Last Monday, November 14, 2022, the university admitted over 4,000 graduands into first-degree programmes. The faculty of Law recorded 18 first-class holders, about 11 percent, out of the 158 graduating students. Further, Ogbewe Godswill emerged as the overall best graduating student of 2021/2022 at the end of the five-year degree programme delayed by several industrial strike actions and internal wrangling and shutdown of the university.
In a chat with the Law Press Correspondent, Taiwo Oyinkansola, Godswill shared about the rewarding feeling of graduating atop the class and how he managed to maintain a balance with his academics and extracurricular activities like serving as the President of the Alternative Dispute Resolution Society, University of Ibadan, and a Judge at the Law Students’ Society Judicial Council.
Law Press: How does it feel to be the BGS of your set?
Godswill: It feels rewarding. It’s nice to put in the work for years and eventually get results for it. But at the same time, it’s a little scary. Because you know people now have expectations of you, and you wonder whether you can live up to them. But all the same, I’m most appreciative to friends, family, and God Almighty for the feat.
put my best into a course and get returns. Secondly, had many friends that shared similar academic goals. So it was easy to come together and make things work when exams came.
Law Press: What was your reading schedule like?
I get this question a lot, but it wasn’t anything too crazy. And that’s not being humble. I would take good class notes and use them as guides to make my exam notes. That way, I had something concrete to rely on during exams. I didn’t have any strict reading schedule. But when it was time to get serious, I could dig in for hours, maybe days too. That flexible system worked wonders for me. I would encourage people to take some time to understand what applies to them.
Law Press: Was there ever a time your CGPA dropped? If so, how were you able to get back up?
Godswill: Yes, and that’s bound to happen. But it’s easier if you start on a strong footing. My CGPA took a beating in my third year. Luckily, I had done a lot to cushion it in the first two years of study. If you’re trying to get back up, focus on the heavy unit courses. And give it your all. You also have your final year-long essay, which can make all the difference.
Law Press: Your success makes you an inspiring example for others. What advice would you give people who also want to finish with a good grade?
Godswill: Start well! University is a marathon, not a sprint. So your grades at the end of your first year will create momentum. But if you’re past that stage, focus on the things within your control and make the most of them. It’s also important to build good relationships with coursemates and seniors. You have nothing to lose. But beyond grades, I’d encourage people to have a full University experience. Go out with friends and have fun. Take on roles and meet people. You’ll never know those that would be key to your success.
Law Press: Now that you’re done with your first degree, what’s next after law school? What area(s) of law would you venture into?
Godswill: I think it’s too soon to limit myself to any area of law. So I want to do some exploration after law school. But I’ve had lots of experience in dispute resolution, especially as a member and later, President of the ADR Society. Recently, I took an interest in Mergers & Acquisitions. I find that the deal process can be tasking, but it also makes for satisfying work. These are some areas I’ll be pursuing in the near future.