First year Architectural Drafting & Design student is WITC scholarship recipient
Deino Wonosikou has always had a deep appreciation for the impact and role architecture plays in the broader community. It is an appreciation she gained while growing up and attending schools in several different countries, including Cameroun, Nigeria, and Portugal. And it’s an appreciation she is now growing into as a first year student in the Architectural Drafting & Design program at Dunwoody College of Technology.
“I was 6 when I knew,” she said. “I knew I liked drawing, science, and math – architecture puts those things together.”
Wonosikou’s educational journey is as interesting as it is unique.
Born in Lagos, Nigeria, Wonosikou moved first to Cameroun before moving back to Nigeria for school. She then attended a school in Portugal before returning home to Nigeria to attend Babcock University High School, graduating at age 16, after skipping two grades.
Even at that young age, Wonosikou knew she wanted to pursue a career in architecture and moved to the United States with her older sister, who was planning to attend Mankato State University.
Women In Technical Careers Scholarship
She originally enrolled at a local community college, and planned to transfer into the University of Minnesota’s Architecture program after finishing her generals. But when she heard about Dunwoody from a relative, she decided to check it out.
It was then that she discovered the Women In Technical Careers Scholarship and decided to apply.
“I have three other siblings and I want to be considerate of my parents,” Wonosikou said. “The WITC scholarship really helps.”
And it isn’t just the tuition support that Wonosikou appreciates, but the opportunity to meet other students, and be paired with a mentor, are huge benefits.
“I didn’t know anybody here when I started,” she said. “With WITC I was able to meet people. That is what I appreciate.”
Approaching architecture with a worldview
Wonosikou said her experiences living in different countries and cities really impacted her desire to study architecture.
“I am fascinated by the stories behind the buildings, why they were created,” she said. “Where you are influences the type of architecture that happens. Living in places like Africa you appreciate using what you have and being resourceful.
“History also plays such an awesome role in architecture. It can be a way to give back to your community.”
After completing her Associate degree in Architectural Drafting, Wonosikou plans to continue on and earn her Bachelor of Architecture from Dunwoody as well. And she is already thinking about the impact she can have on her community.
“Housing is a problem everywhere,” she said. “Architecture can help solve that.”
Wonosikou is only in her first year, but she is already in love with the program.
“At Dunwoody we are doing so many things – it is awesome,” she said. “I look forward to everyday. I just look forward to doing something and building something. My family is very supportive of me. I show them everything, and we just talk about it.”
Serving the community through her field
When Wonosikou first started, she planned to focus on residential architecture, but she is now considering commercial as well.
“I want a way to have an impact on as many places as I possibly can,” she said. “That could be fixing a housing problem, creating schools, or hospitals. I think I’m still finding myself, but I don’t want to do just one thing.”
In the future, Wonosikou said she wants to work in both Minnesota and Nigeria, since she has fallen in love with the city, but still wants to give back to her community.
“WITC has given me the privilege to focus on my education,” she said. “And I’m really grateful for that. I don’t think I would have ever come here without the WITC program.”