Becoming a doctor is a great feat for anyone. Imagine the feeling of accomplishment if all three of your children became doctors. Nigerian immigrants and parents of Gloria, Victor and Blessing Oyeniyi know that success as the brother-sister trio each earned the title of doctor.
Dr. Gloria Oyeniyi and Dr. Blessing Oyeniyi graduated from John P. and Kathrine G. McGovern Medical School at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston. Dr. Victor Oyeniyi earned a pharmacy doctorate from Texas Southern University. Born in Nigeria, the three siblings and their parents moved to Texas in 1995. All of the children developed an interest and passion for healthcare and dreamed of becoming doctors.
The Oyeniyis as parents only hoped for their children to become medical or professional doctors. “They (their parents) wanted and they aspired for us to be doctors, whether it was medical or professional. They just wanted us to have the title, and be the best at anything we chose to be,” Victor told FOX 26 Houston.⠀⠀
After moving to the United States, the parents of the children had to start over their higher education. “We were on welfare for a while, coming back in the U.S and starting back up. My mom was a janitor at her first job when she started back over, and they both went back and got their college degrees and their master’s degrees,” Gloria said.
In an Instagram post, shared more details about his parents sacrifices, writing: “My father and mother left their professional careers of being a pilot of over 19 years and a bank manager, respectively, only to begin afresh in the U.S. re-enrolling in college as freshmen and working odd jobs ultimately getting their SECOND bachelors and master’s degrees all to sustain us all because they had higher aspirations for us. Though things are now better in Nigeria, this is more a testament of their will and sacrifice than it is about our achievements here.”⠀⠀
The siblings used the story of their parents to help motivate them through the difficult tasks of becoming a doctor. Their bond with each other also served as a push during tough times. “We’re pretty close, so we would just tell each other, ‘Listen, we’re doing this. We can accomplish this,'” said Gloria.⠀
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Christina Santi is a news and culture writer for EBONY.com. Born and raised in the Bronx, New York, she considers herself a well-read, not so traditional feminist with a heavy interest in music, fashion and pop culture. Christina currently lives in New York City, where she refers to her Cuban & Jamaican descent often while writing about her experiences as a first-generation Afro-Latinx in America. She also devotes time writing personalized reading material for her tutees and turning ideas into words for streetwear brand, PUER By Noel Bronson.