#LEAPISPARTOFMYSTORY Week 14: OKECHUKWU, VICTOR ANTHONY.

Okechukwu LIPOMSI am a Nigerian who grew up in a family where education and personal achievement are highly respected. My parents – the best parents in the world, encouraged my siblings and I to live-by and treasure these values. To me, LEAP Africa is an embodiment of these values. I’m currently a postgraduate student of economics in one of Nigeria’s iconic universities, a budding entrepreneur, writer and speaker. I am also volunteering with an international youth initiative in Nigeria, to birth social innovation projects that would enshrine the values of good governance, transparency, accountability, democracy, and ultimately lift Nigerians out of poverty through entrepreneurship.

I got involved with LEAP for the first time when at the invitation of a friend –Mr. Kola Odunlami, I attended an Apostles in The Market Place (AiMP) meeting in Lagos where Mrs. Ndidi Nwuneli, the founder, was billed to speak. Reading her profile alone captured my heart immediately. The next most significant early encounter was when Dr. Mrs. Orode Doherty, an Africa Leadership Initiative West Africa (ALIWA) Fellow visited my University in October and November 2009 respectively to speak. After that encounter, my life never remained the same.

Consequently, my engagement with LEAP has been like the relationship of a bosom friend. The organization has been a partner in progress, making information on job openings, career opportunities and life enhancement materials available. In fact, a lot of skills I use today were skills I absorbed from attending programmes such as effective communication skills, negotiating, volunteering, working in business environments, standard social etiquettes, writing for grants, etc. I have also benefitted immensely from the network of friends I’ve been able to cultivate as a result of LEAP’s activities. To a significant extent, I also owe my success today to wonderful LEAP instructors like Oje Ivagba, Asuquo Asuquo, Seyi Ojurongbe and the exceptional research staff who produce the life transforming instructional materials for the programme.

After all these and more that keeps adding up by the day, I cannot but say LEAP is part of my story.

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