Interview with Abiodun Gabriel – Candidate for the office of the Assistant General Secretary

MediVoice: Hi, can you introduce yourself?

Candidate: I am Abiodun Gabriel Arowele. A part two (2) medical student of Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria. I am a man who believes in humanity and who believes our time here on earth should be spent worthwhile.

MediVoice: Great belief. In your own perspective, what is your description of a life spent worthwhile?

Candidate: A life worthwhile will be one that benefits not just the person living it but the people around him. A life that is worth writing about after one is gone.

MediVoice: That’s great and actually true. So, what are three words you’d use to describe yourself? And why?

Candidate: Humane, persistent and honest. Humane because I believe all human beings should be treated fairly and as much as possible equally because it’s the same life after all. Persistent, with which anything is possible. Even living requires persistency and consistency of the heart and lungs. Honesty is the one virtue that can make a man stand out, it distinguishes you and sets a niche for you.

MediVoice: What makes you so confident that you are all these?

Candidate: I don’t know if it’s the same for everyone but I am naturally humane. I naturally feel the need to make people feel that they matter, I feel the need to be fair to everyone, it’s why I’m friendly, approachable and easy-going. Being persistent cannot be overemphasized. I have seen that people who are persistent tend to achieve their deepest desires and I have built myself to be that way. Coming into medical school required me to be persistent, being a Musician required me to be persistent, being a hairstylist required me to be persistent, to mention but a few. Being honest is the upbringing I got growing up, I remember my Dad always saying he can’t work for anyone and his boss won’t like him. He always said that honesty wins the heart of any human, being raised by him has made me conscious of honesty and I always strive to ensure that I am.

MediVoice: Wow. An automatic shout-out to dad for raising an honest individual. I see persistency has gotten you into many places. As Gabriel, what are your 5 core values?

Candidate: My five core values are: Intelligence, Integrity, Indispensable, Enthusiasm and Excellence.

MediVoice: Okay. Have you had any prior leadership experience within or outside IFUMSA?

Candidate: Yes. Outside IFUMSA. I was the Assistant class rep of my class when I was in UI. I also was in charge of interviews as a member of the press club of FASSA. I was also the manager of an ultramodern hotel in Lagos to mention but a few.

MediVoice: Wow, these are very great positions. I’m sure from these, you are quite experienced. But then IFUMSA is a whole different ball game, so how have the above experiences made you fit for the office you are about to take on?

Candidate: Yes, I am aware that everything comes with its own peculiarities. I wasn’t born a manager nor was I born a tutor but with the right mindset, one that is open to flexibility and persistence, excellence can be achieved. This I will strive at all times to achieve in my tenure. I have been a tutor for years. I have dealt with a lot of students not just as a teacher but as a guide, a friend and a mentor.

MediVoice: What does being a tutor have to do with your aspired role?

Candidate: A tutor is an assistant, a teacher, energy and more. Being an AGS is not equal to being a tutor but there are similarities which I aforementioned and a good tutor should make a good Assistant General Secretary since he/she will be involved with the academic affairs of the Part 1 students.

MediVoice: Well spoken. We hope to see all of the aforementioned. Why did you decide to run for AGS?

Candidate: Thank you for acknowledging that. By God’s Grace, I’d do as expected. I won’t be talking AGS if I didn’t see an AGS or know an AGS, so I would like to acknowledge the fact that the current AGS actually has a part to play in my decision to run for AGS. I see what he does and they appeal to me a lot, it speaks to me in a way that is so convincing. I am running for the post of AGS because serving people appeals to me. It would be a great privilege serving Ifumsaites, it’s a worthwhile thing to do. Like I said earlier, I believe in living a life worthwhile. Thank you.

MediVoice: Do you think this reason is enough for you to be able to manage the office peradventure you get it?

Candidate: I am running for the office of the AGS not only because I have the desire and persuasion to serve but also because I can.

MediVoice: What specific qualities do you possess that would make you the right fit for this post?

Candidate: I am ;
Cooperative and understanding.
Approachable and ready to help.
Friendly and good at relating with people.
Passionate and enthusiastic.
Intelligent and creative.

With these qualities and my eagerness to learn, admitting that I don’t know everything or not infallible, I strongly believe that I am very fit as the next Assistant General Secretary of IFUMSA.

MediVoice: Great qualities and actually fit for the job. What do you think is required for the post you are contesting for, responsibility wise that is.

Candidate: Diligence, sacrifice, accountability and intelligence.

MediVoice: Hmmmm….nice qualities, but do you think you have all these?

Candidate: By God’s Grace, my actions when I’m the AGS will speak that I am DILIGENT, SACRIFICIAL, ACCOUNTABLE and INTELLIGENT. 2 of which is required of a medical student. Can you guess which two?

MediVoice: Diligence and intelligence.

Candidate: You’re very right👏👏👏. I remove my cap for you.

MediVoice: It’s actually an obvious answer. Can you shed more light on your main agenda(s)?

Candidate: Yes, thank you. The first of my constitutional duty is to assist the general secretary on all matters and that I will do because he will be my friend, I will seek to assist him at all times whether he is present or absent. You will agree with me that assistance is that thing that every man needs even the Assistant General Secretary 😁.

