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October 5, 2020

From Nigeria to Ghana: Immigration for Education

Elisha Joseph is willing to do whatever it takes — even move countries — to reach his educational goals

Elisha Tubo-Oreriba Joseph grew up in Port Harcourt, Nigeria, as the oldest of five children. He dreamed of becoming a lawyer someday, but he wasn’t sure how to make his dream a reality.

The beginning of Elisha’s PathwayConnect journey

Elisha Joseph

Elisha was called to serve a mission in Enugu, Nigeria, where he first heard about BYU-Pathway Worldwide from one of his companions. He realized he could go to law school if he completed his bachelor’s degree online through BYU-Pathway’s programs. “This insight made me shout for joy,” he said. After returning from his mission, Elisha learned that PathwayConnect would soon be available for the first time in Odorkor, Ghana — the nearest location to his home. He immediately enrolled.

Participating in PathwayConnect required many sacrifices for Elisha. Because virtual gatherings weren’t available at that time, he chose to relocate to pursue his education.* “I had to move from Nigeria to Ghana,” he said. “The exodus was not pleasant, as it unfolded lots of hard times economically.”

Gaining new skills and experience through volunteer work

In addition to his coursework, Elisha also spent eight hours a day volunteering. “When I started PathwayConnect, I knew I needed a job, and getting one was very difficult. With no certificate or skills to get a job, I decided to do volunteer work,” he explained.

Elisha volunteered as an assistant call center supervisor for the Perpetual Education Fund (PEF), training other call center employees and assisting PEF participants across West Africa over the phone. In exchange for his volunteer work, he was allowed to use an office computer to work on his school assignments.

All of Elisha’s sacrifices were made with faith and optimism. “The PathwayConnect program was something I desired … so I was super excited when it was time for me to start, and I clung on to it with all the energy of my being,” he said. “With faith in God, determination, and help from my dear friend [who introduced me to PathwayConnect], I survived my challenges.”

Volunteer by day, student by night

Elisha completed PathwayConnect in 2013 and chose to pursue a bachelor’s degree in applied management online through BYU-Idaho, supported by BYU-Pathway, which came with its own challenges.

Elisha after receiving his bachelor’s degree

“I spent all my online degree days continuing my volunteer work,” he said. “It was not easy combining 10, 12, and sometimes 15 credits with 8 hours of volunteer work per day, but because of my faith in God … I was able to make the sacrifice.”

Finding reliable internet access and electricity were also challenges for Elisha. “It was cheaper buying data at night, so I stayed awake at night to do my assignments and then prepared to go to work in the morning,” he said. “Sometimes in the process of doing my assignments, the power would go off.”

The rewards of hard work and sacrifice

Although Elisha certainly faced adversity, he never gave up. In fact, his faith was strengthened as he overcame his trials and continued working toward his degree. “I had faith that God would help me achieve my educational goals,” he said. “I put in my best, and God took care of the rest.”

“Of course, there were days I felt dispirited with my studies, but with the help of fellow course mates and friends, my spirit was energized to continue and persevere until I graduated, despite the challenges I encountered,” Elisha said.

Elisha graduated with his bachelor’s degree in July 2017 and got his first job in November of the same year. Elisha still dreams of becoming a lawyer eventually, but for right now, his goal is to earn a master’s degree in public administration. He is working on starting his own business using his experience and training to manage businesses across Africa.

When he’s not doing schoolwork, Elisha loves playing the piano, singing, and dancing. He also enjoys spending time with family, friends, and other Church members.

What sacrifices have you made for your education? Share below!

“I had faith that God would help me achieve my educational goals.”

*^ PathwayConnect is now available in several locations across Nigeria and Ghana, as well as virtually.

Comments on "From Nigeria to Ghana: Immigration for Education"

Cynthia says:

Congratulations to you Elisha 👏am so happy for you,I l somuch love your zeal.

Oyeyemi Israel says:

I really your storyline.It showed how you persevered throughout

Ogunleye Johnson says:

This is really encouraging. Thank you for sharing with us.

Edwin Ewudzie says:

I also know Elisha when he started his PathwayConnect program at Odokor. He had done great and was an example to many of us. Kudos to you.

Ahiadzonu Christian says:

God is indeed the only Father we can put our trust in. I am doing programming. It’s not easy working at the same time with your studies. May God lift us all.

Lilybeth Morin Diray Jaminal says:

Elisha, you are an inspiration to everyone. Living in a far away place where education is a rare opportunity, BYU-Pathway Worldwide has indeed fulfilled what it seems a far-reaching goal.
I wish you the very best and hope you will achieve your ultimate goal of becoming a lawyer someday.

Maria Magdalena L.Espinosa says:

I am a domestic helper and work 8 to 10 hours a day. In the morning before work, I read my scriptures and do my Pathway studies. During my work I listen to BYU speeches, General Conference talks and Sunday School lessons. I don’t miss a day doing it. During my travel time picking up kids from school, I read my BYU lessons, just like I’m doing now; I can’t afford to waste time here. After work I do my studies again. Just like Elisha, there are indeed obstacles and challenges along the way, but if we persevere and apply every skill thoughtfully and faithfully soar high, we can all do it just like Elisha. Being in PathwayConnect, I noticed that learning professional skills is a mastery for us and an armor during the battle. I am very happy for him, and I’m sure he is successful temporally and spiritually now.

Shawn says:

I wish we had an update on how he’s doing now….

Adedoyin says:

Wow this is encouraging and touching. It gives the zeal to press on and hold on steadfastly towards accomplishing my goals.

Jessica says:

When I want to strive to do the assignments at the due date, I study over the night. I am doing the third semester and it is very hard with the introductory certificate, the university skills course and institute!

