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Working against career advancement barriers By: Linda Chinenyenwa Familusi

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Name: Linda Chinenyenwa Familusi

Nationality: Nigeria

Host Institution: Eduardo Mondlane University

Course: masters in Agricultural Economics

Thesis: Marketing of Maize and Cowpea amongst Smallholder Farmers in Mozambique: A Market Participation Approach

 

To pursue my masters degree in a reputable university has been one of my numerous career objectives. Therefore, securing the INTRA-ACP/RUFORUM scholarship to study a masters in Agricultural Economics in Eduardo Mondlane University was a great opportunity that I sincerely value as this course of action will no doubt contribute hugely to my career goal as a lecturer in the University of Port Harcourt Nigeria.
However, beginning the programme was challenging for me because I had to travel to Maputo with my two daughters, both infants (21 months and 4 months old respectively) at the time the study would commence. Prior to my transit to Maputo, my husband had been away for more than six months undertaking his master’s degree in Germany.
I had doubts and fears (fear of the unknown) about going with my family to a foreign country where I have no relatives or friends, a completely different culture from the Western African countries and the most frightening part then was that ”Portuguese” is the lingua franca in Mozambique as I only understand English and a bit of French. I wondered a lot about a couple of things; what is the weather like in Maputo? Will the kids be alright in the new environment? Who would take care of the kids while I am in class? If I secure a nanny, can she be trusted? Will she be able to understand and speak English? Will I be able to get a comfortable accommodation? Will I be able to acquire a visa on entry for my kids and I? Will someone be at the airport to pick us? Will I be able to study adequately? Would the people be friendly to me and my family? I can go on and on as the list is endless.