July 12, 2021
BYU‑Pathway Worldwide loves to hear student stories! Recently we had the chance to talk to Yawo Dodzi Allah, a student in Togo, West Africa. He is currently pursuing a social media marketing certificate while working full-time and caring for his wife and two daughters. Yawo is unique because he already has two master’s degrees — one from a university in his home country and one from time he spent studying in China. Despite these accomplishments, he still enrolled in BYU‑Pathway! Learn how BYU‑Pathway taught him things he’d never learned before by reading our conversation with him below.
How did you find and enroll in BYU‑Pathway?
I have a friend — a coworker — who was a bishop for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He talks about the Church a lot. One day he told me the Church offers a way to get a degree online (BYU‑Pathway), even from Togo. I wasn’t interested at first because I was extremely busy at work and am not a member of the Church. At the enrollment deadline, my friend came to my office and said, “Please, this is a great opportunity. It will change your life.” I agreed to enroll, wanting to see if I could succeed.
How is BYU‑Pathway different from your previous educational experiences?
The things I’m learning in BYU‑Pathway I’ve never learned before. BYU‑Pathway is giving me the bright future that I always dreamed of. Even though I have two master’s degrees, what I learned at BYU‑Pathway is quite different. By completing PathwayConnect, I learned how to manage my own life, manage my house, and serve in my community. This is incredible! I’ve changed socially. I learned how to build a team and work like a team leader, so it was truthfully lovely.
Why did you decide to enroll in BYU‑Pathway if you already have so much education?
Even though I got those two master’s degrees, I knew if I had the opportunity I would go to school again. Learn something new, continue your education until you’re dead! The whole world will know your story one day. I’m implementing my vision with BYU‑Pathway. I’m talking about BYU‑Pathway and the Church to some of my friends — about how they’re doing good things to make a path for people who can’t afford education. When people don’t have faith in their future, BYU‑Pathway is there to help them.
How would you say BYU‑Pathway is different from the other universities you’ve attended?
We are growing spiritually in BYU‑Pathway, and we are growing in the scriptures. Also, in my area, education is based too much on theoretical approaches. But BYU‑Pathway is so practical. There are many things I didn’t know even though I have two master’s degrees. But with BYU‑Pathway I’m doing it! All the lessons and the learning model — I love it!
What challenges have you faced with education?
One of my problems is I’m working Monday through Saturday — more than 40 hours. Sometimes I’m so tired when I come home from work. I take a break of maybe one hour, work on my assignments until 4:00 a.m. sometimes, sleep for two hours, and then go back to work again. It’s not easy, but I ask Heavenly Father to support me. Hard work makes things happen if you believe and have faith. I strongly believe in Jesus Christ. I do believe that God exists and that He knows us. He gives us opportunities to rise up if we have faith.
Have you learned any new skills?
Yes, time management. Also the most important thing I learned from BYU‑Pathway is that you need to put money aside, because God has said to pay tithes. I never knew that before. If you give to God, He will multiply what you give to him. When I paid my tithes, I saw new changes in my life. During the COVID-19 pandemic, for example, I lost my job. When I resumed paying tithing, I found another job within a week.
Do you have any advice for other students?
I want to tell the whole world that they should believe in God. You will find a way out! The opportunities I have are available to anyone else. If you knock on the door, it will be opened to you. This is my belief. Everyone should go to BYU‑Pathway Worldwide!
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