Angelo State University is located in San Angelo, Texas.It is a part of the Texas Tech System which consists of three universities, Texas Tech University, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center and Angelo State University where Ulunma Onokala knew she would attend after several family members already went there. “I’m from Nigeria and my cousins, two of my cousins actually graduated from ASU and it was more like a family thing because my older cousin graduated from here, “she says.
parents thought it was a good choice since they did very well in ASU and ASU
was very receptive towards international students and I thought I would have a
better opportunity coming over here to go to school than staying over there in
Nigeria,” she says.
And here it will open my doors for me because the education system is better than the one we have back home so I just thought it would be a smart thing to do to further my education to come over here and go to school.”
Ulunma says deciding her major was more of a journey than deciding where to go. She says her parents were interested in her studying medicine, but it wasn't until taking a course in Business that it clicked. “Well, it was a whole long process when I first came to the United States what my parents had in mind was I was going to do Pre-Med or Pre-Pharmacy, but then I decided to go towards the business route, but I didn’t know what I wanted to do,” she says.
“I was pretty good at Accounting, but I hadn’t taken any Finance classes, so just one semester it was I do accounting or I do management information systems and I really didn’t like any of the two, but it was something I was good at then one semester I just took Finance, and the finance class and I was like ‘Whoop’ that’s it. I found it. I took just one class and I was like yeah, this is what I want to do and I really like it. I like it a lot!
After already being at Angelo State University three years, Ulunma says she remembers trying to transition to the states, and now in her senior year, she says everything has for the most part, fallen into place. “At first, coming to ASU was pretty difficult because I was pretty young and I was the only one here at ASU because my friends were back home in Nigeria so it was pretty difficult for me getting adjusted and all and the accents and stuff it was difficult for people to understand what I was saying.
It was difficult for me to understand what people were saying so there was kind like you know a clash of communication, but after a while things started getting okay,” she says.
“I am a member of the African Student Association and I am a member of Delta Sigma Pi which is a business professional organization and also I tutor Accounting for the school and I’ve made new friends and everything started to fall into place,” she says. “I started getting more comfortable and more relaxed and more at home.”
Initially Ulunma says coming to the United States was all about getting an education, but now she says it definitely has become so much more. “Coming here and getting like a new experience something different from what I am use to it kind of makes you mature because if you just stay in a particular place and grow up and you don’t know what is going on around you, you begin to think that there is only one way to look at things, but when you go somewhere else, when you live somewhere else you experience new things you experience new culture and stuff like that,” she says.
“You become more mature in a sense and then you have a broader perspective on life and you are able to make better choices because you have looked at different variables before you made a choice. So, the opportunity and the fact that your horizon is getting broader and the fact that you are more able to compete with people around the world because you are not just staying in your safe boundaries your going out to see what is out there that is why I realized when I first came to the United States it was just for me to have a better education, but now it has become something more you know,” she says.
“It is more about networking. It is more about learning other people’s way of life. It is more about getting prepared for the global world.”
Graduation for Ulunma is in December. She then plans to go back home to Nigeria but, eventually come back to the United States for graduate school at Harvard University and work on a PhD in Finance or Economics.