Thursday, 18 January 2018



Nigerian Students Poetry Prize (NSPP) is an initiative of Poets in Nigeria (PIN) designed to stimulate creativity, promote literary excellence and broaden the concept of intellectualism among Nigerian undergraduates. Since inception in 2016 at the Students’ Union Building, University of Ibadan, the prize has received over 1000 entries from students drawn from over 100 tertiary institutions, cementing its place as the nation’s foremost poetry platform for students.

The 3rd edition of the prize opens for submissions from 15th January to 28th February, 2018. Building on the success of the 2017 edition of the awards ceremony hosted by University of Nigeria, Enugu Campus (UNEC), winners of the 2018 edition will be awarded in May at Godfrey Okoye University, Enugu. Previous winners of the prize include Noah Oladele (Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife), Chinelo Nwangwu (University of Ibadan) and Chisom Okafor (University of Nigeria, Nsukka) in 2016; Bakre Fadil Adedamola (University of Ibadan), Ajah Henry Ekene (University of Benin) and Bona Solomon (University of Ibadan) in 2017.

Aside rewarding the top three entrants who also double as prize winners with a total cash prize of ₦300,000, the top 100 entrants will be featured in a globally distributed anthology.


1st Prize – ₦150,000

2nd Prize – ₦100,000

3rd Prize – ₦50,000
The 2018 edition of the prize is sponsored by Godfrey Okoye University, Enugu.

Open to all Nigerian undergraduates studying in Nigeria and the diaspora.
Entrants must be from a recognized tertiary institution.

Submissions are to be made at, with strict adherence to the instructions thereon.
Poems must be original, intellectual property of the entrants.
An entrant is entitled to a single entry of 30 lines maximum.
There are no fixed themes.
Entries submitted must be previously unpublished. A submission discovered to have defaulted on this rule will be automatically voided (inclusive of winners).
All entrants are expected to purchase either one or both editions of the anthology of the top 100 entries uploaded on the submission portal.
Under no condition will the judges’ decision be challenged.
Entering for the contest gives PIN automatic right to make use of entries as deemed appropriate.
Entries must be written in English. Native terminologies must be translated in English as footnotes.
Entrants should subscribe to for regular updates.

For enquiries,
contact the moderator – Phone: +2347034847164; Email:

Submission Deadline: 28th February, 2018

Kolade Olanrewaju Freedom

Moderator, NSPP 2018

Monday, 1 January 2018


Amazingly, it’s that time. A new year, right on schedule — again. This is the time of year so many of us start making resolutions to change a certain area, or multiple areas in our lives. Maybe we have some extra pounds to shed. We might be committed to changing a specific, harmful behavior. New Year’s resolutions range from simple desires to seemingly full-proof-plans for extensive life change. What we all have in common is the hope that something will change, and life will be different (and better) in the year ahead.

Every year, people ring in the New Year with goals to live life differently on some level. However, a few short weeks later, many of these very same well-wishers end up discouraged and filled with shame and remorse over their failed attempts to make their resolutions come to pass. Who knows? This may be the second, third, fourth, or 15th year someone has tried to “kick the habit.” After so many misguided attempts, why would they even want to try again?

That’s a good question. First consider a few additional questions…
What if every spring, the flowers just gave up on blooming?
What if the local birds that have migrated to some faraway place just decided to stay put on that tropical island?
What if the sun chose to hide behind the clouds all summer long?
Worse yet: what if Christ had not come to earth as a baby or hadn’t risen from the dead?

I don’t know about you, but I sure love fragrant flowers, sweet singing birds are pretty nice, and, oh, how I love that summer sun smiling down on me, but the thought of a Christ not defeating death is downright terrifying. Without His resurrection power, we really would have no hope for permanent life change — ever.

However, He was born. He died. And He most definitely did rise again.

That means this year, this month, today, or even this moment, is filled with hope for a better future — in Him. We don’t have to white-knuckle it anymore. Whatever your “it” might be, you too can turn from your sin, and release it into the capable hands of the ultimate Life-Changer.

