- Tomiwa Ademidun
- Nov 14, 2017
Tomiwa Ademidun, HBA and Engineering ’18 dual-degree candidate, is the recipient of the Jessie & Tom Archibald OSOTF Award. He wrote a blog for Donor Thank You Day, expressing his gratitude for the award and the opportunity it gave him to study at Ivey.
I have always believed that to get the best return on my educational investment, I must be willing to fully commit my most valuable resources: time and money. Between engineering and Ivey, I am paying the two highest undergraduate tuitions at Western and I cannot work any part time jobs. My parents are already very stretched financially as we run a church and support family back in Nigeria. This award allows me to focus on my education, eases a financial burden, and motivates me to keep working harder. Thank you for this support.
To understand who I am, you should know that my career aspirations are very closely linked with my life aspirations. Work-life balance is a very topical issue on which I take a contrarian position; I am trying to finding meaningful work that I want to devote my life to. I am very interested in the technology industry and more specifically, in the agriculture (agritech), education technology (edtech), and financial technology (fintech) space in emerging countries. Coming from Nigeria, a country with vast natural resources yet vast income inequality due to a broken manufacturing industry, inadequate education sector, and a virtually non-existent credit system, I have witnessed firsthand how mismanagement of resources and a lack of information is the underlying problem plaguing many developing countries.
I hope that I can work for a company, or even start my own company, that uses technology to solve the major agricultural, educational, and financial issues afflicting developing countries. I am actively working towards this goal by developing various software projects in my free time; diligently reading about and studying the finance, education, and agriculture industry; and reaching out to people in the industry for mentorship and advice.
The most important activity I am involved in is a mentorship initiative that I started for teenagers at my church. I identified some boys at my church who were going through tough times, and took them out for ice cream to get to know them. I realized that they were lacking purpose and vision in their lives, so I found out what their passions are. I then networked around my town looking for mentorship programs that could keep them busy.
I am very proud of this program because first, this was a program that I literally started from scratch; I had an idea in my head and I was able to bring it to fruition. I have also said that any social causes that I am going to do, it must be a self-perpetuating venture that allows people to support themselves in the long run. I am proud to say that some of the boys have transitioned from unpaid mentorship to part-time jobs. Other children have invited their friends to join, and are continuing the cycle of mentorship and leadership.
I would like to say thank you for this award. Both my family and I feel very blessed for receiving this opportunity. My parents have always impressed on me the value of education. Beyond saying thank you for giving me this award, thank you for believing in me and investing in me.