In a remarkable achievement, Somtochi Ugorji, a 22-year-old Nigerian-born student, has emerged as the best-graduating student at Loyola Marymount University. Ugorji’s outstanding academic performance earned him the prestigious position of valedictorian at the university’s 2023 graduation ceremony. However, it was not only his academic prowess that captivated the audience. It was also the heartfelt embrace of his Nigerian roots and cultural heritage.
During his valedictory speech, Ugorji proudly identified himself as Nigerian. He took a step further and used the opportunity to share his Igbo heritage with the crowd. Drawing upon his cultural background, he introduced the phrase “Igbo Kwenu” to the audience. Explaining its significance, Ugorji highlighted that in Igbo culture, “Igbo Kwenu” serves as an endorsement and agreement. It represents the collective strength and unity shared by the Igbo people.
Ugorji’s passion for his heritage resonated with those present, inviting them to participate in his cultural tradition. He taught the audience how to respond whenever he chanted “Igbo Kwenu,” the crowd enthusiastically embraced the opportunity to connect with his heritage.
The video capturing this memorable moment has been widely shared and admired, showcasing Ugorji’s ability to unite diverse communities and foster cultural appreciation. As a shining example of academic excellence and cultural pride, Ugorji’s achievements inspire both his fellow students and Nigerians worldwide.