BECOMING A NURSE WAS A DIVINE CALLING BECAUSE IT FALLS IN LINE WITH MY CORE VALUE, WHICH IS HELPING PEOPLE AT THEIR MOST VULNERABLE POINT IN LIFE.
Martin Chukwudi Ozioko hails from Enugu State Nigeria, he graduated from the university of Nigeria Enugu Campus in 2015, where he obtained his B.Sc. in Nursing and was deployed to Bauchi state in 2016 for his one year NYSC program, during the period when the Boko Haram insurgency was rampaging in the North, he was brave to remain in the North to serve his nation, even when his fellow Corps members were redeploying to the east and the west for fear of their lives. After his one-year service to the nation, Martin remained in the north to take up a humanitarian job with a non-governmental organization in Borno state which was the boiling point of the Boko Haram activities. Martin asserted that serving in the North was a period in his life that he would forever cherish because doing humanitarian services in the north ushered in the opportunity to leave Nigeria to pursue his dream of practicing as a Nurse in England.
Martin Currently lives in England and works with NHS England as a staff nurse at the surgery and cancer unit in Leighton hospital Crewe.
Growing up Martin never envisage that he would become a nurse someday, his dream was to become an Engineer like his Uncle who was a Mechanical engineer. Sadly, he lost his Uncle in 2006 and because of his great influence in his life, he wanted to replace him as the next Engineer in the family, but he was unable to pursue his goal because he was not good at math which he believed was a prerequisite for becoming an engineer. He decided to study Nursing as advised by his Aunties, who must have noticed his passion and undeniable love for helping people at their most vulnerable state.
While Studying nursing at the University of Nigeria, Martin already knew he wanted to practice abroad because the country did not in any way provide room for interdisciplinary collaboration on patient care as done abroad. According to him “working in Nigeria would not drive me to do well in the field”.
Immediately after bravely serving Nigeria in Bauchi at the heat of the insurgency and knowing that finance was a big tool to him attaining his dream of practicing abroad, he once again took the bull by the horns forsaking low paying jobs in his home state Enugu or other Eastern states and headed to Borno state where he knew quit few people and at the heart of the insurgency, to work with various Non-governmental agencies.
It was at this time of working in Borno that he started the process for actualizing his dream of practicing abroad. This involved him writing the computer-based examination that will earn him a license and the IELTS which he almost gave up on after his best got him failing the exam four times. Thankfully he did not give up as he looked at failing as an opportunity to learn more and the exams as one he needed to pass for both himself and for his family who had toiled to see him through the university to become a Nurse.
His decision to leave the country although, majorly centered on the desire to attain professional satisfaction in the nursing profession, cannot also be said to exist in isolation of other factors like financial pressure, bad governance and poor regard of nurses in the country.
Arriving England sure made him happy but he still had to face other challenges like the weather, food, manner of communication, difference in jokes, fun, banters, dressing and sadly loneliness as being away from family or friends which sometimes set in depressive states.
Martin had lots more to say in his interview inclusive of the fact that he still believes Nigeria will be great again considering the level of human resources and bright minds she has and hopes for good governance someday.
He hopes to see a Nigeria, where professionals in the health sector would practice interdisciplinary collaboration in patient care, stop professional consciousness of overshadowing patient care and making their professions come first, forgetting that without patients the professions wouldn’t exist.
His advice to nurses out there who aspires to pursue their dreams elsewhere, is to be dedicated, hardworking, to ensure to obtain the prerequisite skills and to be humble and diligent. Also, for young people out there who intend to migrate to other country, he urges them to plan their moves, stay focused and be to be determined.
To Nigeria he says quit magnifying your geographical differences and to those in diaspora he advices to go back home to establish the good things seen abroad.