Chuks Onochie Nwabugwu

Chuks Onochie NwabugwuMature international student Chuks Onochie Nwabugwu celebrated the culmination of three years’ study today (Wednesday, July 16) when he received his BSc Criminology and Criminal Justice from Swansea University, achieving an Upper Second Class (2:1) degree.

Chuks, in his 30s, who is from Abuja, the capital city of Nigeria, undertook the three year, full time programme through the Centre for Criminal Justice and Criminology in the University’s College of Law.

He received his degree at a Congregation for the University’s College of Law, held in the City and County of Swansea’s Brangwyn Hall. While Chuks’ proud parents, Sirand Lady J.C Nwabugwu, were unable to attend the Congregation, his cousins and friends Nya Adams, Mercy Titus, Chinemerem John Eze and Olaniran Damilola, who are UK-based, attended to help him celebrate his well-deserved success.

Prior to coming to study at Swansea University, and after completing his schooling, Chuks had worked as a Detective Inspector with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in Nigeria, which has as its Mission, “…to rid Nigeria of economic and financial crimes and to effectively coordinate the domestic effort of the global fight against money laundering and terrorist financing.”

The experience he gained in this role with the EFCC and his thirst to further his knowledge academically in this field led him to a degree programme at Swansea.

Dr Stephen Case, Course Director of the BSc Criminology and Criminal Justice and Chuk’s academic tutor said: “When Chuks entered my office for his first tutorial in his first week at Swansea, he was a mature, international student returning to study after a long period working as a fraud investigator in Nigeria.  Incredibly, he also admitted that he had never written an academic essay.

“But from those humble beginnings, Chuks adapted to his new study and domestic environment through persistence, enthusiasm and a stubborn refusal to fail.

“He has worked tirelessly with his tutor, module leaders, fellow students and University support services, such as the Royal Literary Fund and the Learning and Information Systems (LIS) Subject Librarian, to immerse himself in Criminology and to improve his academic study skills and assignment performance.  

“In his second year, Chuks fell victim to a debilitating medical diagnosis, which required regular treatment and seriously affected both his health and the energy levels needed for full time study.

“Despite these issues, Chuks still found time to fully commit to his studies and he was able to achieve a 2:1 degree – a phenomenal achievement from where he started.”

During his time as a student, Chuks also took an active role in the new Criminology Student Society and also ran for the role of Welfare Officer in the Students’ Union, which he narrowly missed out on by just eight votes.

Chuks said: “My experience in Swansea has been awesome and very rewarding, I have really enjoyed my studies and student life in Swansea and I am very excited to have achieved my degree and to be celebrating this at the Degree and Award Congregations this week – it is a very special celebration for me.

“My Head of Department Professor Kevin Haines, my personal tutor and tutors John Minkes, Dr Pamela Ugwudike, and Zoe Brooks-Green in the College were also very helpful and I would like to thank them for all their support over the last three years – it is the reason I achieved what I did.”

After completing his undergraduate degree, Chuks is now enjoying a well-deserved break and considering his next steps, which may include continuing with his studies through postgraduate study in the same area of Criminology and Criminal Justice.

“What I most admire about Chuks is his indomitable spirit,” added Dr Case.

“He has faced all of his challenges with a huge smile on his face and refusal to complain.

“He is greatly liked and respected by his fellow students and staff. It has been my pleasure to work with him and to know him. We wish Chuks every success for the future.”