Dr PriscaNdu is a successful corporate women. for very many years, she was a Banker. She recently turned 47 and she spoke about her life. She hails from Arochukwu in Abia State, from an interesting family of 7 where they had 5 girls and only 2 boys. Prisca is the mother of a 19-year-old guy who is currently studying at Embirido Aeronautic University in Florida. Although she is an orphan, she doesn’t look it because she has so much love around her. Her siblings and her close allies often rally round her when the need arises. One can affirm that Prisca exhibits joy always.
This pretty woman is deeply spiritual. She has been a strong member of the House on the Rock Church ably led by Pastor Paul Adefarasin, where her membership has spanned over 20 years.
She started her stellar career in aviation later proceeded into bank, oil and gas and other industries.
On Wednesday, April 28, 2021, she hosted a very small party at her Lekki apartment to celebrate her 47th birthday. It was a great time. Everyone had fun. City People’s DAMILARE SALAMI 08155134152 was equally there and he had an exclusive interview with this delectable public figure, as she reveals a lot about the things she did right to make it to the top of her career and what young people that are aspiring to get up there could do irrespective of the kind of environment they have found themselves.
Below are some of the excerpts from the interview.
It sounds like you’ve had mixed experience in life…
Cuts in… Absolutely, I mean, you can’t come this far in life and having had to climb some hills and go down some valleys, there would have been some high peaks and low depths as well. But in everything, just as we have it in my Christian faith, I give thanks to God. I can’t exchange my life for anybody’s. I’m glad for everything I’ve been able to achieve through the grace of God. I can say that I’m a very resilient person, I don’t see challenges, I only see them as inspirations to greater heights, that’s how I’ve been able to get to where I am today. Having set very high goals for myself, I’m celebrating not just my 47th birthday today, I’m also celebrating the completion of my Ph.D. in credit management and also a honorary doctor of business administration that was conferred on me so it’s a double doctorate degree that I’m celebrating today to the glory of God.
47 years is a milestone. Tell us what life has taught you in 47 years…
It has taught me to stay true to myself, my family is first in my life after God, I was brought up in a very strong Christian home so everything I have today is to the glory of God. So I can say that in everything I’ve experienced, what life has taught me is that a good name is better than all the wealth you can accumulate. Because I’ve come to realize that loyal friends will stand by you. Although we are in an environment where there is so much focus placed on me, not that I don’t like money but money never takes preeminence over a good relationship, over adding values to people’s lives, over leaving an impact and over staying true to my values. I had to walk away from situations in life because they don’t align with my values, but I know that in everything I’ve been through, I always see them as lessons for the next experiences I come across. I have no regrets, none whatsoever. Not even the fact that I’ve had to build a challenging career as a woman in the corporate world and I’ve been able to surmount all the challenges that I’ve been faced with. The most interesting part is that I’ve had situations that I’ve interacted with people and whenever they come into my office, they ask to see “my madam” because in this part of the world, they expect that for someone of my status and achievement, they expect to see a very big woman. I’m a very humble person, very down to earth, everything about me is just by the grace of God. There’s nothing that makes me different from the next person so what should I be proud about.
Let’s get to meet DrPriscaNdu career-wise. From the beginning to where you are right now, can you mirror it very briefly?
I started my career in Aviation, where I rose to Public Relations Manager in an American company called AEG International Overhaul it was the company that won the hanger project in the late 1990s for those who would still remember. The contract was actually awarded for the first hangar to be built in Nigeria, up till today, we don’t have a hangar in Nigeria. It was meant to serve the West African sub-Saharan market. We had the Buoying and a lot of major airlines who were interested in working with us because what that would have done for the aviation industry is that we wouldn’t have had to be sending our planes abroad, depleting our little insufficient foreign exchange to service aircraft when for a country that has a minimum of ten functional airlines, we should have our own maintenance hangar. It doesn’t make sense that we are the giant of Africa and yet we are still sending our airlines out for basic checks like the C checks and the D checks. Unfortunately, the project didn’t see the light of the day because when our partners from America flew into the country, they were shot at the airport and you know that’s a horrible experience for anyone to go through. So it was the MD and Chairman of the group, this was the former managing director of Panam Airline (a very big airline in the 1980s). They were shot by armed robbers and were in the hospital for three months and after he survived, he pulled out of the project and refused to have anything to do with Nigeria again. I left the Aviation sector to join Liberty bank in 2003 and from there, I left for Zenith Bank in 2004. I left Zenith in 2006 to join UBA and from UBA, I left for Bank PHB now Keystone Bank and from there, I decided to explore the Oil and gas sector. I was a director in one of the topmost oil servicing firms for two years before I got appointed in Asset Management Company of Nigeria (AMCON) as the Executive Director in charge of the Services industry. I left the private sector entirely to join the public sector. I was in the public sector till 2019 before I decided to go back to the private sector to try my hands on infrastructure because I found out that I needed to give back to the country that has afforded me with all these opportunities to set the pace for my career.
