Attending University Abroad…

by Bob MajiriOghene Etemiku

There is no way I could recommend to any Nigerian student to go study in the US, the UK or elsewhere if our economy and our schools have not been messed up the way they are now by present and past leaders of this country. No responsible person or government seemingly would encourage her people to go out if the schools in the country are in good shape. You don’t have Americans, the British, the Canadians and Egyptians attending school here in Nigeria. The way it is, one suspects that the mess may have been a deliberate thing since these present and past leaders have schools of their own and have facilities that can compare with any university anywhere in the world: IBB has a school in Minna called El-Amin; Atiku’s school is Abti-American University, Obasanjo has Bells University and the Igbinedions have Igbinedion University. The paradox of all of this is that none of the children and grandchildren of these bigwigs will ever attend any of these schools despite the facilities they have. They send their children and grandchildren abroad and then, why should we encourage our students to attend these schools?

Many advantages accrue if one attends school in America, the UK, and elsewhere in the industrialized world. We gather that a lot of the multinationals here queue up to recruit Nigerians direct from schools in the UK and America today because they are sure these potential graduates are qualified and may bring the cosmopolitan edge of the industrial world to bear on their businesses. They said it was like that in the days before our oil doom – before you graduated, you already had job offers, a car and a house waiting in the wings. But take the Chinese for instance. Instead of them to destroy their public schools via under-funding and teacher-strikes leading to unpredictable academic calendars and build private and personal universities, they embarked upon a massive programme of sending their students to school in America and to the UK and Canada. Take the statistics yearly of students who go from their respective countries to the US for university education mostly to study nothing but the sciences and the radar points in the direction of the Chinese. I guess it is because of this sustained investment in science-based education abroad that’s made China a force to be reckoned with in the global economy, what with her annual trade surpluses.

Our government officials have schools of their own their and are interested in just the development and promotion of their own schools at the expense of our public schools. Our government officials who have schools of their own are not interested in this kind of massive and sustained programme and so why not encourage those who want to go out on their own to do so? If you are interested as a private candidate to go out to get an education either in the UK or America, please do so. But there are certain things you must know about the schools in the UK and the US. One, you have to have enough money to be able to finance your education. My agency asks you that one question before I agree to engage you, minding the fact that the people who run these schools are certainly in the school business as service providers and must maximize profit. I want to see physical evidence of the money you have in the form of bank statements, probably presented by your parents. There are many students out here and there who think about a university education in the US more in terms of a scholarship but they have to know that these scholarships are very competitive and some are far between. If you really want to go to school via a scholarship, you must produce a good essay, score very well in the math and probably be proficient in one vocation or the other. That way, you put yourself in a position of reckoning for scholarship. Otherwise, you would need something in the range of $10,000.00 every year just for tuition and excluding your accommodation, feeding, books and miscellaneous expenses. With that amount of money here in Nigeria, you could pursue an undergraduate degree for four years conveniently.

The other one condition you have to meet as a prerequisite for study in the US or the UK or even Canada is that you must be qualified. Even though these foreign schools know about WAEC and NECO, they have little confidence in the sparkling results you produce when you fill that online form via UCAS and through the internet. They know that some of these glowing results were produced through the efforts of mercenaries and rent-a-brains. They also want to juxtapose your result with the standards that are prevalent in the industrialized world and in most cases they rate the ones from Nigeria just below average. There have been candidates who presented glowing school certificate results in the past both locally and internationally but could not defend these results in terms of an academic proclivity. But most of the time I blame the people who cannot defend their results with some hesitation and this is because in the last decade or so, there had always been one way or another that the foundation of quality education has been diminished and undermined by those who run the country. And that is why these schools abroad expect you to pass through a one-year foundation programme before you resume the degree courses – and rightly so to sift the wheat from the chaff. But there are some private schools here in Nigeria that specializes mostly in running foundation programmes preparatory for tertiary education mostly in the UK or the US. If you get in touch with me, there are a couple of good ones I could recommend.

Another thing you should know about universities in America is that it is possible to grade them into three categories from the kind of conditions they put in place. There are those that ask you for certain grades in both the SAT and TOEFL. Others ask you for certain grades in only one of the exams – the SAT or TOEFL. The third kind are not bothered at all about your SAT or TOEFL results. To these kinds of schools, Nigeria and other countries in this fold are rich and hardly know what to do with their money and they goad you right on to come over so they get some of your money. These schools, believe it or not are backwater schools that may not even compare to the lowest grade of universities in Nigeria. Despite the fact that they are American or British or Russian or Swedish schools, they may not have the requisite academic status quo in terms of facilities. The American schools that ask to see both your SAT and TOEFL results are those in the Ivy League and they may not grant you a scholarship even if you deserve one. They are good schools, in my estimation and I encourage you to try get into any of them if you could, even though you would need something close to $100,000.00 in four years for an undergraduate and about $120,000.00 for graduate programmes. The other American schools that ask to see either your SAT or TOEFL and your ability to pay your fees are standard American schools and they may offer you a scholarship if you qualify for one. But you should not work to get a scholarship but to do well in your SAT. That way, you may clinch a scholarship if your scores are very high. Schools in the UK usually have a standard admission agency, the UCAS, almost an equivalent of JAMB and a standard school fee requirement though there are some that have a rolling admission policy like most of the schools in the US.

In the light of prevailing circumstances in Nigeria, I do not have any reservations in recommending that you study abroad, that is, if you could afford it and are qualified. The point also must be made that, if you cannot afford it but are qualified, there is nothing wrong if you go to school here in Nigeria, though you would have to make do with incessant strikes by university lecturers who may not get paid their salaries for months and lack of quality environment for learning. A certain young man I met recently has the intellectual acumen to study in any school anywhere in the world but hadn’t the corresponding wherewithal to back up his hunger

for school abroad, not even the money to enroll for his SAT exam. It was such a sad thing to do but I broke his heart when I told him what I just said in the penultimate sentence of this paragraph. But that is just the way it is.

