Have You Met Rutgers-Newark?

Onyedikachi Aligbe

In 2012, Onyedikachi Aligbe came to the United States from Nigeria to pursue her dreams of attending Rutgers University–Newark like her older sisters who were drawn to RU–N for its extensive research opportunities.

In 2016, the College of Arts and Sciences and Honors College senior now dreams of one day returning to Nigeria to share her knowledge of medicine and science for the improvement of Nigeria’s health care systems. Aligbe says that many health facilities in Nigeria lack the foundations in biological research that have allowed for medical advancements in countries like the United States, where patients have access to potentially life-saving treatments.

Aligbe’s goal after graduation is to continue her biological research and earn her M.D. in gynecology in the United States.

“I see it as a responsibility to take that [knowledge] back to Nigeria and do something productive with it,” Aligbe, of East Orange, New Jersey, said.

During her time at RU–N, Aligbe has successfully maintained a 4.0 GPA, despite the demands of a 10-hour weekly commute, a position at the Office of Academic Services, her lab work conducting research on cancer, and her pre-med studies shadowing a pediatrician.

Aligbe says that she will begin applying to medical schools in May, and will spend the next year continuing her research and job shadowing at Foundation Pediatrics.

With a promising future, Aligbe wants to encourage incoming students to follow their passion and ignore stereotypes and naysayers.

“If you know what you want, don’t ever let what anyone else is saying distract you.”