One very important part of my agenda is the academic affairs and intimation of ifumsites, particularly the Part 1 students with the activities of IFUMSA.

The provost in the person of Professor Ijadunola stated and I reiterate “med school is your stressor.” I will see to reducing the stress in as much capacity that lies within me. A wise tactic I will employ is the involvement of many other brains which is the way most successful organizations run like Dangote Nigeria Limited which has a lot of intelligent staff members. I will be liaising with fellow students from my class and other classes like Tenacious medicos, Exypnos medicos e.t.c to organize tutorials, study groups (a method I find the most effective for learning as a medical student; it is my style), and mock exams.

I will also liaise with professional hands like Dr Bush, the PA John and other tutors on behalf of the Part 1 students, and practising Doctors for the clinical students. I really intend on reducing the stress of learning the numerous stuff that medical students have to learn.

I will also further strengthen the ongoing mentorship plan by seeking that there is first of all familiarity between the mentors and mentees by organising meetings where the mentors get to talk to and even teach their mentees.
I will also see to issuing a certificate of participation to everyone who has participated and made studying easier. It is worthwhile to issue certificates because of the sacrifice that must have been offered by participants.

I will also see to organizing mini get-togethers for the mentors and participants of activities that involve academic activities of the association. We came to med school to read in the first place. This is very paramount and I know that I will have the backing of ifumsites in terms of participation and even sponsorship.
And this, I believe will gear Ifumsaites to pay their annual dues because they see their money is being used for value. The major reason why people spend on anything, the very reason why people pay 500k for iphone12 and MacBook is the value they receive.

I must add that the payment of annual dues is not a constitutional duty of the AGS but the executive council to which the AGS belongs. If finances are not available, it would affect the performance of the AGS. That is the reason I have thought of finances while thinking about how I can better the association when I am AGS.
In a bid to encourage people to pay their annual dues, I will advise the executive council to present a branded product that does not necessarily have to be expensive like a wristband alongside issuing a receipt. Truth is, people love to pay less for more knowing that they will get a branded product and that their money will be used for the academic affairs of the association to which they belong, a good number of ifumsites cannot but pay their annual dues.

In a bid to fulfil excellently my 7th constitutional duty, I will organize a super, doper and vibe-filled FRESHERS party which every fresher would seek to experience. I feel like keeping this idea to myself🙈🙈 because I consider such FRESHERS lucky for I myself can only but envisage the outcome of the party. There will be rap battles, music performance, skills display, item 7 upon item7 even item7+ 😊. I will ensure to do this because it is my constitutional duty. Besides, it is a thing for me, I think I’m not the only medical student who likes parties 🙈😂😁. Let me stop here for now regarding my agenda so I can move on to further questions.

MediVoice: You have such great plans. The idea of wrist bands is a good one and also fostering a good connection between mentors and mentees is really going to be an added advantage in increasing the learning process. However, I want to question some issues you raised there. First of all, what if reducing stress is way out of your control, you have actually raised our hopes already, so how will you handle dashing it or will I say compensate us?

Secondly, what relationship do you have with practising doctors that you feel you can reach them to take tutorials?

Candidate: First of all, I must say that I go through academic stress so as the AGS, as I am seeking to ease it, I’m also doing myself good. Secondly, I have been to the 7th day Adventist hospital, I have also been to the Boluwatife clinic, I can invite them for a summit for the clinical students because I behaved well with them.

MediVoice: Hmmmmmmm…in essence you established a rapport with them, so inviting them won’t be much of an issue, hopefully. Still on your agenda, what provision would you make for people who don’t have money at the time of payment for annual dues, not everyone is born with a silver spoon, you know.

Candidate: Yes, not everyone is born with a silver spoon, but I feel if anyone can be in the university and studying medicine, he should be able to pay a thousand naira for the IFUMSA’s annual dues. I will discuss with members of the executive council to allow for payment to be made instalmentally (twice).

MediVoice: That’s a very good idea you have come up with, instalment payments seems more convenient. So, why should we vote for Gabriel Arowele and not Dunmomi Durojaye?

Candidate: Because I have the interest of IFUMSA at heart. Because I wouldn’t have come out if I wasn’t ready to serve. Because I will strive to be excellent in performing my duties and because I am sincere (I admit that I am but a man like the rest of other ifumsites) and ready to learn and improve.

MediVoice: What are your plans in moving the association forward?

Candidate: My plan in moving the association forward is synergy. Synergy with the executive council and synergy with ifumsites other than members of the executive council.

MediVoice: What inspired your tagline or motto?

Candidate: I chose it because as a med student doing other things aside from medicine, I will have to sacrifice some pleasures like seeing movies and all. What I am saying is that as a student, you can’t read 24 hours. You will have other things to do in between, some of which I would sacrifice to be able to perform my duties as the AGS. I only mentioned watching movies as one of those things students do aside from reading.

MediVoice: So sacrifice is one of your bedrocks, that’s fair. Finally, do you think you stand a chance at the polls?

Candidate: I do stand a chance of winning because my ideas are great and I know that because I have discussed them with a good number of Ifumsites and non-ifumsites and their response was “You have a great plan.” I have also thought over them and I know that they will appeal to ifumsites.

MediVoice: Alright, thanks for honouring this interview. Wishing you best of luck at the polls. May the best man win. Thank you!

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