*Shares Her Experience In University And Nigerian Law School.
Omotayo Dada, 23, a graduate of the University of Ilorin, and the overall Best Graduating Student in the 2022 Nigeria Law School has shared her experiences and background in an interview with Punch Newspapers.
In the interview, Omotayo described her reaction to the news of her emergence as the Best Graduating Student in the 2022 session. as “surprising and almost unbelievable”.
According to her, “I was surprised because, from stories and videos of past BGSs (Best Graduating Students) that I had watched and read, they were people with stellar academic records. I remember the very last one I watched; she was a three-time BGS before she became the best-graduating student at the Nigerian Law School. Most of these people had excellent academic records from secondary school and university; I didn’t even finish with first class at the university; I graduated with 2.1. Surprisingly, I graduated as the overall best student at the Nigerian Law School. I made first class. I was very excited. More than an academic achievement, I believe it’s a testament to God’s love and grace in my life.”
She also relished her much joy and pride her excellent result brought her family. “Hmmmn, about my result, the first class, we found out at past 2am or 3am. I was fast asleep; I didn’t check it; my sister checked it for me. When she informed me that I made first class, I was filled with joy. We started screaming. We went upstairs to tell our parents. They were happy and joined us in screaming. I’m sure that even our neighbours were wondering what was happening.”
She added, “I found out that I was the best graduating student on the first day of clearance and shared the news with my family members. Their joy doubled. I remember my dad announced in his office that I was the best graduating student at the law school. My parents and my siblings were happy and amazed at what God did for me.”
Speaking on her motivation to study law, she attributed it to her father being a lawyer and her lack of passion for mathematics which was necessary to study banking which she was initially interested in.
She equally traced her academic brilliance to her primary school days.
She told Punch, “My primary education was in Kano State where I was born. I completed my Junior Secondary School studies in Kano too. I was a brilliant student in primary school. The first position in class was always between me and my best friend at the time.
For my secondary school education, I started in Kano and completed it at Rehoboth College, Ilorin. I was an Arts student, and I didn’t graduate as the best student in the Arts class but I’m sure I came close. I’m grateful that I attended the school; there’s a good blend of academic culture and godliness which helped shape my life.
University was good. I graduated with 2.1. I watched an episode of Insecure and I heard about the Impostor Syndrome, I later knew that I was suffering from it. I didn’t realise that it affected me and the goals I set for myself at the university. Going to the university, I did not have the ambition to graduate with first class; I just wanted to graduate with a CGPA not less than 4.0/5.0; and I am glad I was able to achieve that.”
She dedicated the litany of awards she bagged at the Law school to the Grace of God and described them as a testament of God’s love for her while listing the awards.
“I won the Council of Legal Education Star Prize for the Best Student of the Year; the National Association of Women Judges Prize for the Best Female Student of the Year; the Nigerian Bar Association Prize for the Best Female Student of the Year; the Director-General’s Prize for Attaining First Class; Sir Darnley Alexander Prize for the Best Student in Property Law Practice; Honourable Justice Aloma M. Mukhtar Prize for the Best Female Student in Civil Litigation; Honourable Justice Atanda Fatai-Williams Prize for the Best Student of the Year; Dr Teslim Olawale Elias SAN Prize for the Best Student of the Year; Sir Adetokunbo Ademola Prize for the Best Student of the Year and Honourable Justice Silvanus Ayere Ajuyah Prize for the Most Promising Graduating Student of the Year.”
She advised students to always strive for the best to always strive for excellence and aim for the best and said they should not let their mindsets limit them. “The most important advice is that in all that one is trying to achieve, praying for God’s grace and mercies are very important. Trust God and pray. My story should be an inspiration. If I could achieve that feat, you can too.”