The best candidate in the 2023 UTME, Miss Kamsiyochukwu Umeh, who scored a total of 360 out of 400 marks, was interviewed and she shared the secrets to her success and her aspirations in life. We would like Myschoolers to read and share their thoughts.
Can you tell us a little about yourself?
My name is Nkechinyere Kamsiyochukwu Umeh. I am from Anambra State. I attend Deeper Life High School, Mowe, Ogun State. I am a science student in SSS 3 and I am 16 years old. I am from a family of four children and I am the first child.
You’re in SS3, you mean you wrote the UTME as a student?
Yes. My school organised everything for us. My classmates and I were registered by our school and we wrote the exam between the second and third term break.
What’s your impression about the UTME, is it a difficult exam?
No, I don’t think so. It’s not so difficult. It’s just a matter of how you prepare. It is about how hard you read, how many questions you solved. It’s not a really difficult exam.
How did you prepare?
My school was highly involved in our preparation for the exam. We were given a series of tests and classes; our teachers drilled us. There was also a JAMB CBT app which the school distributed to all students. It had different UTME past questions and you can take a mock exam. I also practised on my own. My school always encouraged us to persevere and that it would soon be over.
How long did the preparation take?
We started preparation immediately after we entered SSS3. This was when we started receiving pep talks on the exam; the school organised special UTME classes for us.
How did you feel when you saw your scores?
When it was announced that JAMB had released the result, I was in school and I went to meet my counsellor. I also called my parents to check for me. When I called them that day, my mum told me the result. My parents were excited. I particularly could not contain my joy. I wanted to shout at the top of my lungs; I was incredibly excited.
What does it feel like to be the candidate with the highest UTME score?
I almost could not believe it. I was really happy.
What are the secrets of your academic feat?
First, I give the glory to God, who made this a possibility. Aside from this, I also practised a lot of past questions to familiarise myself with the kind of questions JAMB could bring out. I also read my textbooks and then, I paid attention when the teachers took us through classes. In summary, I’ll say there is the God factor, which is key. Then my teachers, who made a lot of sacrifices for this to happen.
There is also a high level of discipline in my school, which removes things that may act as inhibitors to our success. My school frowns on exam malpractices; the management really stands against it. Any student caught cheating is expelled. So, this instils in us a culture of discipline, not depending on shortcuts to our success.
What role did your parents play in all of this?
My parents were there for me while I was preparing. Though I am a boarder, they always called me every weekend to give me words of encouragement. And whenever the school was opened for visitation, they never missed the opportunity to see me and encourage me to work harder.
What school did you apply to and what’s your course of study?
I applied to study Chemical Engineering at the University of Lagos, Akoka.
Why that course?
For starters, I have always been a lover of Chemistry. I scored 99 in Chemistry, which is my highest. It is my best subject. In Mathematics, I scored 98. Then the idea of working in an industry or a factory appeals to me; I want to do something in the line of engineering.
Who are your role models?
My major role model is the proprietor of my school, Pastor (Dr) W.F. Kumuyi. I also look up to Dr Ben Carson.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years from now?
In 10 years from now, I see myself as a graduate and I must have completed my master’s and PhD. I see myself as very successful by the grace of God. I intend to do my master’s and PhD abroad.
For a 16-year-old teenager like you, this is no mean feat. What stands you out?
Hard work, diligence and support from my family
What advice do you have for students hoping to achieve this kind of feat?
I want to advise them to work hard and start preparing early because it is always good to start on time. They must avoid anything that can distract them. They should also not look for shortcuts or easy ways to do things. The road to success is difficult, but the result is always gratifying. They should also trust in God with all their hearts. I want to particularly advise parents to take their children to good schools where they can get the best. Good education is the best legacy.
Source: Punch News