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Olumen Irabor October 16, 2015 - 7:27 am

Why is it that YOU STUDENTS CANT EVEN READ TO KNOW THE DIFFERENT AND REAL WAEC,JAMB,NECO,WAEC GCE AND NECO GCE OFFICIAL. Stop wasting your money by sending it to those that can not help you fix your result. Those testimony you read from all this people are fake as i am the only WAEC,JAMB,NECO,WAEC GCE AND NECO GCE official that can help you get your result problem solved without any problem. I don’t lie as all i do here is real as i felt i should help those that did not do well on there result with my power here. Note: My services is not free at all, As it cost some money. But i bet you all that i will be considerate to an extent. Here is my direct number: 08110597611 .. Don’t bother calling me to disturb my peace if you know you are not serious at all. I am Mr Irabor Olumen by name and i work from 8am till 8:30pm, As i angrily came to drop this note myself because of the complains i get from the people that call me that they have be ripped off without help.

sekinah November 24, 2010 - 9:17 pm

yeah exactly m in d same problem like u

arinze nwosu August 6, 2010 - 10:55 pm

Can i get 2 school abroad with my neco june/july result made over 6grades includin maths&english.

VICTOR AKOMAYE April 20, 2009 - 7:06 pm

wonderful work from your organisation and please do keep it up…

Oluwaseyi David February 28, 2009 - 5:35 pm

am a nigerian who as finished completing high school some few years ago i as person will like to study Economics.

i have six o’level credits including English&mathematics

Concerned African February 5, 2009 - 3:04 pm

Let us also consider living situation abroad before jumping at the chance to study abroad. Yes, there is an advantage to studying abroad(finishing on time) but there are struggles that people don’t highlight when telling others about schooling outside. Unless your parents have the money, be prepared to hustle(for a lack of better terms), you can’t work off campus because of immigration laws and on campus employment pay is very low. I suggest you come abroad to study if you have the money, or can get a scholarship if not take advantage of some of our good schools at home. They are producing stellar graduates who can compete with some of the best of them in the US, UK etc. I think we do too much in degrading our schools at home because we have been brainwashed to think you are not worth much till you study abroad. People end up rushing abroad to study at an institution that can not compare to some of our no-good schools. You end up spending thousands of dollars/pounds for an education that might get you a job but will end up leaving you at the bottom of the totem poll of said job because you were not trained to be analytical (like our graduates are). Give African Education a chance. O and people are quick to run abroad for a better live but are too shocked when they get out and are working two jobs to pay the rent and feed themselves and in some cases three jobs(the third one is to furnish your “keeping up with the jones” lifestyle). If God makes a way for you to get a good degree program at home, work hard…pray for a smooth 4-5yrs(depending on your course) and God will see you through.

yahia February 1, 2009 - 1:09 am

iam egiptian and i want to know ,if i can register in university in america with my neco result nov/dec

Adeyemi November 1, 2008 - 11:26 am

hello,you can get admission without your waec,but with your transcript,SAT andTOEFL you are sure to get one,especially in uk schools can give you admission with your secondary school transcript along with TOEFL.And there is a state university in America that only needs your TOEFL and me for more information on admission abroad at

ugbede April 23, 2008 - 10:59 am

Its good.

Dunji Maryam Takuma November 30, 2007 - 1:35 pm

I think i need to study overseas because I heard the schools over there are good and encouraging, Please do continue to help us get schools, so we could be oppoptuned to further our educations and your country will be proud to have trained us in their country. thanks and keep on the good works.

ngu ndemanu george November 28, 2007 - 1:26 am

yeah i think wale is right no university abroad will admit a student without his/her waec or 'o' levels results,even if the candidate makes his SAT or TOEFL.atleast one of them should be submitted

Reply November 1, 2007 - 12:25 pm

wale oduwole, I think not. Your SAT or TOEFL are conditions you meet after your wasc and neco exams, mostly with good grades…good luck

wale oduwole October 30, 2007 - 5:26 pm

i will lyk to ask if any one could school in america,canada or uk with out he's or her WAEC OR NECO RESULTS.but with transcript ,SAT or TOEFL results.thanks***

EKWENUYA PATIENCE REMITA July 16, 2007 - 2:57 am

i will like to study abroad though our schools at home is very ok but i have a plan.

Godwin Edet-Itinam March 6, 2007 - 7:36 am

Nice write up,to sum up the canker worm on our educational system.

Anonymous October 13, 2006 - 10:52 pm

Thanks for your effort. There is need to correct some of the impressions you created in this essay:

1. It not likely that USA embassy will give anybody visa to attend what you referred to as backwater schools.

2. Student visas (F1 visas) are given to graduate students or prospective undergrads who are going to attend a four-year college.

3. In this era of strict visa regulation, it may not be possible get F1 to attend backwater colleges or even good community (two-year) colleges. One can enter US on different visas or green card, and may decide to attend any college after. This is where community colleges, technical schools and the rest of them come in, for an immigrant.

4. It's not likely that a four-year college would admit anybody without SAT or its counterpart, and TOEFL. Some schools may accept low scores. That's where the difference ends.

5. For grad students, GRE may be waived by some schools on the condition that one takes them before graduation. To have a good shot at such waivers, one must have a rich life/work experience.

6. Attending visa interviews without GRE, GMAT, SAT and TOEFL are huge risks. It does not matter if your school exempted you or not. It shows the embassy officials that one is a potential lazy student or probaly has agenda other than studying. A lot of people have been denied visas just for that reason alone.



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