When we desire change, we have the perfect example to follow: Jesus Christ. When we are ready to implement change, we have the perfect guide book: His Word. Finally, we have the perfect power source to strengthen our resolve: His Spirit.

As we pursue change God’s way, hope for a better future is no longer a dream; it becomes our reality. We truly can experience freedom in our lives today, tomorrow, and forever. With Christ, we don’t have to wait for another New Year to roll around, or for the big glittery ball to drop in Times Square. His mercy is new every morning. We can pursue our own new beginning right now.

FREEDOM is an acronym that will assist you as you start your new journey. For it is in our relationship with a loving, redeeming God, where we will find the freedom we so desperately yearn for.

Follow Him forward:

"May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus…" (Romans 15:5).

We are to follow Christ. As we pursue Him and seek to imitate His ways, we move forward in our process of change. No more slip-sliding backwards. When we truly follow Jesus, we are on the path that moves forward and upward, one prayer at a time.

Repent readily:

"But if they repent of their wicked lives, I will think twice and start over with them" (Jeremiah 18:9, MSG).

When we repent, God will think again and start over with us. A new beginning… exactly what we are seeking. When we admit and repent of our shortcomings, and sinfulness, God is faithful to forgive and make us white like snow. Clean. Fresh. New. Don’t wait another moment — repent.

Earnestly Pray:

"Pray at all times and on every occasion in the power of the Holy Spirit. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all Christians everywhere" (Ephesians 6:18, NLT).

Prayers are incredibly powerful. They are the foundation for any life change we desire. As we earnestly pray, we will find ourselves empowered by the one true power source. There is no better time to pray than right now. Let us pray persistently, remaining alert, and consider our Christian brothers and sisters everywhere. After all, we are on this journey together.

Enjoy the journey:

"Then Hannah prayed: 'My heart rejoices in the Lord! Oh, how the Lord has blessed me! Now I have an answer for my enemies, as I delight in your deliverance'" (1 Samuel 2:1, NLT).

As we travel down the road of renewal, receiving answers from God along the way, we will have a number of reasons to rejoice. Many times we are so focused on the destination, that we forget to enjoy the journey. When we take a road trip, even though the driving might be daunting, dangerous, or just plain boring, if we take the time to truly see the unique beauty of the surrounding landscape, we may discover the journey can be enjoyed almost as much as the destination. Enjoy God’s journey. He has planned a perfect path just for you.

Devour His Word:

"For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart" (Hebrews 4:12).

God’s Word is the ultimate food for our thoughts, nourishment for our souls, and the map we must follow on our journey down the path of new beginnings. We know when our stomach growls, it is a signal for us to nourish our body with food. So it is when our spirit's “growl,” we need to dive into God’s truth and devour His words like the sustaining substance they were created to be.

Open your heart and mind to His truth

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding" (Proverbs 3:5).

In order to grasp God’s truth, we need to pray for an open heart and an open mind, in order to better receive the truth, know the truth, and obey the truth when we hear it. Be prepared to hear the Lord speak. He will.

Make new friends and move mountains:

"Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you" (Colossians 3:12-13).

As we walk in godly love for one another, by forgiving, encouraging, and helping, we will find the strength to do what one person alone could never, ever accomplish. We need the power of the Spirit, and the power of each other. Together, we can move mountains! Often, our new beginning and long sought after freedom rests just on the other side of the highest peek. But together, we can make it through the roughest terrain. We were never meant to “go it” alone. Jesus had 12 disciples. He knew the value of loving and supporting relationships. Let us learn from His example.

As we’ve discovered, change can be challenging, but this New Year, as we journey together down the road to freedom, let’s stay focused on the One guiding us: Christ.

Friday, 29 December 2017

If You Don't Know What To Do With Your Life, Read This.

