Perewari Victor Pere from Bayelsa state Nigeria, the star at the 158th graduation ceremony of Lincoln University in Pennsylvania told his colleagues about what motivated him in life.
Pere who made a perfect straight A average in Computer Science and was the valedictorian at the event on 12 May, was dogged by problems of late fee payment during his studies. But he did not allow the problem to derail his focus.
He took the opportunity to tell his classmates that he loved Lincoln and has learned that people create their own futures and jobs.
“Life as we know it has no limits,” he said.
He added that life always presents opportunities even if they are as obscure as the chance to help someone else achieve their goals.
“It is one thing to dream and another to achieve,” he said.
Perewari Victor Pere who comes from Igbedi, Bayelsa state told graduates “I loved the Lincoln experience.”
He urged them to create their own future “instead of waiting for it to unfold.”
“Leave a legacy behind just like the ones you met, but even greater than that, discover yourself.”
Perewari illustrated his point by using the life of Joseph. “It was the life of a dreamer.” he said.” “One who knew where he would be, but had no idea what the process would look like.”
He told graduates to turn and look at all the people in the crowd. “There are people who have sacrificed beyond measure to make sure we are better than they are now. There are those whose dream is that you be something. That is enough motivation to continue on your dreams and to continue with the fire and passion for it.”
More than 400 students graduated at the event, in which another Nigerian Olutoyin Olowookere, president of Student Government Association, introduced the Commencement speaker and one of two honorary degree recipients, Roger W. Ferguson, Jr., who is the president and chief executive officer of TIAA, a leading provider of retirement services in the academia.
Nigeria’s first president Nnamdi Azikiwe also attended Lincoln University.
Lincoln University was founded in 1854 as America’s first degree-granting Historically Black College and University, or HBCU. Originally chartered as Ashmun Institute, it was re-named Lincoln University in 1866 in honor of President Abraham Lincoln.