Nigerian Student Perseveres Through Many Challenges to Study in the U.S.

By Shelby McGuire

David Adedeji is a freshman student at Cedarville University studying Computer Science. What most people don’t know about David is that he is significantly younger than his classmates at 16 years old.

Adedeji grew up in Lagos, Nigeria. In August 2018 at just 15 years old, he moved with his mom and brother to Huntington, West Virginia. At that time, he was ready to begin his senior year of high school because Nigerian school systems are more accelerated than that of the United States. Many high schools were wary of enrolling him into the 12th grade because of his age.

Finally, one high school agreed to accept him as a senior if he could take the ACT. Adedeji was undaunted by this request and passed the ACT with a score of 31. At 31, he was just five points away from a perfect 36, and well above the national average of 21.

After high school, the challenge of his age continued as he began applying to colleges. Despite his impressive academic background in a top Nigerian boarding school, a high ACT score, and a high school diploma obtained in the United States, several schools denied him acceptance.

Adedeji had heard about Cedarville University from some of his friends who graduated before him and attended there. But he wasn’t sure if a Christian school would be the right place for him.

Eventually, after being denied at many other schools, he gave into their recommendation and applied to Cedarville. He was quickly accepted into Cedarville, and his choice was made clear since he was denied acceptance from other schools on his list.

He began at Cedarville this past fall, and he says that the transition was smooth, and he found it easy to settle in and make new friends. He said that his classes are enjoyable compared to the rigorous boarding school that he had attended for much of his secondary education in Nigeria.

Adedeji said that he is so glad that he ended up at Cedarville despite it not being one of his first choices. He was able to quickly bond in his group of international students during orientation and continues to build and enjoy those friendships.

Dr. Lindsey McCarty, assistant professor of Mathematics, had Adedeji in her Calculus 1 class this past fall. She said that David always comes to class ready to learn, but also wishing for the warmer weather that he misses from back home.

Lagos, the Nigerian city Adedeji is from is a large metropolis with a cityscape of congested streets and clusters of skyscrapers. His father works in the city as an accountant. Adedeji said after moving to the United States, he had an opportunity to visit New York City. He said it felt just like home.

Moving to the United States was a fairly smooth transition culturally. He did not have to learn a new language, only a new system of measurements. The educational transition was a little more tumultuous.

He chose to move to the United States for his education because he is interested in pursuing cyber security. Since he was a child, he has always enjoyed learning about computers and technology. He began coding when he was in ninth and 10th grade, and he is currently studying Computer Science at Cedarville. After graduation, he plans to attend graduate school and then work for either the FBI or the CIA.

Shelby McGuire is a senior Professional Writing & Information Design major and arts & entertainment news editor for Cedars. She enjoys working out as well as feeding her caffeine addiction pretending that she has her life together.

1 Reply to "Nigerian Student Perseveres Through Many Challenges to Study in the U.S."

  • comment-avatar
    William McVey February 9, 2020 (5:07 pm)

    I’m very glad that cedarville University my alma mater has welcomed this young Nigerian student to the campus I’m a graduate of 1968 and in my freshman year of 1964 we had a young guy from West Africa name Sunday is a wonderful person and to be a friend of God bless

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