By Emmanuel Nduka
Solomon Terwase Apuu, a 26-year-old Benue State indigene, has bagged a first class degree in Aeronautical Engineering from the Samara National Research University, Samara, Russia.
Apuu had in 2014 also emerged as the overall best student at the Calvary Arrow College, Gboko.
Speaking to the media, Apuu who said he specializes in the maintenance of aircraft and their engines, also commended the Nigerian Government for the opportunity given to Nigerian students to study abroad through scholarships.
“Currently, I have been offered a scholarship to do a Master Degree programme in Mechanical Engineering with specialisation in aerial robotics at the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology Thuwal, Saudi Arabia, hence I could not afford to pay the over $50m needed for the direct PhD programme offered me by Arizona University (USA),” he said.
On the challenges experienced by most Nigerian students studying abroad through scholarship, Apuu lamented that the delay in the payment of stipends to help students to cater for their daily needs is one of the major problems affecting the education of most Nigerian students especially those from less privileged homes abroad.
“It is a known fact that most Nigerian students become stranded and also lose focus due to lack of money occasioned by the delay in the payment of stipends, and because of the hardship experienced, most of them engage in menial jobs to fend for themselves thereby losing focus.
“I want to thank the FG for making us proud by initiating this scholarship for young persons to go to countries of their choice across the globe for their studies free of charge. I applied for the scholarship online with my phone and without the knowledge of my family members not even my father or mother but I scaled through.
“I did not bribe anybody, the only thing I did was a written and oral interview in Lafia, Nasarawa State and Abuja, after which I was called to send my passport for the processing of my visa which I did, and the next thing I was called to get ready and that was how I found myself in Russia to study.
“This was through the Federal Government Bilateral Educational Agreement (BEA) and I applied during my 100 level in the University of Lagos where I was admitted to read applied Physics and without anybody standing for me I was shortlisted from the North Central on merit.
“So, I am calling on young people not to lose hope in our country in spite of the difficulties we are facing, let us be dedicated and have faith, because in all of these I didn’t contact anybody for help but God did it for me, what I gave was my credentials, so what we need to do is determination and focus to achieve greater things,” Apuu added.