Sometimes in life, we find ourselves at a dead end. Or a crossroads. Or on a path that seems to go nowhere. No matter what stage you are at in life, if you are unhappy with it, or unsure as to how to proceed, then you need to reevaluate.

You can’t figure out the whole future.

Remember, you don’t know what’s coming next. Life is full of interesting twists and turns, but if we continually pursue things that we enjoy doing whether for a job or hobby, it will make the journey interesting and more fun. Maybe you enjoy making jewelry right now. Maybe you can sell it. In five years, you might be a successful jewelry designer or you might have moved on to another craft. It doesn’t matter. You have the experience of your jewelry design to fall back on and help you with other projects in the future.

Try to be comfortable with discomfort.

Sometimes life is uncomfortable. Sometimes we don’t have enough money to do all of the things we want to do. If you have something you really want to pursue, then you must be able to live with some amount of discomfort in order to do that.

Life is uncertain. Go with it.

Stuff happens.Take uncertainty and turn it on its head. Every bad thing is an opportunity to make something good happen.

Overcome distractions. Stop procrastinating.

You’re not getting younger. Sorry, but it’s true. If you don’t start taking the time to pursue your dreams, you might find yourself at the end of your life with nothing to show for it but a lot of Facebook posts and a bunch of TV shows you just had to watch. If you are serious about pursuing a dream — whether it’s acting, being a motivational speaker or being a rich and famous computer guru, you better get on it. Take those first steps. Turn off your Facebook notifications and get working. You won’t get anywhere merely thinking about how great you could be.

Ask yourself questions.

Take some time for yourself. Learn about yourself. Meditate. Write down the things that interest you and things you could see yourself doing if time and money were no object. Dream big. Quiet your mind and really imagine yourself doing those things.

Volunteer or shadow someone.

If there is a job or hobby you are interested in — from grooming dogs to being a zookeeper — volunteer or job shadow and see if it’s an occupation you really want to do. All the dreaming in the world isn’t going to help you if you don’t go and get your hands dirty. Sometimes, we think we want to do something and then once we try it, we realize it might not be the kind of work we like after all. Or it might be more involved than we realized. It’s important to get hands-on experience and do a lot of reading by those with first-hand experience before we give up our current life to pursue a dream.

Save up.

If you need to move or go to school to pursue your new dream, it might be pertinent to get a job doing something — anything — and save up the money to allow you to do it. I worked for many years to build my writing and editing portfolio and I now I can write and edit articles from my wee little cabin, get paid, and use the money to pay for the equipment and food I need to run my dogsled team. Would I love to be able to make money just from running dogs? Sure. But it’s not possible right now while I’m building and training my team. I don’t have a reputation in dog mushing yet, but I do have a reputation in writing. So I do one job I love to pay for the other.

Answer the door.

Opportunity may be knocking but if you don’t answer the door, how can you take advantage of it? You must take opportunities when they are presented to you. Sometimes it’s not the right time, but it doesn’t matter. Opportunities happen when they happen. Answer the door or that opportunity might walk on by and knock on someone else’s door.

The most important thing to remember when trying to figure out what do with your life is that no action is an action in and of itself. You must make decisions and try things — even if you end up hating them or wanting to do something else. At the end of your life, you won’t regret trying things and failing, but you will regret not ever trying at all.

Close that laptop and go get your life.

Culled from

2018 International Student Scholarships At York University, Canada

The York University, a public research university in Toronto, Ontario, Canada is accepting applications from International applicants who are looking to acquire an Undergraduate degree program at the Institution.

This program is administered by York International and assists current international students who are experiencing financial need.

Application Deadline
: January 20, 2018

Eligible Countries: International


Applicants must Be in good academic standing

Applicants must have Experienced financial difficulty through unforeseen circumstances

Applicants must be Be beyond their first year of study

,Applicants must have international student status (studying at York on a valid Study Permit and paying international fees)

Applicants must Be registered and pursuing an undergraduate degree

Applicants must Be enrolled in courses at the time of application

Application Process: Click here to apply

For More Information Visit The Scholarship Website

It's Okay For Boys To Be Emotional. It's Actually Good.

