When I first arrived in the United States, at 17, I had no job, no driver's license, and had to commute to HISET classes with my father. For months, this was my life. I had no concrete plans for what I was going to do in the future. Although I had imagined being someone great; fear and reality hit me like a brick wall.

My name is Unenakam Ebiefung. I moved to the United States in January of 2018 to join my new family.

Moving to the U.S has taught me so much; from adapting to the American culture and educational system to learning how to establish a new identity. Over the past couple of years, I have not only learned to be a better person but someone I am so proud of. My passion is to work in computer system security and to help people protect their identity on the internet. I developed this passion as a result of loving to assist people in any situation. When I first arrived, as curious as I was, I wanted to know everything so I would constantly google information, post signs, vocabularies as well as names of things I was not familiar with. Looking back, I often question myself the reality of going online, the risks involved. Often times I wonder what if I had click on links that would have led me into trouble, what if I had click on a website that was prone to viruses or that would have led me to an inappropriate site. Prior to migrating here, I had little knowledge to how to safely engage in online activities or how to protect my identity on the web. So, with these questions in mind, I think about the number of people both young and old out there who, are just the way I was, who are as curious and vulnerable as I was. And I feel like something needs to be done to help protect their identity on the internet, to help secure their information from scammers and people who are always ready to do harm to others online. This is my inspiration for choosing this career path (Computer Information Systems). 

Fast forward to three years after moving to the United States, I graduated with a High school equivalency diploma, I have a driver's license, I am currently working, I will be graduation from a community college and furthering my education for a bachelor's degree at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and most of all, I have an established identity. These might sound less fascinating, but these inspired me to go beyond my abilities, to strive and work harder, to dream big and never be discouraged. I never gave up because I felt like my life were tied into achieving these goals of mine.

So, in essence, I am attending college because I want to establish and lay a solid foundation for my future. I am attending college because I desire to continue the legacy that my family holds dear to heart which is getting the maximum education as possible. I am attending college because I want to give my future generation the ability to dream, to thrive, succeed, and know that with education, anything is possible. I am attending college because I have the opportunity-America has provided me with the educational opportunities I need to be successful in life. And I am attending college because I know this is the only route that will potentially make all my dreams come true. My dad used to say that “Education is the key to success and the best revenge in life is to be massively successful.” I have hopes, dreams and aspiration that I aspire to accomplish and I am certain that education will ultimately have a profound impact on my way to success. This is why I am attending college.