A Nigerian student named Otoko Steven Edwards has bagged a first class degree in Pure and Applied Mathematics from the Department of Mathematics, Rivers State University, Port Harcourt.
But what is most exciting about the news is that Edwards is the very first student to achieve that feat since the establishment of the department in 1980.
In an interview with Legit.ng, Edwards said he was initially admitted into the school to study Mechanical Engineering but switched to Mathematics after discovering that he was more of a Math person.
“I was initially admitted to study Mechanical Engineering and along the line, I just realised the whole engineering thing wasn’t for me. I tried to apply for transfer into the Math Department. I already had a very good math foundation and I found it very easy to deal with. The transfer didn’t really work out, so I opted in for JAMB, and I when I got admitted, I left the Mechanical Engineering”
The rare feat has permanently etched his name in the school’s hall of fame.
Legit.ng sought to know how he was able to brave the odds to clinch the coveted academic cap. He said he sacrificed countless nights of sleep to be able to meet up. According to him:
“Getting into the department of mathematics, I started off with a CGPA of 4.83. Prior to that, I have had people saying ‘don’t dream of having a first-class, even if you start well because you can’t have it. People don’t get that in the Math Department.’ I believed in myself and was hopeful and prayerful. I said to myself that I can’t let the 4.83 go to waste, so I put in so much effort. Though there are semesters I had less than 4.50. But I made 4.41 as well as 4.36. In the last semester of my final year I made the last two 5.0 GPA.”
When asked how he was able to reach the topmost mark, Edwards said he prayed but that prayers were never enough since he put in so much work and studies. He told Legit.ng:
“In as much as having always wanted to finish with a first-class, everything boils down to prayer, being hopeful and believing. I remember when I studied 14hrs on a stretch during and before exams. So the hard work really paid off.”
The Department of Mathematics, Rivers State University was established in 1980, and since then no one has ever made a first class. Edwards has now broken the long-running record.
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