By Anna ChuiAnna is a communication expert and a life enthusiast

Fostering different emotions holds a lot of advantages for health as adults, research has shown. However, it appears we are starting to realise this a little too late. Notably, there is a significant lack of emotional diversity in children, especially young boys. We often box them unnecessarily in shackles that will do them no good when they become adults. These same shackles, we try to break off when they become adults, but it turns out difficult for them and for us to let go as it appears quite often, that we have only managed to shine light on only one part of the emotions they’ve been blessed with, their anger. We leave other emotions vulnerable. We do not teach boys to love and feel loved, to feel compassion, empathy, kindness, etc. Emotional expression by all genders holds great benefits beyond psychological health benefits, unlike emotional suppression that comes with dire consequences.


The United Bank for Africa (UBA) through its Campus Ambassador programme offers a unique opportunity for students of tertiary institutions in Nigeria and across Africa.

The programme enables participating students to be part of a dynamic and forward thinking Pan-African bank by representing the brand on campus.

The Banks says the initiative is part of the commitment in developing creativity and leadership abilities amongst young people in the continent of Africa.

The programme is designed to be a learning experience and a highly rewarding one for selected students while providing them a platform to build their leadership capabilities and showcase their diverse talents.

Application for the 2018 programme has commenced. To complete your registration, you will need to fill some relevant personal information.

First, ensure you are following @ubagroup on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Upload a video on your personal page of how your skills and experiences are relevant to the role and how you can help make a difference, using the hash tag #UBACampusAmbassador.

Make sure you tag @UBAGroup in your video.

The Bank will not consider your registration if you have not followed due process.

Click here to commence application; entry closes December 31, 2017.

Monday, 27 November 2017

SPDC-JV University Scholarship Scheme For Nigerians - 2018

Are you an Undergraduate Student? Are you looking towards getting a scholarship to study in a Nigerian Institution? If yes, here is one for you;

Applications are invited for the SPDC-JV University Scholarship Scheme which is offered by The Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited (Operator of the NNPC/SPDC /TEPNG/AGIP Joint Venture).

This scholarship program is provided to Nigerians who have interest in pursuing an Undergraduate degree program in any Nigerian University.

This scholarship is in two categories – the National Merit Award (NM) and the Areas of Operation Merit Award.

(i) National Merit Award (NM) Open to all Nigerians.

(ii) Areas of Operation Merit Award For Nigerians who are indigenes of SPDC’s operational area in Abia, Bayelsa, Delta, Imo and Rivers States

Application Deadline: Wednesday December 20, 2017.


- Applicants must be citizens of the Federal Republic of Nigeria

- Applicants must be registered FULL TIME undergraduates in

- Applicants must be a student of an accredited and approved University in Nigeria

- Applicants must have a minimum of five credits, at one sitting, including O/Levels Mathematics and English

- Applicants must have a minimum of 200 score in UTME

- Applicants must be in 200 level with a minimum grade CGPA of 2.5

Application Process

Interested applicants are advised to take the following:

- All applicants should have their personal valid email account (for consistent communication).

- All applications must be done online, via to apply

- Scanned copies of letters of identification, (which must be duly stamped and signed) by:
i)The Paramount Ruler of the Community;
ii)The Chairman of the Community Development or Executive Council (CDC or CEC).

This is also required of applicants for the Operational Area Awards. The letters should be addressed to The Manager, Social Investment, Shell Petroleum Development Company, Port Harcourt.

Please Note:-

a) There will be no selection test (selection is based on combined academic performance) and ONLY shortlisted candidates will be contacted
b) Shell does not demand payment from applicants and does not assign ‘agents’ or ‘representatives’ to assist applicants.
c) Maximum document size must be 200KB and image format must be JPEG.

