Meet The 1st First-class Graduate Of Mass Comm In Kogi Varsity Since 1999


Josiah Vincent graduated top of his class in the Department of Mass Communication, Prince Abubakar Audu University (PAAU) formerly known as Kogi State University (KSU), with a first-class degree accumulating a 4.53 CGPA! Breaking a 23-year-old jinx in the history of the department.

He is the first-ever first-class graduate in the department as widely reported.

It will interest you to know that the story of Josiah Vincent is more special because despite being in relationship for some part of his programme, he did not allow his marital affairs to be a roadblock to his academic excellence but saw it as an opportunity to carve out a bright future for himself. He spoke to AROGBONLO ISRAEL in an exclusive interview with Quest Times.

QT: Tell us a bit about yourself.
Josiah: My name is Josiah Vincent. I was born in Ankpa, Kogi State but I have spent the better part of my life in Okura-Olafia, Dekina LGA. I am a fresh graduate of Mass Communication from Prince Abubakar Audu University, formerly Kogi State University, Anyigba.

QT: How has your educational journey been?
Josiah: My educational journey was, well (sighs), a normal one. There was nothing particularly out of the ordinary. Perhaps, it is important to mention that I never attended any “elite” schools or anything remotely close to that. I began my primary education in LGEA primary school, Ochi-Ofago, a remote village close to Okura. When we moved to Okura, I completed my primary education there and started and finished my secondary education at Community Secondary School, Okura-Olafia. The journey through these schools where I had my basic education taught me something. I did not have to learn everything in school. Most of the schools I attended had an utter lack of qualified personnel and it was not uncommon to see someone in senior secondary school who cannot read. But I learned to study outside school, and credit to that should go to my parents and older siblings.

QT: That sounds interesting. How do you feel as the first-ever first-class graduate in your department?
Josiah: I am completely humbled by the privilege. I have come to realise that every little effort counts in the achievement of anything you set out to achieve. This feat is not mine, it belongs to the entire department who taught me well, the lecturers who tirelessly worked to brew the knowledge I drank, the coursemates who encouraged and supported me when it seemed impossible and my true friends who were my compass. I am elated but humbled. I hope students from the department will do better than me in the near future.
QT: What inspired the feat?
Josiah: I would say the drive to succeed, to be the best, is ingrained in my siblings and I, carved into our very substance by the our parents, especially our father. From primary school, he has always wanted us to be the best and he accepted nothing less. Perhaps, that kindled that fire in me to succeed in the university. My friends also helped. The constant encouragement when it seemed I had lost faith in myself went a long way.

QT: Were you in any relationship while in school?
Josiah: (Smiles)… I know the expected answer to this question might be no. But I was in a relationship for some part of my programme. However, it did not sap me of the time and focus required. In fact, it did quite the opposite. Being in a relationship with a supportive person can actually be an asset rather than a distraction. The problem is that those kind of people are few.

QT: How were you able to balance it coupled with your academics?
Josiah: To be honest, it is not easy to do. But when you are with someone who reminds you to read, prepare for tests and do your assignments, it becomes easy. Like I said earlier, there are not many of those. Perhaps, it helped that there was an agreement that she wouldn’t be a distraction.

QT: What’s your next plan after graduation?
Josiah: To go a step further in my education, attain a higher degree.

QT: Your advise to your predecessors looking after you for a success career.
Josiah: Nothing is impossible. This is one truth which should serve as a platform for their efforts. When you are determined to succeed at something, nothing should hold you back. Your educational background is not an excuse to fail. You can come from the poorest schools and still do well for yourself. Secondly, to succeed, you have to surround yourself with good friends, friends who understand your vision and support it. They should also be friends who have ambition of their own. Like the Bible says, “iron will sharpen iron”. Finally, rely on God in all you do. Subject all your effort to his endorsement and you are bound for success.


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