I love hearing stories about ladies smashing stereotypes in career and leadership. It is refreshing and inspiring to read about and it spurs other women to aspire to more. As much as I love reading about brilliant successful women who are currently making waves in the society, I believe that becoming a daring female leader is not something that just happens at the peak of your career. It is something you start building from an early age. Then, in the university, what you have learned all through childhood and teenagerhood is tested and refined. By the time you graduate, you are more equipped to face the world.
Ladies in school is a series that is dedicated to showcasing female high achievers who are still students. It focuses on ladies in school who are driven, motivated, and full of passion. These ladies have dreams and aspirations and are working towards achieving their goals. Ladies who are passionate about volunteering, leadership and are doing great things despite being in school.
By sharing these stories, I hope to inspire female students all over the country. I want to show these students that their dreams and pursuits are valid and they are not alone. So they should keep working hard, defying stereotypes, and getting things done.
Today’s edition focuses on Zaynab Bakare. She is an Agric Economist, a product manager, a talent management enthusiast, a strategic business developer, an advocate for the SDGs, a youth leader, and a volunteer with AIESEC. She has served as a political stakeholder and is currently a student commissioner at the University of Ilorin’s anti- corrupt practices commission. Read on to learn more about her journey as a student, her vision for impact, her perspectives, and what pushes her to go on.
Did you choose to study Agric Economics or it just happened?
• I didn’t choose Agriculture. As a matter of fact, my being in Agric was a dramatic one. I applied for Pharmacy and changed to Chemistry due to the cut-off mark. When I got to school, I had to start taking lectures for Statistics, then we went home for December break and I discovered that I was moved to Agriculture. I didn’t choose it, the will of God (I presume) just prevailed.
Why did you join AISCEC and how does the organization relate to your future goals and plans?
• AIESEC, wow
Till date, I don’t think I can pinpoint exactly why I joined AIESEC. Not to sound cliché, I just clicked with the organization and that was it. The AIESEC experience is one of the best experiences ever. It aligns with my future goals because I have been prepared for things average students weren’t knowledgeable of. Through the program, I gained soft skills, hard skills and I became intentional about being self-aware which makes me conscious of where I am, where I am going, and where I would possibly be.
AIESEC contributed majorly to that.
What impact will you create on the next generation?
• Impact on the next generation.
I have led more than 40 youths in developing their selves and facilitating their experiences in the self-acclaimed path. My major impact in the next generation is organizing and developing ways, events that touch youths, the pending problems, and being a solution provider.
How do you hope to combine all your amazing experiences in the future?
• The future to me, personally, is vague because who truly knows the future? I can say for now that I plan to channel my experiences, particularly teen leadership, and for that to happen, I have to invest in gaining more experiences that will fetch income.
What does volunteering mean to you?
• Volunteering is part of every individual. It is in the little things around or outside of you.
How you take it further now depends on the person.
To me, volunteering is love, it is affection, it is care and it is humanity.
Life as a student, what was it like?
Dynamic. That’s the word I would use. You don’t foresee future actions, you basically go as it leads.
What were the major ups for you in school?
Personally, every role I have taken up, from leadership to politics and the network in people I have met, I take that with high importance.
Do you have particular motivations in school, either in person or things?
My highest motivation would have to be my mum, hers tops the list for me.
I believe it has been an interesting reading about Zaynab Bakare. To get in touch with her, connect with her on these social media platforms:
Twitter : https://twitter.com/ZaynabABakare