- A valedictorian of the University of Ghana, Legon has opened up about his journey to attaining academic excellence and graduating as one of the best students
- Douglas Adjei lost his mother at the age of eight and his grandmother who took care of him passed while he wrote WASSCE
- The many losses took a toll on the St Thomas Aquinas Senior High School old boy but they at the same time motivated him to strive for the best
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Douglas Adjei, a bright young man recently graduated from the University of Ghana as valedictorian of the 2021 Business Administration Class. He achieved his remarkable feat years after the unfortunate loss of his beloved mother.
In as much as she was not alive to watch him grow and thrive, Douglas never ceased to make her proud someday.
The young man grew up with his mother and grandparents in La, a suburb of Accra and as a child, he believed his family would always be there to cheer him on throughout the stages in his life.
Little did he know that not all the people he was used to would be in his life in some years to come.
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At a young age of 8, Douglas painfully lost his dearest mother and would soon came face to face with the reality that he has no parents in his life.
Coming into knowledge of the death of his mother
When the unfortunate incidence occurred, his young brain could not process why the people around him were crying but once he saw the poster on the wall, everything made sense.
"I was young then so I didn't really know what was going on. I mostly saw people crying, especially my grandmother. I later found out when my mom's funeral posters came out," Douglas in an interview with YEN.com.gh.
Focusing on education
Now without a mother, he knew he had to look out for himself and build a better future for himself. He shifted his attention on academics and put in the work to excel at it.
He changed school quite often but that did not affect his performance.
"I changed schools several times but I had my primary 3 to JHS education at Kotoka Basic School and gained admission to St Thomas Aquinas Senior High School for his secondary education."
His mother was not around but he was blessed to have people who readily stepped in to ensure he reached his highest potential.
A philanthropist came into the picture just when he needed all the help he can get.
"There was this philanthropist at La by the name Billa Mahmud (may his soul rest in peace) who founded the Future Leaders School.
He got to know about my story through an uncle and decided to sponsor my high school education. He paid for my tuition and helped me buy any book I needed."
With his tution and other expenses at St Thomas Aquinas Senior High School catered for, he only had to pay attention to his books. He did just that and eventually, it was time to prove himself worthy of the support he received but then, the unfortunate happened again. This time, his grandmother.
"Losing my mother at that tender age deprived me of the motherly love I had always enjoyed growing up. My grandmother who happened to be my only mother also passed on during my WASSCE examination period.
Her death was a shock to me but I had to stay focused on my examination."
He pushed the pain aside, focused on his exams and after all was said and done, his results spoke for itself.
The young man who was grieving the loss of his grandmother while at the examination hall came out with flying colours.
Douglas got admitted to the University of Ghana, Legon to pursue a degree in Business Admission.
He found a light at the end of the tunnel after getting awarded a scholarship that would become his financial support.
"I received the Fondazione Edu scholarship at the University of Ghana after several rounds of interviews in my first year. I initially had to rely on benevolent individuals, friends, and loved ones to finance my university education."
The decision to pursue Business Administration at the University of Ghana, Legon.
Douglas, like many people knew his strengths and weakness hence choosing a program at the university was not a difficult one.
"I was very good at mathematics and liked working with numbers. This motivated me to read business in high school. I read Business Administration at the University of Ghana Business School because I wanted to develop my leadership skills and enhance my broad business expertise."
The secret to attaining academic excellence
Three key things were his guiding principles to being and remaining among the best in his program of studies; determination, his humble background and hardwork
I received a prophecy at the age of 8 that I'll never excel academically but I'm a professor now - Man
"I have been able to achieve academic excellence over the past years because of my determination to succeed no matter how life treats me. I knew where I was coming from so I never followed the masses. I read a lot during school days, dedicating over 3 hours of my time to studies every day."
Advice for people in similar situations
For individuals, particularly students who lost one or both parents at a young age who are going through life with little or no support system, Douglas encouraged them to trust God, trust the process and not never lose sight of the goal ahead.
"I will advise all students who are going through similar situations to always trust in the Lord and stay focused on whatever goal they want to achieve. There is light at the end of the tunnel."
YEN.com.gh earlier reported that a young lady warmed many hearts after taking to social media to recount the journey that led to graduating as the best Civil Engineering Student.
In a post sighted by YEN.com.gh, @kinfee__ shared that, she lost her father in her first year at the university right after losing her mother.
She revealed that the close relationship she had with her father made losing him very difficult.
"It was tough for me because of how close we were. I also didn't know how my life would be after that", she shared.
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