#Journey after school is a weekly series that captures Nigerian youths’ life, struggles, ease, unemployment, and employment opportunities after graduating from universities, polytechnics, and colleges.
Our interviewee is a civil servant; he shares his insightful journey after school with us – his waiting period, struggles, and triumph when he finally landed a good job. Enjoy!
Can we meet you, sir?
Yes, my name is Shokoya Michael (not the real name, of course). I graduated from the University of Agriculture, now the federal University of Agriculture. I studied Animal science – I specified in pasture and range management.
What year did you graduate?
I graduated in 2009.
Did you serve?
Yes, I did, and I finished with my service in 2010.
Have you been working since then?
No, I started working in 2013.
Wow, so you waited three years?
What were you doing for those three years?
I decided to continue my educational pursuit, and in the middle of it, I was helping my dad out with his work. And I was also trying to improve myself by reading books and all.
Were you paid by your dad?
No, I was doing it as a father-to-son duty.
During those three years, how did you cope financially?
I saved up some money during my service years, and I achieved some things with the money. I also got some stipends from my dad while working with him.
Where do you work now?
I work with the state ministry.
Was it easy getting the job?
It wasn’t easy because I could remember I applied for a job in the administration before senator Ibikunle Amosun was elected the governor of Ogun state in 2012.
I was supposed to be one of those who would have been employed at the time, but they muddled everything up along the line.
Those of us who were shortlisted were told to await the next phase of employment. But it never saw the light of the day until the administration finished its term. That was in 2011.
So, how did you get your present job?
In 2012, someone called my dad that there was a form for employment – the ASCOND form. For about a year between January to December, there was a series of tests – the oral and the written. By January 2013, I got employment. The process of getting employed took me a year.
You were selected based on merit?
Yes, I was and some other ones too.
Lucky you. Smiles
So do you see yourself continuing with the work? Is it okay financially?
In Nigeria of today – in fact, in life, one can never be too satisfied. Man will always want more; we are Oliver Twist.
Well, I’m pleased with the work I’m doing, which doesn’t foreclose the fact that I can find some other things to do to support what I’m doing.
How has a life after school been for you?
Well, it has been good, but it wasn’t easy. But, there are people like me – older ones, younger ones who have graduated before and after me who aren’t as lucky as I am because I believe I’m quite fortunate. Probably if I didn’t take the job, I’d have found other things to do that will be well above this level that I am
Or, you might not find anything to do…
Smiles. Life is not balanced, but with the little, we thank God.