• George Sarkodie

Mentee Spotlight - EQUiP 2022 :Mariam Usman.

"Mentor and coach others when you can. Your teaching will deepen your own learning".

Lee J. Colan


Mariam is one of the mentees selected from many applicants across Africa to participate in EQUiP 2022

Background and Academics

My name is Usman Mariam Onize, I was born and bred in Kogi State, Nigeria. I hold a Bachelor of Technology in Biochemistry from Federal University of Technology, Minna (FUTMINNA) Nigeria. After my undergraduate studies, I underwent a one-year mandatory service in Gombe state, Nigeria where I served as Biology/Chemistry teacher in a secondary school. In 2020, I received a fully-funded scholarship from the African Water Resources Mobility Network (AWaRMN) of the Intra-Africa Academic Mobility Scheme funded by the European Union, for a Master’s degree program at the Department of Chemistry, Makerere University, Uganda. I am currently studying Chemistry and my research is focus on water pollution remediation particularly eutrophication. I am in my second year of my masters’ studies. My interests are in environmental sciences and I wish to pursue my career in environmental toxicology. I hope to one day become a sustainability change maker and advocate of SDG 6 (access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene).



Talent and Mentorship


In 2017, I met some great mentors at National Research Institute for Chemical Technology (NARICT) Zaria, Nigeria, where I served as an intern. The 6-months internship shaped my idea of the real world. My supervisor once called me and said: “Mariam, you are a great person, you have a lot of potential hidden in you, all you need is a good environment to unleash those potential”. I got so much academic advice and trainings from him as well as career advice. I

learnt that victory comes from finding opportunities in every difficulty. I remember being taken through these phrase “if opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door”. I think I got the best mentorship so far from the people I met in the institute. I am hoping to meet more mentors as I move forward in the journey of life.




Leadership and Learning

As a young professional, I am still building my leadership skills and I dream of becoming a good leader. Back in my undergraduate days, I ran away from leadership positions, but I realized that I can’t run forever so I began to lead groups in group assignments and discussions and I did great. During my youth service, it became compulsory that I must lead a group, and I served as the leader of a community development service (CDS) group called DrinkIQ, I did a perfect job. I have also taken some online courses on leadership and teamwork and I am glad that I took the opportunity of applying for the EQUiP 2022 Meet mentors program. I really hope to take advantage of this opportunity, learn through all the processes and become a mentor.



Self Recognition and a Positive Mind

I would also like to acknowledge that I am a highly motivated individual with good interpersonal communication skills, and my stay in Uganda has also given me some intercultural skills. I love writing about life, academics and I wish to become a good writer someday.


EQUiP is a talent and leadership focused training, designed to prepare young Africans to live intentionally and purposefully, while impacting the lives of others. From the entire team at MeetMentors and your colleagues in EQUiP 2022, we wish you all the best.

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