‘How I Convinced a Father To Allow Her Daughter Study Engineering’ – Folorunsho Alakija

Africa's foremost Billionnaire, Folorunsho Alakija

“The world’s 600 million adolescent girls have shown that if given the skills and equal opportunities, they can be Changemakers”

Nigerian billionaire, businesswoman and philanthropist, Folorunsho Alakija has explained how she helped a young Nigerian girl she met while shopping in one of her trips abroad convinced her father to allow her study engineering in school.

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Alakija, Group Managing Director, The Rose of Sharon Group, said that the young Nigerian girl was serving at the till, and was so excited to see her.

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“In her excitement, she quickly blurted out her personal story. She wanted to be an engineer, but her father discouraged her because she was a girl”

After much persuasion, which included sharing a copy of her autobiography with the girl’s father to convince him that a woman can successfully play and win in the Oil and Gas sector, Alakija said that her father agreed and the young girl has become a successful engineer today.

Commenting on the International Day of the Girl Child day, Alakija said that discrimination and gender imbalance usually begin in the home.

“The world’s 600 million adolescent girls have shown that if given the skills and equal opportunities, they can be Changemakers”

She advised parents and society at large not to undermine the abilities of the girl child, but invests in their future and believe in their leadership, and potential.

Alakija is a fashion icon with an infallible sense of style, friend indeed, a loving wife, a mother and doting grandmother. 

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Educated in Europe and first embarked on a career in office administration, then she went into banking where she remained, until she took a leap of faith and followed her heart to establish her own business in the Nigerian fashion industry

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Her fashion house “Supreme Stitches” rose to prominence almost immediately, and rebranded as “Rose of Sharon House of Fashion”, which later became a household name.

She’s also the 2nd richest woman in Africa, worth over $1 billion and has held the title of the richest woman in Nigeria for years.


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