Visit The Official Website For More Information

How Simply Jotting Down Ideas Can Make You Smarter

An adult has an average of 50,000 thoughts every day. Now try to recall 100 of those thoughts from earlier today. Pretty hard, right?

It’s normal to forget most of them as our brains have to filter out unnecessary information so that we don’t go insane. 1 The problem is that we forget a lot of great ideas along the way.

Great ideas often come when a person is unprepared

Most of the time great ideas come when your brain is in “diffused mode”: Thoughts come to you in this state when you’re not intently focused, like when you’re daydreaming or zoning out in the shower. Creative ideas come to us during this state of mind because this is when our minds are the most relaxed. This is when our brains connect different neural pathways to come up with brand new ideas (the same as how creativity allows us to connect the dots, our brains do this naturally in this state). The problem is that because our brains are so relaxed, there’s no intention to mark down ideas that come along.

Never trust your brain: it’s bad at memory

Very often the ideas that come to us during diffuse mode can be a bit abstract. Out of the box thinking, if you will. This is your best content. The high level, creative, new ideas that are going to take the world by storm.

Remember the genius, ground-breaking idea you came up with in the shower? The one that was going to revolutionize the world as we know it? Of course you can’t remember. Your monumental idea slipped through the cracks of your memory, never to be heard from again because you didn’t take the time to write it down.

In today’s race against time, we just can’t spare an extra moment to jot down the ideas that constantly pass through our heads. Some people may think that it’s even a waste of time. We think that if the thought is that important, we will remember it later and put it into action. But we don’t. And we’re just left with that empty vagueness- “I know I was on to something, what was it again?”

Don’t be lazy, jot down the great idea no matter how confident you are that you’ll remember it

Keep recording tools within reach, but not directly in sight. If you set out a notebook and pen directly in front of you, you are no longer in diffuse mode and thoughts are not free flowing. But you want the notebook to be close enough, so that when the thoughts do come to you, it takes very little mental and physical effort to quickly jot them down.

Smartphone apps such as Evernote are a great option for this. Some others are recording apps, a waterproof notebook for the shower, your laptop, or simply a notebook and pen (this is my personal favorite, more authentic.)

Resist the urge to organize

It’s so easy to fall into the trap of immediately organizing your thoughts as they come to you. Don’t do it. Organizing is a separate task for later, when you switch into focus mode (the opposite of diffuse mode).

Stick to the process of free thinking and writing down ideas and leaving them alone until later. If you try to organize them as they come, you’ll lose many ideas because you are too focused on a single idea. You’ll also lose motivation because you’re loading yourself up with work and complicating the process.

Review your ideas from time to time

Now that you have the ideas written down, you need to reinforce the ideas to turn them into something bigger. You should review your ideas around 3 times a week.

While reviewing you can filter out some of the less useful ideas, organize them, and start developing the potentially successful ones.

Remember, most people have plenty of great ideas, just very few of them bother to jot them down. And those who do are the ones who succeed.

Tuesday, 21 November 2017


Born 16th July in Lagos Nigeria, He Attended Igbobi College, Yaba, Lagos (1989-1990) and University of Lagos Akoka (1992-1998) where he graduated with a degree in Economics.

Bankole Bernard is the founder and Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Finchglow Travels Limited/FCm Nigeria. He with the support of other directors founded the company in 2006 after leaving his seemingly lucrative career in the bank.

He worked in the banking industry for eight (8) years in various reputable banks such as EcoBank, Metropolitan Bank and left in 2006 as a Branch Manager for First Atlantic Bank (FinBank). He was efficient in supervising his team members and ensuring maximum productivity in order to surpass set targets.

Today, Bankole is responsible for making policies to guide his organization as well as creating a sustainable working environment for employees and ensuring the successful day-to-day running of the company to promote its growth in all eight (8) branches of the Organization across Nigeria.

Bankole Bernard was able to secure an exclusive franchise of a global Travel Management Company, FCm Travel Solutions, based in Australia with presence in 93 countries across continents. FCM is one of the top five TMCs in the world. He established this relationship in order to expand the reach of his business to ensure the company gives only the best to its esteemed clients. He has also been able to establish partnerships with companies in the Middle East, Europe, USA and most parts of Africa.