LYDIA says:

Brother Elisha,
you are an inspiration to all who are having difficult times. Currently we in our country are facing a severe crisis and the long power cuts are affecting me badly. The thought of quitting was often coming into my mind but after reading your story I realised that’s not only me.
I hope that your story will strengthen many who get the chance to read it.

Barbara A. Castro says:

What a wonderful sacrifice Elisha has made to reach his dream in life. He is one of the role models of today’s youth. Congratulations, I hope he achieves his dream of becoming a lawyer when the day comes.

Juan Carlos PBYM says:

I relate to your story Elias; it is motivating to see how your sacrifices have paid off. It is also admirable how you have become an example for people to follow you, not only with those around you but also with people in different parts of the world, like me.

Carmen Ofelia Lock Almeyda says:

Congrats Elisha! Great work, you’re a successful man. Effort pays off. Thank you for sharing your story. You inspire me.

tessa says:

Congratulations, Elisha, you have really inspired me. Indeed hard work pays, and if we work hard and put our trust in the Lord, He shall not fail us.

What a wonderful story of inspiration. Thank you for reminding us to never give up on our goals and that obstacles can be used to strengthen our journey. May you have much success in your future, good brother.

alex julio vasquez rojas says:

Inspiring article about the Elisha’s Life respect his education, I know that on our way to get a degree, there will be a lot challenges and that is ok. It is a part of life. Never lose faith in God and be obedient to his guidance and revelations through of our prophets and even leaders at BYU-Pathway Worldwide.

Maara Tuamingi says:

Thank you Elisha I am inspired by your story. You are very strong in your faith and dedication; therefore, you reap the blessings. Your story is helping me to never be negative but to keep persevering in my studies.

Edna Pineda says:

Congratulations Elisha! It is wonderful to know and remember that the same God who helped you is here to help us to achieve our goals and to overcome any obstacles!

Krystal says:

Elisha – what an amazing story of great sacrifice! Only sacrifice I need to make is ‘setting aside time”, as I read your story it reminds me to keep on and be grateful for the opportunity I have in learning where so many aren’t able to.
May you be blessed because of your efforts.

Roxana Amanda Vizcarra says:

I was completely motivated reading your experience. With faith everything is possible!

Andrew Buleya says:

I am moved by these true stories. I want more to life.


Congratulations on your achievements, Elisha! I do really know Bro. Elisha and his family very well. He was my stake pianist, and he did work very hard to achieve his goal.


Congratulations, Brother Elisha. You are an amazing, inspiring person to all PathwayConnect students. I agree that we should do our best and God cares for the rest. Best wishes, even as you look upon greater heights.

uche ikedi says:

Bro Elisha’s journey is so inspiring, and I have really been motivated since I read about it.

Owen Simbarashe Jakopo says:

I am truly inspired! Our Heavenly Father loves effort, and it will be rewarded with great blessings.

Jewel Kanta says:

I was so inspired when I read about your educational journey. I am a student, a mother, and working full time. Indeed, I can attest that it’s very difficult, but with the help of others and God, we can make things possible. I too want to graduate and get my first degree through BYU-Pathway and start my own business.

Ama Serwa Dsane-Laryea. says:

I know Bother Elisha from Ghana (we were in the same ward). Thank you for your testimony. Hard work pays off, and when we do our part, the Lord helps us to succeed. I know the Lord will help you to achieve your goals.

Cecilia D says:

Congratulations on your achievements, Elisha! Your experience encourages me to keep doing my best in BYU-Pathway.

Christopher Ibu says:

I happened to once work under Bro. Elisha. I attest to the fact that he is super dedicated to any course he embarks on.

Congratulations brother Elisha. These testimonies help us to keep up our pursuit of this education. I am encouraged by your story. May God help you to reach more heights in the name of Jesus Christ

Mouzoun Blaise says:

Thanks for the encouraging words. I am also doing my degree online, and it’s not been easy. Your story has given me hope to persevere and continue.

isata pessima says:

I first met Brother Elisha when he was serving as an assistant to our mission president in the Nigeria Enugu mission. He is a great man who is always working very hard to set a precedent for others to follow. Congratulations sir.

Precious Murisa says:

That’s very encouraging, and Elisha and I know if we put God first in all that we do, we will achieve all our goals.

Stephen Peregba says:

I happen to know Elisha — starting life from where he started and coming from a nice family in the same ward/living area. An uplifting one for me. I can attest to his effort. A mentor I aspire to be like.

Modeste KABEYA KALONGA says:

This is a great example for our lives…Thank you brother Elisha.

Charlotte says:

That is great! I am also enrolling and it’s not easy for me, but with faith in our Savior i can.

Anthony Matende says:

Brother Elisha’s experience is inspiring and is real support to many experiencing challenges and anticipating challenges as we go through the PathwayConnect program.

Maxwell says:

Wow it’s good that you still had faith even though things were not okay. I have learned something from the story : )

Winnet Ngirazi says:

Thank you brother Elisha, your story is going to give me faith, hope and courage in my BYU Pathway studies. Here in Africa we face lots of challenges.

Emmanuel Essien says:

Brother Elisha was my friend while in the same mission. He is a courageous young man with full determination to succeed. Indeed PathwayConnect is a hope for a common man, am a student of this institution I had my experience also.

Salu Hunkin-Finau says:

I love reading real stories of people’s lives. The messages resonate life’s trials and hopes in all people.

Umana Effiong says:

I really appreciate this write up as so many of us are at the cross road in determining if we should proceed because of the challenges we face in our course but this message have given us hope for tomorrow and reasons to stay strong and have faith in God.

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