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Oluwabukolami Adeyemi and Mmesomachukwu Okonkwo, both teenagers and students of Chrisland School, recently put Nigeria on the global map as they received the British Council Outstanding Cambridge Learner’s Awards, following their stellar performance in the 2022 Cambridge IGCSE and Cambridge AS Level Examinations. The duo spoke with YEJIDE GBENGA-OGUNDARE on the feats and the opportunities opened to them.
I am 18 years from Ega in Kogi State and a student of Chrisland Pre Degree College, Lagos. Unlike Mmesoma, I did not write IGSCE, I wrote Cambridge International AS levels Law exam commonly known as Cambridge A Levels, Prior to writing that exam, I have never done any other Cambridge exams, so it was quite strange to me when I started preparing for it, but I had support from my teachers and principal, Dr Agomoh and my parents. With A Levels, there is a lot of independent study that has to be done, so I had to prepare for my summer in 2022 to prepare for the exam coming up in October. Throughout July and August, I was in school preparing for exams, I had to do past questions, analyse the maths scheme and read a lot of textbooks. I put in a lot of hard work and sacrifice as I couldn’t do a lot of what I was doing when everyone was on holiday, but I think everything just worked together for my good.
I am being celebrated because I recently received recognition for an award from British Council and Cambridge International Assessment Education for having the highest mark in the world in Cambridge International AS Level Law, that is Top in the World Cambridge International AS Level Law and High Achievement Award in Cambridge International AS Level Psychology.
What is the next thing for you?
A levels is a step further than IGSCE, so it’s giving me direct entry into the university in the UK. That means I have only three years to study Law in a university in the UK. So I think the next big thing is for me to take opportunity of the admission I have gotten and resume school and continue to further my academic journey. I have numerous offers from schools in the UK, so in due time, I will pick my choice.
What’s your Chrisland experience like?
My Chrisland experience started when I was one year old; I attended preschool, nursery and primary school in Chrisland School, Ladipo Oluwole. Afterwards, I left high school and came to Chrisland for my Cambridge A levels which is what I did in Chrisland pre-degree college. It was a very welcoming environment. I didn’t resume early, but I had people who were trying to get me into the system fast like the housemistress, A levels coordinators and lecturers and helped me to settle into the system properly. Academically, I would say the lecturers were intentional about everybody’s individual journey.
I am 17 years old and from Anambra State. We wrote the exam in May/June last year, six subjects for most of us. This year, I went to the British Council to receive the Top in the World award for English IGSCE as a second language. So out of the millions of students that wrote the exam, I emerge as Top in the World in English; the English exam was theory, there was no objective. It was in three parts, all theory. We had to do writing and listening and speaking for the exam. While preparing for the exam, there were challenges, as I said it was theory-based and one of my first exam, unlike my WAEC exam which was theory and objective. It was a bit daunting for me.
What’s the next step?
The next thing for me is to go to the university to study Business Management. Hopefully by this time next year, I will be studying the course. I am also thinking of internships and learning a few skills as well before going to school.
Why the choice of study Business Management?
I chose this because it is something I am passionate about and I feel I could do it very well. I started a small business when I was in year seven or eight and it was something I loved doing. I also feel that business management is very versatile. So in a world where Artificial Intelligence is emerging more and more, you want to take a course that is versatile and you can move around with.
If you were to choose any other course, what would it be?
I would journalism because it is not necessarily an English -based course but with my knowledge of English, I will use it to write as well. So I think I will like to do journalism
How was your English before now?
I have been doing very well in English and it is my best subject. Sometimes I get the best in English Language in my set and some other English awards such as best essay writer, etc.
How did you prepare for the exam?
There was a preparation I did with my mates at school. Not everyone took the exam, only a few students who were interested did, so they separated us; while the regular students did school work, we in the other classroom had educators coming to take us in all the six subjects that we offered. We would spend the time doing past questions on Cambridge website; we would have mock exams similar to IGSCE. Our teachers will make us pick a few topics on essay writing; I think that was what really helped. I treated the past questions one by one until I covered most of it.
Which countries are you looking up to study?
United Kingdom and United States.
What’s your Chrisland experience like?
Chrisland is all I have always known, not only because of the academic backing that we got, my teachers in particular have been helpful from the start, part of the reason why I am always motivated to do well. I also enjoyed the extracurricular activities. They are always looking for experiences to make us grow. Aside from the school things we do, we go out for multiple debates, competitions and arts as well. So they are always getting us involved in things that will incite our passion.
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