Finchglow Travels is named in the Top 3 amongst about 1500 registered travel agencies/travel management companies in Nigeria. By merit, Bankole enjoys solid relationships with all airlines having been able to creatively carve a niche in what appeared to be an already saturated industry. Finchglow has been consistent in service delivery and growth and this is evident in the many awards received by the company over the years.

He is also the Chairman of Travelden Nigeria Limited, an online Travel portal and Southoak Aviation Services, Lagos Aviation Academy, Finchglow Holidays and PrysmInvestments.

He served as the Financial Secretary of National Association for Nigerian Travel Agents (NANTA) from 2010 till 2014. During his tenure, he was able to lay a foundation for restructuring of the Secretarial office and also efficiently organize a fund-raising for the newly completed National Secretariat.

He is the National President of National Association of Nigeria Travel Agencies (NANTA).

He is also a member of the highest ruling body in the travel business, Airline and Passenger joint committee (APJC) and also the Treasurer of SKAL International Lagos

✓ Qatar Airways gold certificate award to FinchglowTravel Ltd. for outstanding contribution during 2010-2011
✓ Virgin Atlantic Country Manager’s award for outstanding performance for year 2011/2012
✓ South African Airways platinum award in recognition of Finchglow Travel’s outstanding performance in 2012
✓ South African Airways platinum award in recognition of Finchglow Travel’s outstanding performance in 2013
✓ South African Airways platinum award in recognition of Finchglow Travel’s outstanding performance in 2014
✓ South African Airways platinum award in recognition of Finchglow Travel’s outstanding performance in 2015
✓ Lufthansa top agent award for 2012 to Finchglowtravels
✓ Etihad certificate of appreciation to Finchglow Travels Ltd. for outstanding performance during the launch of Etihad airways in Nigeria
✓ Delta Airline diamond award to Finchglow Travels Ltd. for outstanding sales performance from January-March 2013
✓ Virgin Atlantic platinum achievement award in recognition of outstanding performance in 2013
✓ Ethiopian Airline agency award to Finchglow Travels Ltd. in recognition of contribution and support to Ethiopian Airline in 2013
✓ Arik Air excellence award to Finchglow Travels Ltd. as one of the top 3 travel agents in 2013
✓ Hahn Air awards to Finchglow Travels Ltd. as top selling agent 2014
✓ Asky silver agency award to Finchglow Travels Ltd. in recognition of outstanding performance in 2013-2014
✓ Airfrance/KLM Swagga competition award to Finchglow Travels Ltd. in recognition of our achievement as having the 3rd highest revenue growth in 2013 IATA year

Saturday, 4 November 2017

Dealing with Exam Stress

Stressed out about exams? Stress can show itself in many ways. Some of the common signs are your heart racing, stomach cramps, trouble sleeping, losing your appetite or overeating. Here's some tips to help you chill out.

Start studying early

Start studying as soon as your teacher announces the exam. Even before that, read over your notes after each class to make sure you understand them. Put the notes in your own words.

You can prepare even more by thinking of questions that your teacher might ask on an exam. Write the questions down and answer them after your class is finished. This will make studying easier.

Have a plan to manage your time

Cramming all night doesn't usually work. Plan your study time ahead so you'll feel confident for the exam.

Plan to have enough time to study about 50 minutes at a time with five or 10-minute breaks. Have a snack, watch some TV or go for a walk. Study so you understand the material and not just to memorize it. Plan to study in a place where you can concentrate without distractions.

Be healthy

Studies show that taking the time to get some exercise and eating healthy improves performance on exams. So get out and get moving. When we're stressed we sometimes want to eat junk food but eating healthy will actually make you feel better.

Also, get enough sleep - especially in the days before your exam. Good sleep helps you remember what you learned.

