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Student Story - A Bitter-Sweet Loss for AUST

AUST prides itself in being able to attract the best and brightest of Africa's young talent. This bitter-sweet story is further proof of the kind of talent among us but, as happens so often at AUST, the best of them are also constantly being eyed by others.

Vincent Chuks Ntichika, a young Nigerian with a great passion for process engineering, started his studies towards an AUST Master of Science degree in Petroleum Engineering barely two months ago. The AUST student chapter of the Society of Petroleum Engineers now has a well documented record of achievement and public service. Just a week ago, they held elections for a new executive committee and Vincent was elected President. My first meeting with him was at his request, so that he could introduce himself to me and get me to meet his new executive team. However, in that very short space of time, Vincent also received the proverbial "offer you cannot refuse". With a technical diploma in Chemical Engineering (obtained with distinction) from the Kaduna Polytechnic, and a B.Sc. Eng. degree in Chemical Engineering (with a GPA of 4.29/5.00) obtained from Ahmadu Bello University Zaria, he was already a ripe target for offers from elsewhere. Vincent received an offer from a well-known, Nigerian-born global mining and manufacturing giant to join them as a "trainee engineer". The very first order of business was for Vincent to immediately pack his bags to proceed to India to undergo training for one year. The training will be in Process Engineering, about which he speaks in such endearing terms when he says "My passion for processes made me to learn paint production. I have produced quality paints for some clients and got commendable results", showing that he really is a doer who had already started applying his knowledge and skills in an entrepreneurial way, the kind of application of knowledge AUST works to imbue in its students. With a breaking voice, he says "I felt at home at AUST, a school (from which) I have always dreamt of obtaining my MSc, right from my undergraduate days, but the opportunity to practice my process engineering came so suddenly and I just had to take advantage of the great opportunity.....I hope to, someday, be part of the commencement ceremony of AUST, as one of its graduates". Even though you have only been here for such a short time, you are already part of the AUST family; the quality of person you are and your leadership abilities were all already so evident. We shall certainly miss you. We wish you every success, Vincent, as your take your young career to new heights.