I've got an exit interview from one of my friends who I met on my last day of camp. She turned out to be in the same Local Government as I was, so it was easy to get her to do an interview for me. In fact, she was WAY excited to do it, so here goes... Wait, before we go there, VOTE for me as TUTORIAL BLOG OF THE YEAR on Nigerian Blog Awards!
1. State your aje-butter credentials, according to Berry’s definition.
Hi guys! My name is Tomi, my aje-butter credentials which are not too aje butterish are: born and raised in Nigeria :D, regular summer jaunts, college in America, total time in obodo oyimbo was about 5 years and I hauled my ass back here to serve my wonderful country.
2. How would you summarize your NYSC experience from start to finish?
OMGGGG NYSC was crazy but amazing! There were times when I wanted to cry, times when I did cry and times when I had the best laughs. It was a struggle but I'm proud I did it.
3. What, if anything, did you learn during your NYSC year? Personally and/or career-wise?
Personally, I learnt that I am a really strong person, I don't know how to word that but there were some challenges I faced at work and in my personal life that I didn't think I would overcome. My grandpa died right before NYSC was supposed to start and I was soooo close to pulling out, but I didn't. Career wise, NYSC helped me realize that I do have a lot to offer; granted, school doesn't teach you how to deal with the real world but certain skills that I acquired at college put me ahead.
4. What are your personal views on the relevance of NYSC in Nigeria currently?
NYSC is relevant in the sense that it gives you a form of a gap year to develop yourself personally and professionally. During my NYSC, I took bead making classes which help me draw in some extra income, I became a distributor of Federico Mahora products and I started up my jewelry business. It's great to have that time to start a side hustle, lol. The only reason why I would say NYSC is irrelevant in Nigeria today is because of how poorly organized it is. People say they would rather spend that year trying to hustle but the hustle doesn't always work out and it's nice to have that N19,800 allowance from NYSC as fall back money.
5. Why did you decide to go through NYSC?
I decided to go through NYSC because in the long run, I want to be in Nigeria and I didn't want to have to start dealing with NYSC at a later age. I was very "Don't come back to Naij when you leave" but in junior/third year, I had the opportunity to come back and work and I realized that Nigeria had sooo much to offer so I quickly changed my plans.
6. What was your experience like in camp? Favorite/worst memories?
I was in Lagos camp and it was crazzzzzzzy!!!! LOOOL all the "big boys and girls", I was in camp for 13 days (had to leave for gramps burial) and I got sick once but it was cool beans. My FAAAAVE memory in camp was indomie and Heineken every night... I had a vendor guy there, and the moment he saw me approaching, a nice cold Heineken was gleaming at me!!! Haha, I also enjoyed the "Fayrouz club," which was a tent with a good DJ. I was in a room with some amazing ladies. Honestly, Lagos camp was on a different level with the drunken nights annnd the Mr. Macho competition?? Eye Candy Galore. My WORST memory was frog jumping from one end of the parade ground to the other end but it was fun when I saw some other people rolling on the floor. I really didn't mind waking up early and marching on the parade ground.
*PS: So Tomi was a baaaaaaaaaaaaaad girl! No wonder I didn't meet her until camp was over. Me, miss goody-two-shoes and she as Miss Mami Market :p. Just kidding! Wish you all the best sweetie!