From dishwasher to Vice Chancellor: US University appoints Nigerian as its Vice Chancellor

Dr. Victor Ukpolo

Dr. Victor Ukpolo

THE Board of Supervisors of the Southern University System has announced the appointment of Dr. Victor Ukpolo as the seventh Vice-Chancellor for Southern University, New Orleans, USA. Until his recent appointment, the 53-year-old Ph.D. Ukpolo served the Southern University System as Vice President for academic and student affairs for three years. Other posts include Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs at California State University, Los Angeles; Interim Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs/Special Assistant to the Chancellor for Academic Research for the Tennessee Board of Regents; and various administrative posts at Austin Peay State University.
He started his academic career as an Assistant Professor of Economics at Austin Peay State University, in Tennessee, USA and after serving approximately 10 years and attaining the level of Professorship, he was promoted to serve the central administration of the university as Executive Assistant to the President, which became his first administrative assignment.
Ukpolo, a graduate of the University of Maryland in College Park, Md., received both a Master of Arts and Doctorate of Philosophy degrees from The American University. An economist, he is a member of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities’ Committee on Economic and Workforce Development, the Business Council of New Orleans & the River Region, and a board member of the Algiers (New Orleans) Economic Development Foundation.
“I came to America as a young adult after high school at United Christian Secondary Commercial School at Apapa, blessed with all the tools (both from home and from school) to succeed if given the opportunity. America provided that opportunity for me to fulfill my dream. In order to make ends meet upon my arrival, I picked several odd jobs dish-washer in a Chinese restaurant in Washington DC, a security guard in an office building in downtown Washington DC, and then a taxi driver. While doing all these odd jobs, I never lost focus on my ultimate goal. So, you might say that I moved from a dish-washer to being a Chancellor of a university, which I believe is a testament to having the right kind of values -hardwork, dedication, honesty, discipline and just doing the right thing at all times,” said Ukpolo.

Submitted – M.Adeniyi  Courtesy – Online Nigeria


16 Responses

  1. I was impressed reading the story of Dr. Victor Okpolo. I must say i am happy he has made it to this point and at the age of 53,i am convinced there is more to come.

    I live in Germany and can understand very well what he had to go through, since i had to do the same to obtain my MA degree.

    There can not be any other encouragement to other persons who find themselves in a similar situation, than to read such a success story.

    Thanks for bringing this story to us and i hope many others will have the opportunity of reading his story and drwaing inspiration from it.

    Derrick T.
    Berlin, Germany

    • For a minute, this story appeared impressive, very impressive for one to move as a dishwasher to the next level. It thus inspired me to google more on this fellow of which I spend some of my most valuable time doing just that. What I came to find out is that he really just moved from being a dishwasher to a KITCHEN BOY. As far as I could tell, he is just a simple puppet of Southern University.

  2. ah.this little story has really inspired me.Nigerians need to understand that only hardwork can lead to success.i am indeeed glad that he was consistent in his work and had focus and it all paid off in the end.

  3. most definetly, this is really an inspring one coming from a Nigerian. well done sir, you’ve really done us proud down here. we will definetly uphold you in prayers down here. i hope you get to read this. proud to be associated with you.

  4. I work at the place…..

  5. I was searching for some of my lost relations when i stumbled into this article. Fortunately this Victor ukpolo is my cousin and i saw when i was a kid. Am happy for him and right now am on PhD on medicinal chemistry employing Nano based technology. I hope people also read my story one day. If i can contact him personlly, i will be more than pleased.

  6. from what i have read about your university about the acheviemennt, i am pleasing that you also help us also in Kasu in Nigeria. i hope my request will be put into consideration.

  7. Hi Sir I was the photographer that you spoke to at the ocean view restaurant at Dr Case Lawal’s award I will like to send you some pictures from that night I will like you to have some pictures so you will remember us back here please Sir kindly respond with e-mail address

    Thanks Oshodi-Glover

  8. This is an interesting and encouraging story. The guy simply employed the force of FOCUS. An attitude lacking in our youth today. He went through the PROCESS and got the PRODUCT as a prize. If fail to go through the process, you will miss the product (Bishop David Oyedepo,2001) People want “arrive” overnight- which is dangerous- It is like breaking the speed limit! If you break the speed limit, you will end up in a crash !!!(Bishop David Oyedepo). Guys look up there is more ahead of you than behind you; don’t despair. THERE IS HOPE FOR THE FOCUSSED!!! Can I hear your AMEN!!!!!!!!!!!

  9. Hi Prof.,
    Tenaciously holding on to a well-defined vision even against odds is what is needed to succeed in life. You have proven that an average Nigerian would always do the right thing while some minority few may be busy giving the nation a bad name. Thanks for this great image laundering for Nigeria. Cheers

  10. May God continue to be with him.

    • God gifted Man. May almighty God bless him.

      Diwan Rashidul Hassan
      SAARC Country Research Scholar
      Department of Mass Communication and Journalism
      Assam Central University, Silchar, INDIA
      Director (1983-2011)
      Public Relations and Publications Office
      Bangladesh Agricultural University (BAU)
      Mymensingh-2202, BANGLADESH

  11. You ought to take part in a contest for one of the best sites online.
    I am going to recommend this site!

  12. My name is Brighten Sorgwe, your snr friend during our secondary school days. We lived along same street aswell and you used to visit for studies once in a while. Remember? I want to let you know that am so proud of you for your great feats in life

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