Practice, practice, practice

Ask your teacher for a practice test. If there isn't one, make your own. Answer the questions with friends and grade each other's work.

Chill out, try these relaxation techniques

Think about the stress you're feeling. Write down your stressful thoughts.

Whenever a stressful thought pops into your head, replace it with a positive one. For example, replace "I'm going to fail this exam" with "I'm going to study early so I can ace this exam."

Also, you may want to practice deep breathing. Take a few deep breaths, breathing from deep within your abdomen and not just your chest. Let them slowly out. This will get more air into your lungs and will help you relax.

Visualize success

This one might seem a little out there, but sometimes it helps to imagine success. Think of yourself writing the exam and knowing the answers. Visualize the A+ on the paper after writing the exam. When you imagine yourself being successful, you're more likely to succeed. But don't just visualize studying - you actually have to do it!

Talk to someone

If you find that you're still stressed, talk to someone you trust, whether it's a parent, teacher, school counsellor or friend. They will help you put things in perspective.

Taking the exam

Scan each page of the exam before starting to make sure you have all the questions. This will also help you decide how much time you'll need to complete it.

Read all the instructions on the exam. Do the questions you can answer first to make sure you get the marks for them.

Pace yourself. Stay until the end of the exam in case you remember an answer. Go back, review your answers, and remember the relaxation techniques you learned. Breathe!

Monday, 16 October 2017

Hard Work Won't Make You Successful -- But Doing This Will

I don't blame anyone who has become frustrated and disillusioned with the working world. It is a huge disappointment to grow up and realize that most of what we've been taught about how to be successful is bad advice.

We were taught "Just work hard at whatever job you get, and things will work out." That's false. Working hard at your job or school does not get you much. When you work hard at a job or school where the boss or teacher doesn't value your efforts, all your hard work gets you is taken for granted. Just working hard by itself will exhaust you and shorten your lifespan without any benefits to you.

There has to be more to success than merely working hard, or millions of people around the world would be a lot more successful than they are!

If you are at work right now, think about the investment of time and energy you are making. Imagine that you only went home to sleep for four hours a night, and gave up all the rest of your personal time to get more work done. Imagine that you practically lived at your desk and worked your tail off for the next five years. What would that extraordinary effort get you?

You're not going to get paid more just because you have great ideas. None of those investments on your part translate into tangible success.

We can see that there's more to success than just hard work -- so what's the magic ingredient?

The magic ingredient to success is not the good fortune to come from a wealthy family, and it isn't a great education, either, as plenty of underemployed but highly-educated people can attest. The magic ingredient for career success and satisfaction is self-determination. When you are the captain of the ship, you get to decide which way to sail. That's the only way to be successful in your career.

Career self-determination doesn't require you to start your own business. My friend Mike has been insanely successful in his career working for well-known employers. What makes Mike successful is that he decides what he wants to do next rather than letting the job ads or inertia decide for him.

When one job has given Mike all it's got to give, he moves on. He doesn't really care what his boss thinks about his performance. He cares what impact he's making at work -- impact that he can talk about later, with other employers, when it's time to move on!

That is really all that matters, because his boss's only influence on Mike is the influence the boss holds while Mike is actually working for that boss, and Mike never plans on staying at any organization for more than five years.

Mike is self-employed in his own mind, although he works for other people. He loves his career, has plenty of time off, gets paid very well and best of all, is healthy and happy.

Mike is not a suck-up or someone who needs to get external approval to feel good about himself. He simply knows what kinds of Business Pain he solves for employers, and that knowledge makes him very valuable as well as content in his own skin.

Mike did not come from a well-to-do family or attend a top-tier college. He follows these ten rules for career success, and you can do the same thing.

Ten Rules for Achieving Career Self-Determination

1. You'll start by creating a vision for your life and career. Your vision can change over time and it undoubtedly will, but at every point you'll be following a path that you laid out for yourself rather than somebody else's plan for you, or no plan at all.

