When it comes to taking the leap to explore global employment and living, it can sometimes mean high risk and high reward. For many, it can be founded on a desire for a new experience—connecting with unknown roots to fulfill professional and personal ambitions. For others it can mean a return home, where family members reside and thrive, after taking time in the diaspora to build and grow, both educationally and financially.
One such professional, a U.S.-trained engineer whose heritage is Nigerian, shared his experiences—the good and the bad— in making the transition with Bella Naija, one of Africa’s leading lifestyle Web portals. Check out a few insights on what led him to return to Africa and his day-to-day experiences there:
What inspired this yearning to move back to Nigeria?
Growing up I didn’t travel much, everything I knew about the U.S for instance was from the experience of others. Nigeria was the country I knew for the most part, my friends were here and my family was here. I was excited to leave when I did, but I also came back every Christmas. Nigeria is home!
What does your work entail on a daily basis?
My typical day starts at 7 am when I get to work. My major tasks involve drill and well work coordination. This basically means that before a new well is going to be drilled, all the engineers/functions come together to ensure the wells can flow. This includes a lot of phone calls, face time, etc. I get to interface with the General Managers and Executive Director every week, submit proposals and give presentations; exposure that is more valuable in the long run than most technical work. Anyone looking to work in the same role can make anything in the region of $8- $10,000 a month at entry level.
How long do you see yourself in this role?
A few developments in the global oil & gas markets and within my company make me a little apprehensive about the future. The environment in Nigeria is not particularly stable at the moment, operations are being moved further and further offshore, and many of the large oil companies are divesting. Investors will always look for areas where they can get the most returns for their money and the discovery of much more profitable reserves in North America means that with time, these oil companies will have to reallocate their resources (which are finite) in a manner that can maximize shareholder value. With this knowledge and the opportunities that are available, I am working on several aspects that have not been fully explored. I am monitoring the trends and watching for the best time to move on but I don’t see myself in my current role for more than another year.