilorin instead.

I actually chose Unilorin even though my best friend begged me to pick OAU. I ended up in OAU anyways.

P.s don’t judge me I had my reasons.

OAU had a bad reputation of always going on strike. If lightening was a university it would be Obafemi Awolowo University.

That’s all in the past now.
Back to Unilorin, I chose Univeristy of Ilorin. I don’t regret it well maybe a little. Who wouldn’t. They broke my heart into a million pieces.(I shouldn’t be giving this information now.)

Writing Unilorin Post UTME

It was September12 2017 when I wrote that exam. I remembered the day yes. Because it was my birthday. Dad drove me to the University of Ilorin. It was my first time in a university.

There was a really crazy holdup outside the school and my guess was it was because of the number of candidates writing the exam.

One thing I won’t ever forget about Unilorin is the distance from the University gate to the main buildings. I won’t ever understand why it’s so far.

I got a major shock when I saw the amount of students queuing up to write the same exam. I felt dizzy. I would have dropped down if I didn’t see one of my classmates. He had also been frightened by the sight.

For the first time in my life I realized that academics was more than competing with my classmates. It was more. At that time I thought it was competing with the world but I now know better.

Alone with my thoughts and results.
Again I cried when I got back home from Ilorin. I scored 68 or so. I had a good WAEC result but what I had wasn’t enough to give me medicine. I kept thinking, wondering why I didn’t study more or pray more.

Most of my seniors seemed to think Unilorin was a biased university. It seemed they chose more Muslims, indigenes and christians. It wouldn’t matter if you had really good results. Since I lacked that, the only option was using connection.

Before I could say jack Robinson local woman was in Ilorin again to pursue her dream of getting medicine by force.

Using connection

It was my first time traveling alone. Ilorin was far from Iloko, the small town where I live. It was a really painful journey because the roads were bad and I had to sit in between two fat women. I was so happy when the bus finally got to it’s destination.

I boarded a cab to my dad’s friend’s office. It was my first time actually crossing an Express alone. I spent minutes staring at the moving cars. I was really scared but I had to overcome my fear.

My dad’s friend is a really nice woman. She made me feel so welcome and we talked about books. As it turned out, she loved reading books. She drove us to her home later that day.

In the following days I went visiting so many people to help with the admission. They all promised it would happen but….

They broke my heart
Joining the medical students in class.

Mummy (my dad’s friend), thought it would be better if I started lectures pending the time my admission would be totally handled. I was excited and I started attending lectures with the medical students that year with hope that I would also be admitted.

Mummy’s daughter and I who was also newly admitted would go to school as early as 6 in the morning. We had to board two cabs before getting to school. Added to that was the fact that campus shuttles were always scarce. I hate to think of the stress I went through in those days.

There’s something with Medical students and determination, they were always early. I would end up sitting at the back after running and stressing to get into a campus shuttle. Again, I hated those days especially when I didn’t get the admission after a whole month of struggling.

It was worse going back home after lectures. There was always a long queue to get a shuttle out of campus. Believe me I would have walked to the school gate if I could but it was too far.

I could swear that I would collapse if I tried it. So I chose the easy option which was to stand on a queue for at least two hours.

Eventually I gave up the suffering.

Getting a new UTME form and preparing in one month.

It was the beginning of February 2018 when I eventually gave up on Unilorin and took another JAMB. This time around, I chose OAU but I had a back up plan. I decided to do A’levels.

I went back home to Osun state to register for JAMB a day to the end of registration. I succeeded and also went to register for A’levels where I was scammed into believing the A’level center was inside Unilorin.

I went back to Ilorin afterwards where I started preparing for JAMB. I went to the kwara state library everyday for about a month. I would read during the day and start night for hours. I was determined to score above 300 but time was not my friend because my exam was starting in a month.

Registering for A’levels

Mummy followed me to the A’level center at Ilorin. It was like a desolate building. I don’t want to talk to much about the center. But I actually moved in a week later and started lessons.

I made some friends and they all had stories about their failed admission attempts. Some had been trying for four, five years. I realized my story was not the worst.

I went back home to write JAMB. I scored 279 and I was disappointed but given that I had just one month of preparation I quickly forgave myself. I continued lectures at the A’level center.

With a lot of hurdles, I eventually wrote my A’level exams. I never collected the result. I would collect it eventually I guess.

Getting Admission at last.

It must have been February 2019 when I got admission to study soil science in Obafemi Awolowo University. That was after writing post JAMB. On one hand I was happy about the admission but on the other, I didn’t like my course.

I never knew there was a course called soilscience. I wanted Medicine and I had been so angry and hurt inside when I got the course. I took another JAMB form but I lost interest in studying for another JAMB.

Realizing I lost so much chasing medicine

During the months of sulking and preparing for UTME, I had stopped doing all the things that made me happy. I realized that I stopped reading novels or writing and even playing basketball.

Not getting medicine made me realize that there had to be more to me than being a medical doctor. I spent the first two weeks in OAU trying to convince myself that I was going to be okay and that I could be successful in any field.
Eventually I realized it.

I discovered what I actually loved doing. I was so clouded with what I thought was the best for me when what I actually enjoyed doing which is writing.

Eventually I gave up fighting for medicine and channelled my energy towards becoming a better writer and a happy student.

My final thoughts:

Initially I felt sad about not getting medicine probably because I thought I had a passion for it.

It was during my days of reclusion that I actually realized I wasn’t really into medicine and hospitals(I couldn’t even stand the sight of my own blood).

I just loved to help people and I eventually realized that I could help people in any field.

I expected that I would gain admission at once and I would end up doing my dream course immediately but life doesn’t work like that.

Success has many roads, what is most important is that we reach our destination which is

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