2. When you need money and you can't find a career-type job, take a survival job. Don't make the mistake of deciding, "Now that I have this low-level job, I'm a low-level employee. I'll have to beg and grovel to get a better job." Use the survival job to earn enough money to live on while you're seeking a better job. Never, ever turn off the "available" light on your taxi cab!

3. Decide for yourself what you want to do next at each point in your career. Don't be seduced by a manager who tells you, "You could have a great career in this company!" Talk is cheap. Stay in control of your forward motion and if it slows down to an unacceptable degree, move on!

4. Know yourself. Most folks rely on other people to tell them what they should be doing professionally. If you want to achieve career self-determination, you have to be honest with yourself and you have to look in the mirror. You don't have to feel bad about anything in your past, because it is impossible to make a mistake as long as you get the learning from every experience.

5. When you take a new job, make sure it's because you like and trust the people, not because they offer you a fancy title or a big salary. A lot of jobs that look good from the outside are rotten on the inside and will make you sick. Listen to your gut above every other guide!

6. Keep in mind that you are a consultant and the CEO of your own career, whether you work for a big corporation, a tiny startup or yourself. How you get paid is a detail. Mike remained the CEO of his own career through six or eight job changes and he's not ready to give up that title yet!

7. Get a consulting business card and begin to think of yourself as a consultant who solves problems for clients, even if you're not ready to take on clients yet. Give out your consulting business card instead of any business card your employer gives you. Make a plan for your fledgling consulting business. What kinds of services will you offer? What problems will you solve for your clients? How much will you charge them for your services?

8. Get a journal and write in it every day or as often as you have time. Write about your career and your plans for your life. Write about your goals and setbacks. Write about your feelings and your dreams and ideas. You are cooking up something magnificent. Get it out of your head and onto the page!

9. Choose carefully who to spend time with. Your time is your most precious resource. Spend as much time as possible with people who grow your flame and avoid people who suck your life force away.

10. Finally, find your voice and advocate for yourself. Every successful person has had to face a lot of naysayers and haters and they've had to walk away from situations that were not a good fit. You will not be successful by trying to please everyone or by letting yourself become a doormat. Speak up and say what you feel. Not everyone will like it. You might even get fired once or twice. It's not a big deal and getting fired will actually make you stronger and more convicted. To be successful, you have to give up the idea that you can play it safe and still achieve your dreams.

Life is temporary. Every job is temporary, too.

You get to decide how to spend every year, every month and every minute of your precious time. You get to decide when to let other people steer your ship and when to grab the wheel.

This moment is the perfect time to take back control of your career and start running your working life as a business -- what are you waiting for?

Culled from 

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

NNPC/Total National Merit Scholarship Scheme For Nigerians - 2018

Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), and Total Upstream Companies in Nigeria (TUCN): Total Exploration & Production Nigeria Limited (Total E&P Nig Ltd) and Total Upstream Nigeria Limited (TUPNI) are offering the 2018 NNPC/TOTAL National Merit Scholarship programme to Nigerian Undergraduates.

The Total Scholarship scheme is aimed at promoting academic excellence and quality manpower development in the Country.


- Applicants must be a Registered FULL TIME undergraduate in a recognized Nigerian University.

- Applicants must be a certified 100 or 200 level student at the time of application.

- Applicants must have a 2.50 CGPA of 5-point scale, or equivalent.

Application Process

To apply for this scholarship click here.

The following documents are required when applying:

- Recent Passport Photograph

- Certificate or Proof of Origin

- Senior Secondary Certificate of Education (SSCE)

- UTME result

- JAMB/University Admission Letter

- 1st Year Result showing CGPA

Application Deadline

Applications will close on October 31, 2017. Selection tests will hold on December 2, 2017 at designated centers nationwide which will be communicated to shortlisted candidates only. Candidates will fully bear the cost transportation to test venue as no reimbursement shall be made.

Candidates are therefore advised to choose a test center closest to them.

For more information visit the official page