Willing to Lose My Life

I come from a beautiful land that has a rich culture, delicious food, and extreme heat! I was born and raised in Nigeria and this will forever be my world. Even though I live in the United States it is as if I never left Nigeria because I have made sure to maintain my cultural heritage. I speak my language at home, keep up with the latest Nigerian music, and keep up with the latest Nigerian fashion. Nigeria is a country that has the potential to be great, but greed and corruption holds it back. When I found out the awful truth about what is going on in my homeland, it completely shaped my goals and aspirations.

It all began on a hot day in Nigeria, I was late for school. After I was dropped off I noticed a fellow classmate outside of the school gates drenched in tears. I asked him what was wrong and he told me that he could not go to school because his parents could not afford his school fees. I thought that it was ridiculous that he could not get an education just because of his family's financial status. I tried to coerce him to come inside, but he repeatedly refused. A teacher heard the ruckus outside the gate and when she saw I was trying to get my classmate to come into the school I was heavily scolded. She forced me to leave him crying outside the school not caring about his situation. All day I could not stop thinking of that boy and when school finally ended I rushed to the gates as fast as I could, but he was gone. This memory haunts me to this day and has inspired me to change the way the educational system in Nigeria works. Due to the corrupt government parents have to pay for a public education and things such as scholarships do not exist. If a child's family cannot afford the fees for an education that child just does not get an education. Many children that do not get an education earn money doing meager jobs like selling crops or even begging. The lack of an education among the children also constitutes to the high amount of crime in Nigeria. Some of these people do not want to have meager jobs as a way to earn money, so in accordance to sociological strain theory, they turn to stealing and even killing to provide for themselves.

The more knowledge I gained on how the extreme amount of corruption is destroying Nigeria I knew I wanted to take a stand against it.  I want to be able to change all of this. My short term goal is to graduate high school and become a neurologist. My long term goal and main priority is to get a grant that will enable me to start building schools in Nigeria that do not require tuition. I want to be able to provide scholarships for as many children as possible because everyone deserves the right to get an education. My short term and long term goal are intricately intertwined because I cannot help others in regards to education if I do not make something out of myself first.I know education is the key that will cause the ripple effect needed to change Nigeria for the better. If more people can get educated, find a job, and be productive members of society, the extremely high rates of crime will decline immensely.

What I want to do is very dangerous because it will be a battle between me and Nigeria's corrupt government. Many of the political leaders do not want people to get an education, so that they can stay in power and keep all the money for themselves. These corrupt governors are the reason the brain drain is increasing in Nigeria. The brain drain is when Nigerians get the opportunity to leave Nigeria for a better education, but never return due to the corrupt society. This causes the next generation of Nigerians to grow up less educated. I do not want to be a part of this statistic. Many people try to discourage me by telling me that my dream to change Nigeria is hopeless and that I could even lose my life. I do not listen to them because I am prepared to lose my life if it means changing the lives of others for the better.

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