The moment you discover “what you do not know”: Meet Aderinsola Airat Adio-Adepoju

Mrs Aderinsola Airat Adio-Adepoju (@audioderyne), University of  Lagos, Akoka, is taking part in Soapbox Science Lagos on 22nd August 2019 with the talk: “STEM Skills: The gateway to entrepreneurial science careers” 




The moment you discover “what you do not know”

by Aderinsola Airat Adio-Adepoju

Ph.D. is one of those degrees you pursue because of so many reasons. One of them could be to get a job in academia, another could be to be called Dr. It could be to make a parent proud, a partner proud or something you need for promotion. Sometimes, you just purse it for bragging right!! Yes, you heard me right! Of all these reasons, we cannot say one is the most important. It is however shocking that if half of the current Ph.D. students are to answer truthfully to that question, they will tell you they have not quite clear about why they even started it. My reason I’ll say was a combination of 3 of the above reasons. There have been days on this journey I do not even know if I am worthy of being here. Those moments have occurred a lot of times. I call those moments “The moment you discover what you do not know”

As a student who had a distinction in her Masters in Environmental Chemistry from a top
University in Nigeria; I was expected to be highly knowledgeable and brilliant. So, me gunning for a Ph.D. wasn’t far-fetched. Family and society also think you know a lot and think you are probably Einstein. However, on this journey, I have discovered that I do not know A LOT. And the feeling you get is that dumb feeling because you think you are a fraud. I can bet one Ph.D. student is reading this and saying things like “Oh my God, I am not the only one”. So how often do you get this feeling or moments of “I know nothing”?

In my next blog post titled “what you are not taught” I’ll talk about the moment I realized what I wasn’t taught and how this changed my perception of the quality of education, I got in Nigeria.

RSC congress on Sustainable agriculture; International Conference Center (IIC) Accra, Ghana, November 2017.

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