EveryGirl Fellow, EveryGirl Program

Victoria Obike; the Ever-Smiling Fellow

“The first time my mom gave me access to a computer, I felt on top of the world”

Photo: Victoria Obike

For a child whose major excitement about using a computer was playing games on a large screen, our remarkable EveryGirl fellow, Victoria Chioma Obike’s journey has significantly evolved. Victoria is enrolled in a Cybersecurity program courtesy of a scholarship provided by the Cybercafe Foundation, aiming to empower young girls in tech like her. 

Victoria hails from Anambra but was born in the North, (Jos) where she started the infant part of her life in Jos until her parents moved back closer to home, Onitsha, which is closer to home. While it is said that children’s formative years are the best time for them to learn and speak different languages, Victoria says her time in the North was too short a time to have learned Hausa. Victoria speaks her native language Igbo, English, and a little bit of Pidgin. 

Victoria is currently an undergraduate at the Nnamdi Azikiwe University studying Linguistics. Like the typical Nigerian kid, Victoria wanted to be a Lawyer when she was younger.

“It was the reigning profession… still is. But like most Nigerian students, you propose a course and JAMB disposes another for you”.

Victoria was unable to meet the cutoff mark for Law and was offered the course, Linguistics. “I’ll still like to study Law, I found out that a master’s program in Linguistics can allow me to narrow my coursework to an aspect of Law. So that’s the goal.”

Victoria Obike was a fellow of the EveryGirl program, an initiative hosted by the KSH Foundation, dedicated to empowering, enabling, and introducing young women to technology. 

What was EveryGirl’s impact on your personal and professional life?

EveryGirl program gave me a headstart in tech industry. It fitted perfectly into the needs of a young girl venturing into the tech space, equipping me physically, mentally, and emotionally. The program gave me a platform for expression and a glimpse of the kind of life that awaits me in tech if I don’t give up. Through the courses we offered and the mantra we were taught, the program helped me establish the mindset that as a young girl in tech, I too can be an all-around success. I was also empowered with a Laptop which has helped me a great deal in my tech journey. 

An experience or moment in the EveryGirl program you hold on to?

EveryGirl was a beautiful experience, I felt loved, I felt important and I felt like I had someone holding my hands firmly to walk with me, every step of the way in the world of Technology. I still hold on to all of the experiences, I don’t have a particular one, ranging from when the flight ticket was sent to the arrival, the reception, the food, the places we visited; Almat farm, the horse riding, the games, the pitch day, the day I got my laptop, every moment will forever be cherished.

What constantly makes you hopeful for your tech career future?

Sometime in March, I had school exams and Cybersecurity courses to complete on a strict timeline, it was such a challenging time for me. But my mom would always call me to check up on me and ask about how I was doing, say a prayer or two to let me know that I had her support 100%. This makes me very hopeful. Also, successful people in the field with similar backgrounds like mine, solving problems and making money, remind me that anything is possible for anyone who does not give up on his/ her dreams. 

For Victoria, a perfect day is one that ends with a nice meal after achieving her plans and goals for the day. She finds inspiration in the words of Robert Frost: “Two roads diverged in a wood, and I — I took the one less travelled by, And that has made all the difference.”

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