by Dauda Sow
This is a story of a “library-made man”; which is not based on a myth, but on true facts. It starts with, once upon a time, a young man and a book. I received primary education in my village (Hombo) in northern Senegal until I obtained the certificate of elementary studies and afterward; I returned to my hometown (Dakar), the Senegalese capital to pursue high school studies, where I obtained the baccalaureate in 1994.
“The only chance I had was to become a teacher in an Arabic elementary school, because the national education system does not then recognize my diploma for graduate studies, so I went to the rural area to teach Arabic, I decided to give up teaching after a long reflection, so I came back to Dakar to look for opportunities to pursue my studies.”
I knew that the task wouldn’t be a piece of cake for me, being jobless with no financial support in a city where everyone is trying to survive. In this uncertain adventure, I began to frequent the library of the information resource center of the United States Embassy, whose services were free of charge. It was a way for me to improve the little English that I had learned at school and to busy myself. But the paradox was; I did not understand much of what I read, but I still continued to read and read again, with this method I managed to write small texts and poems.
I started to have the taste of reading, and that what lead me to the University Library of Cheikh Anta Diop University, where I obtained a part-time job as a library clerk, and I was definitely hired after three years. I took advantage of the quality of human and informational resources that the library offered to build a good background of knowledge. Perseverance and self-sacrifice made me worth to be admitted to the School of Library sciences (EBAD) on an exceptional basis in 2013, and I was able to obtain one of the best performances in the history of the school, with a Professional License in library and Information Sciences.
In conclusion; besides my perseverance, the library gave me enormous opportunities to be in touch with knowledge when there was no chance for me to pursue my studies.
About the Author
This post was authored by Daouda Sow. He is Librarian at the Central Library of Cheikh Anta Diop University of Dakar, Senegal. Connect with Daouda on Facebook.
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