Gerald Jide Aluka’s thirst for knowledge has been the driving force in his life. He has always had a curious nature, going through his secondary education in a Catholic seminary school. Despite political and economic volatility in Nigeria, Gerald succeeded in completing a bachelor’s in statistics from Imo State University in 2006. While his formal education ended for the moment, his life experience never stopped.
Born to an entrepreneurial father, Gerald originally dreamt of joining the family business. However, when the family passed through difficult circumstances, he sought employment elsewhere and has since held many jobs. He even started his own publishing company, Griot’s Lounge, a gathering of African storytellers who tap into their African roots yet remain open to the global community.
Reflecting on his personal and professional experience, Gerald realized he wanted to improve his managerial skills. Determined to pursue further education to help him meet his goal, Gerald joined UBI’s MBA programme in February, 2022, and has already been able to apply what he’s learned in his personal and professional life. The programme has been instrumental in enabling his vision of what he can accomplish in business. He’s revived Griot’s Lounge, his publishing company, looking to use the theory he’s learned to grow it. He appreciates the specific and applicable lessons learned, as well as the relationships developed with the teachers, and the promising connections he’s made with his fellow students for future business collaborations.
Given his quest for knowledge, it’s no wonder that he is known as an advocate for education in his community. His publishing company, Griot’s Lounge, is a good example of the help he tries to offer. He supports local authors in their efforts to write books telling African stories with a global appeal. In addition to helping individuals, this also helps local markets grow. Selling their books worldwide means people in different cultures can understand themselves better through reading them.
Though he has published many books through Griot’s Lounge, he noticed that students in the local public schools weren’t buying books as they weren’t easily affordable to them. Through social media and other platforms, he advertised internationally for individuals to purchase his books in bulk so he can donate them locally. Several people immediately committed to the collaboration and he was able to print the books and deliver them to local schools himself, inspiring and building with the children and administrators.
Despite opposition, Gerald continues to seek knowledge through both formal education and personal experience. He uses the knowledge he gains to help others in a variety of ways. Through the MBA programme, he is learning valuable management skills to add to his natural leadership skills. He is applying his education and experience to grow his publishing company, Griot’s Lounge. With his will and determination, there is no limit to what he will accomplish!