Right now, what does Dr Prisca Ndu do?
Right now, I’m trying my hands on more altruistic objectives. I am the Executive Chairman of Strategium Education Services, it’s an education and technology company. I’m sure some of you must have heard of GidiMobile. DidiMobile is the parent company of Strategium Education Services. What we do is that we provide simplified and gamified learnings. We take, for instance, the SSCE curriculum and break it into games because we know that children like to play games and they don’t like to study. So we make studying easy for them by creating them as games. Every child from age 10 has a mobile phone; so all they need do is download the app. The same time they spend playing those games, they are learning. So you can learn physics and still have fun. You can learn chemistry, mathematics and other subjects and still have fun. And the interesting is that all top scorers from all regions would have the opportunity to study at any of the Ivy Lee schools if they are able to come up at the end of the challenge. Something similar to the game of thrones where you go from one level to another. So in African for instance, as you conquer the challenge in Africa, whoever emerges as the winner has the opportunity of studying in Stamford, Harvard, I mean any of the top Ivy Lee Schools in the world because we are partnering with them. There are two African companies that are currently being funded by Google, my company and a South African company.
How can an average Nigerian take advantage of this blossoming opportunity that you’re offering?
We’ve worked with the Edo State government on this and wave worked partially with the Lagos State government on this and we’re still trying to approach some other circles for free because, for us, our goals are not just making money, we also want to improve the level of education in the country and also the quality. In the last 10 to 20 years, our education standards have dropped drastically and our degrees are not even respected abroad.
You mentioned that you were a medical student at UI. Did you have the opportunity to practice along that line?
My father was a medical doctor and his dream was also to see me graduate as a medical doctor so as to take over from him. Unfortunately, after my Part 1 MBBS, I decided to pursue another career path. So even though I graduated from the faculty of medicine, I didn’t complete my medical studies. I graduated from the Department of Biochemistry. So I went on to do my MBA and then ended up in the financial sector which is completely different from what my father had planned for me.
There are so many young ladies out there who want to be like you. What would you like to tell them…?
Well, my advice for them is personal development. Take your studies seriously, take your work seriously, believe in yourself, set clear achievable goals. Don’t set goals that will become demotivating for you. Set short, medium and long term goals so that as you achieve the short ones, it inspires you to achieve the long term ones and as you do, it gives you a clear perspective of how far away you are from the long term goals. For instance, if a set a goal to become a director in the next 10 years, I ask myself what I need to achieve that. I first look at my educational qualifications. Do I have the prerequisite qualifications to achieve that goal, if I don’t, then what do I need to do to have the qualifications? For instance, if I don’t have an MBA, I can go and enroll for one and there are a lot of online MBAs right now so you don’t even need to wait for a conventional school to get one and in about a year, you would have that in the bag already. That will position you for better opportunities. Believe in yourself, work hard, never believe that there’s a ceiling that you cannot rise above, your targets are as low and as high as you set them for yourself. I was fortunate to be mentored by very strong personalities that encouraged me to go for very high goals and they told me to never sell myself short because the same energy you will use to pursue small goals is the same energy you will use to pursue big ones. And then, I’m a very confident person, I am extremely independent, I believe in being self-sufficient, I don’t have to have so much to know that I have everything that I need. I can say that as I sit here, I have everything that I need and there’s nothing that can make me do what I would not be confident about and that’s what contentment is all about. It’s not about your bank alerts and as you can see, I have a wealth of reliable friends that I’ve built over the years both in my work relationship, personal or religious relationship.
Finally, you look so stunning despite your busy schedule. What informs your outlook?
It’s effortless for me, it’s just my second nature. If I see what’s good for me, I’ll buy it irrespective of what the brand is. That’s my fashion statement. I’m not going to tell you that I only wear designers, if I see an Omowunmi style and I like it, I’ll buy her brand. I’m very Nigerian I love being Nigerian and whenever I travel, I appear in Ankara fabrics and when the whites see me, they love it too. Every time they see me they ask me who I am wearing. One of my favourite designers is Tish O Couture, I wear a lot of her style when I travel.