Thomas says “I did it”

Hi I am Thomas.

I made my first money by running a raffle-on-a-board when I was 12. Attractive prizes such as binoculars and a camera were stapled on to the top half of a large piece of thick cardboard to entice bettors. Tiny folded tickets were glued to the lower half of the board. My brothers hawked the mobile raffle around our village and neighboring ones. This venture yielded a profit equal to 600 lunches when I was 12.

Initially I had no interest in school. Nobody in our village had finished high school, none had ever attended university. Due to lack of interest I was once last in class and always in the bottom. This was during the first 5 years of school.

One day I realized that the students who go attention were the sons, brothers or nephews of other teachers. The only way I could get attention was to be at the top of the class, so started to work seriously. In the last year of high school, I was first in class. At university, I won the Book Prize in my field of study and graduated first in the class, obtaining a medal from the Vice-Chancellor at a ceremony witnessed by members of the press.

After graduating in architectural studies, I continued immediately into urban planning. Later I studied management and finance at Oxford, where I took 4 terms instead of the requisite 6. In the management exams, I came first in my cohort.
A government scholarship financed my undergraduate study while the income as a tutor in land surveying financed the master’s degree. My own funds plus a Commonwealth scholarship and research grants from an investment bank financed the management studies.

My first job paid twice the starting government pay — the one-year investment to get a master’s degree yielded a 50% advantage over those who only had a bachelor’s degree.

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