Samuel Agogbua Memorial Secondary School Ogidi (SAMSSO)
SAMSSO was a project undertaken by Dr. Cordelia Uddoh in 2016 when she returned to Nigeria to bury her late father, Chief Samuel Agogbua. At the end of the funeral service at St. Paul’s Anglican Church, Ogidi, the pastor Rev. Canon Sunday Okafor appealed to our family for help in building a school. We were asked to either assist in paying for 18 plots of land already secured for the school or build the school. On behalf of the family, Dr. Mrs. Cordelia Uddoh undertook the responsibility of building the school. Within one year, the school was completely built and children are getting world-class education in the comfort of those buildings.
To ensure that students of SAMSSO get a world-class education, we contacted organizations and individuals to donate educational books for the library. These include books in the areas of math, biology, science, physical science, history, literature, business, entrepreneurship, art, culture, health, psychology, and social science. Over 111 boxes of books have been cataloged for a system of accountability. The books will educate, enhance, and elevate the interests of the students in different fields of endeavor. The ultimate goal is to create a positive learning experience for the students and prepare them for stable future careers. A container of books was shipped in September 2019. Dr. Uddoh plans to travel to Nigeria to ensure that a library with good accountability is established that will benefit SAMSSO and surrounding schools.
The success of SAMSSO and the changes it brings to the lives of the students and the community motivated Dr. Uddoh to consider another project: The Vocational School and Training Center (VSATC) and a school for the blind/deaf. The mission and vision for the realization of this bigger project are outlined below:
The Vocational School and Training Center (VSATC)
Our Mission is to equip young Nigerians with skills in farming, fashion design, crafts, sewing, IT, construction, and artisan works to become productive in their community. Our goal is to train graduates to become small business owners and to give back to their community and future generations. We anticipate the VSATC to educate the students in multiple disciplines to prepare them in their careers, as well as match them with mentors/philanthropists who would advise them on the right career path. We are proud of the many patrons, individuals, and partnerships that have expressed support toward realizing the dream of SAMSSO and VSATC. We truly believe that in educating and training individuals, we educate families, communities, generations and change the cycle of poverty that has besieged families for ages. Hopefully, the project will be completed by 2022.
Dr. Uddoh set up a scholarship scheme to help pay for tuition and books for some underprivileged students in Nigeria. This has gone a long way to help these students actualize their dreams of going to school without worrying about cost. The testimony of a recent graduate of Masters in Education (M.Ed.) from Ojukwu University, Anambra State Nigeria captures the spirit of Dr. Uddoh’s scholarship program: “This training has widened my knowledge in the area of education, especially in junior primary/secondary and senior secondary. With this knowledge, I can also lecture in the College of Education if there is a job opportunity.”
The overall goal of the scholarship scheme is to train the personnel who will staff the center. We intend to train nurses, technicians, auxiliary nurses, and administrators to run the place. We are exploring the possibility of training physicians in Nigeria through medical school and residency (Housemanship) with the hope that they will come and serve at the center for some time.