Canada is the first country, Daniel Ohaegbu, 24, has ever travelled to outside of his home country Nigeria. He calls it home today, but it wasn’t always a walk in the park for Ohaegbu from the moment he stepped off the plane.
International students face contemporary racism here, says Ohaegbu.
“It comes in the form of assumptions. Assuming you know about an individual’s intellectual capacity or ability to perform. For example, a question people like to constantly ask me is my ability to command the English language so well,” he explains.
Spurred to do something about this, he founded several organisations to advocate for more diversity and inclusion among Canadian society and businesses that would positively impact international students. “I’ve always felt the obligation to advocate for international students dealing with financial struggles and racism — in particular the black community,” says Ohaegbu, who has since graduated with a BA in Psychology from University of Prince Edward Island.
“I moved to Canada in 2013 but I couldn’t start school because I was three weekends late for the September semester. When I finally did arrive, I made the decision to stay in Mississauga where I attended a university prep college before I could finally join the University of Prince Edward in 2014,” he said.
Daniel wants international students to know that they bring value, substance, social and financial capacity to whatever country they’re going to. It oftentimes may seem the other way around, but it’s not.
“My advice would be to create networks, get out there and build relationships. Put yourself through challenges so you can learn and grow,” he added.
This interview has been edited for length and clarity.
Source: study international||Kuulpeeps.com
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