• Her tutors and counsellors told her to study cosmetology instead of science.
  • However, she did not give up on her quest to study science.
  • Eugenia Duodu is now a PhD holder helping young ones who want to study science and matns in Toronto.

Eugenia Duodu is now a PhD holder helping young ones who want to study science and maths in Toronto

Eugenia Duodu is a 31-year-old Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of a company using maths and science to impact lives in Toronto, Canada.

Dr Duodu who was discouraged by her parents from studying the two subjects she loves in her teens is now a PhD holder in Chemistry from the University of Toronto. She is also the CEO of Visions of Science, an institution using STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) to help less privileged children and youth.

She said that her teachers asked her to neglect her dream of becoming a science enthusiast at the university and consider cosmetology.

She told Canadian-based ‘The Globe and Mail’ that such conversations with her counsellors made her feel she took a wrong decision.

“To be honest, I can never say for sure, but I do know the conversation made me feel like maybe I was wrong; maybe I couldn’t do it.”

“I never approached school thinking it was too hard for me. It wasn’t always an easy journey in the school system. I struggled with perceptions of myself, never sure I was good enough,” she continued with her narration to The Globe and Mail.

However, after a stint with a summer mentorship program at the University of Toronto for students of black origin, she was convinced of her choice to study science.

After acquiring her PhD in Chemistry, Dr Duodu said she is “comfortable with who I am, what I’ve gone through.”

She dreams of encouraging the youth, especially girls, to develop an interest in STEM. Through her charity which is running on a $1-million annual budget with 120 volunteers she is supporting at least 700 youth from Grades 3 to 12.

She said “We’re seeing incredible outcomes. Science on a fundamental level is about critical thinking. We need youth to not be afraid to go through that process.”

When asked to advise young ones who love STEM, Dr Duodu said: “You are here; you deserve to be here; just claim your place.”