VIRGINIA STATE UNIVERSITY, VA—29-year-old Mofolake Odubonojo was one of nearly 300 graduates who received a degree from Virginia State University on Saturday, December 10, 2022. Ms. Odubonojo graduated from the VSU College of Humanities and Social Sciences with an impressive 4.0 grade point average. Her remarkable accomplishments include overcoming injuries from a traumatic burn accident, immigrating to the United States from Nigeria, and maintaining a full-time job throughout her academic career.
Ms. Odubonojo says her higher education academic career began in Nigeria, but it was sidetracked by a hot oil cooking accident that landed her in the traumatic burn unit.
“All I knew was that all of a sudden—my body was burning. The hot oil spewed all over my face, chest, and legs. I was rushed to the clinic for treatment before I was transferred to a burn center,” said Odubonojo.
The accident delayed Odubonojo’s final exams, and she had to repeat the semester to graduate. She eventually graduated with an Associate’s Degree in Science Laboratory Technology. Years later, she moved to America to pursue her interest in psychology. She visited her brother in the U.S. and spoke to her sister-in-law, who attended Virginia State University.
“She told me that VSU is an outstanding school. It feels like you are among people who support each other,” said Odubonojo. “You’re going to feel at home if you go to VSU.”
Once in America, she received another degree from a local community college and then transferred to Virginia State University where received her Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology. Odubonojo also tutors other students and works full-time as a residential counselor for individuals with special needs. She plans to pursue her Ph.D. in mental health counseling.