Online coursework and gatherings saved Adekunle three hours of travel and helped him spend more time with family
Adekunle Bakare lives in Nigeria with his wife and two sons and works for an oil and gas servicing company. He always hoped to continue his education, and the flexibility that online learning through BYU-Pathway Worldwide provides made those hopes a reality for him.
The impossible becoming possible
When he first heard about BYU-Pathway, Adekunle was discouraged because it didn’t seem possible for him to participate — at the time, all gatherings were in person. It took him three hours to get from work to his home, which made it nearly impossible for him to make it to the gathering on time. Even if he could get to the gathering, he wouldn’t return home until 10:00 or 11:00 p.m. Spending time with his family was too important for Adekunle to make this kind of sacrifice, and the financial burden of this amount of transportation would be too great on his family.
So when BYU-Pathway started offering virtual gatherings, Adekunle felt as though they were created just for him! After hearing about it, he “didn’t think twice at all!” He enrolled right away and found it was just what he had been waiting for.
Learning in his home around his family is very valuable to Adekunle. He said, “My granddad told me that there are times that you are home and you may not be able to talk to your family, but you are there and they notice a sense of relief. They are happy. They are together.”
Being able to earn a degree online through BYU-Pathway is not only a blessing to his family, but to Adekunle as well. Having more time with his family relieves a lot of stress. He said, “Virtual learning gave me the opportunity to comfortably play my role in the family and still be able to achieve my goal in pushing my career.”
Skills for the future
Online learning has been incredibly convenient for Adekunle, and it's also helped teach him important skills. He said, “Virtual learning will push you to learn technology, how to engage with systems and do some exciting things!”
Adekunle saw the immediate benefits of these new skills when the COVID pandemic started early in 2020 and the company he works at started having a lot of virtual meetings. He was already prepared to use the software and have productive interactions because of his online BYU-Pathway coursework!
Adekunle is just starting his certificate in medical billing and coding fundamentals from Ensign College, supported by BYU-Pathway, to help him get a better job. But all of the skills he’s learning are also contributing to his biggest dream of inventing something someday. “It may be small. It may be very little. But at least then I can say to the world that this was made by me,” Adekunle said. He has learned important skills that will help him get there.
He is excited about the things he’s learning and shares them whenever he can. Adekunle said, “Every time I see something educational or interesting, I call my wife!” To him, one of the greatest blessings of the education is learning and improving alongside his family. “I didn’t know BYU-Pathway could be a blessing to my family, aside from my learning!”
Courage, hard work, and faith
Adekunle initially wondered how he’d be able to progress when he already had so much going on in life, but he said, “I hope my story will lift others up — it’s achievable and you can make it! Education is possible for you also.”
Courage, hard work, and relying on the Lord have gotten him a long way! Adekunle said, “It’s better to try than not try at all! Any time you face a difficult situation, it is better to address it than ignore it. Things you think are impossible can become possible, and you can get more from them than you thought you could.”