From ₦35k monthly to seven figures: How Oluchi Enebeli became one of Nigeria’s first female-blockchain engineer


When I was walking through the streets of Lagos, I remember asking God, "Is this how my life will be from here on out? Is this all there is? I was pondering, "How do people rise above their circumstances?"

Who would have guessed that Oluchi Enebeli, one of the first female blockchain engineers in Nigeria, had at one point pondered the question, "How do people get over poverty?" When you take one look at the blockchain engineer based in Dubai, it is difficult to believe that there was ever a time when she was concerned about where she would lay her head each night.

But as she fought through tears to tell the story of how she became one of the most sought-after blockchain engineers in the country, I could tell that this wasn't your typical tech bro/sis story. She became one of the most sought-after blockchain engineers in the country. Despite her tears, she told the story.

Oluchi EnebeliOluchi Enebeli

It is possible to infer, based on how people view the term "tech bro," that working in the technology industry is a desirable place to build a career. Many people view the technology industry as the new oil and the place where the money is flowing. There is no denying that there is money to be made in the technology industry, as evidenced by the people who boast on Twitter about their million-dollar salaries and the fundraising announcements that occur every other day.

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Oluchi Enebeli is one of a unique breed of techies who have battled tooth and nail to become exceptional in their fields. Social media may have all the glitz and glamour, but behind the scenes, there is a special breed of techies who have fought tooth and nail to become exceptional.

Oluchi Enebeli, the second of seven children, was born in Lagos, Nigeria; however, because her father served in the military, her family moved around quite a bit. She is the second child of seven. Warri, the commercial capital of Delta State in Nigeria, features prominently in many of her most cherished memories from her childhood.

My father was in the military, and because of this, our family moved around a lot when we were growing up, which made it difficult for us to focus on our schoolwork. I received my education at home, and my father was my teacher.

" He focused most of his teaching on mathematics because he was under the impression that if you knew maths, you already knew everything else there was to know about the world. For example, you don't need to study biology in order to pass the test. It's insane, but that was the way of thinking that my dad had. He instructed us using a mathematics textbook that he had written himself, and he gave me the responsibility of working through the textbook's examples and coming up with answers.

It should come as no surprise that Enebeli inherited her passion for mathematics from her father. She went on to study applied mathematics at the University of Benin, also known as Unibend due to the difficulty of obtaining a degree from that institution.

" Back in those days, we used to refer to it as the "uni-bend" due to the fact that when you first enroll, you are straight, but the program gradually bends you until the final year, at which point it bends you completely. Because of this, we used to refer to the school as "uni bending school."

Innovation in technology

When Enebeli first learned about technology, she immediately knew that she wanted to explore space someday. On the other hand, she came to the realization that she could learn technology on her own without ever setting foot in a classroom and so she chose to major in applied mathematics rather than something related to technology.

The reason I decided to major in applied mathematics is actually quite humorous. When I was younger, my older brother oversaw the operation of our family's cybercafe. When it came time for him to return to school, it fell to me to take over the management of the establishment.

I was completely clueless when it came to computers and had no idea how to run a cybercafe. At the time, I was in the second year of secondary school, and all of the information we received in class regarding computers was theoretical. We hardly ever used the computer, and when we did, we had to line up in front of it and take it in turns in order to use it for even a few seconds at a time because the school only had one.

" Over time, I was able to educate myself on the ins and outs of computers, but I noticed that a lot of people were interested in learning about computers, and the majority of them were studying desktop publishing and graphic design. People were attending computer schools in order to learn about these topics.

Even my younger brother went on to complete his degree in computer science at a four-year college. The thought crossed my mind, "If this is all there is to it, then why do I need to go to the university to study it?" Consequently, the plan was to learn something more valuable in school and to learn computer science on the street because I saw a lot of people learning it everywhere.

Studying applied mathematics was the means by which students could acquire more valuable knowledge in school. The fact that Enebeli's daughter was following in her father's footsteps as a mathematician was especially exciting for Enebeli's father, who is also a mathematician. However, Enebeli's parents had no idea that although it appeared as though Enebeli was on the path to becoming a mathematician, the future had something entirely different in store for her.

Enebeli enjoyed her first year at Unibend and was enthusiastic about the upcoming academic year. Despite the fact that she was not a social butterfly, she was well-liked by the students who were always discussing their homework and examinations.

Additionally, she was on fire, achieving A+ grades right from the beginning of the semester. She painted a picture for me as she animatedly told me about her time spent in school, and I got the impression that she went from one nerd gathering to the next, making an impression on people and soaking up as much information as she could.

I was social academically, but I wasn't the kind of person who went to parties, so when I got into the 100 level, I became very social, but a social nerd. I was always willing to assist my classmates in finding answers to their homework questions. I was present everywhere; for example, you might have seen me in that library or that night class. Therefore, you could say that was the more outgoing side of me.

She continued to break academic records until she reached her third year of school, when she began to struggle with illnesses, which led to a decline in her performance.

A mission of the highest caliber

Oluchi Enebeli, Co-Founder Crevatal, and Founder Web3 LadiesOluchi’s first international travel for a hackathon in New York

It was essential for her to graduate at the top of her class for two reasons: first, she had to live up to the expectation that her brother had set, and second, her family required it.

Because of our relatives, we were required to maintain a first-class standing. My family consists of seven people, and although my father served in the military, we didn't have a lot of money growing up. The financial difficulties were very real, and as a result, I felt an additional amount of pressure when I decided to enroll in school.

Although Enebeli put in her best effort during her fourth year in an attempt to earn a first-class grade, she was ultimately unsuccessful. She claimed that she was too embarrassed to go back to her house because she was in such a state of despair.

She had disappointed not only her mother but also her four younger siblings.

" The objective was to finish in the top class, but I was unable to do so, and I came dangerously close to passing out.

Oluchi has admitted that there were times when she considered ending her life by taking her own life. It was wonderful news for the family when her brother, who had graduated with a first-class degree, was awarded a scholarship worth five million yen ($8,130). It was supposed to be her story as well, but it didn't turn out that way.

She couldn't bear the thought of facing her family and friends at home, so she made the decision to continue attending school. Because of this, she was able to see things from a different point of view, and it turned out to be the best decision she had ever made.

Enebeli came to the realization that his knowledge of technology only extended as far as desktop publishing and graphic design. She was shocked to learn that the students who were acting irresponsibly by barely coming to class because they were working tech jobs on the side were onto something significant. She was surprised that she had not noticed this earlier. That was everything that she required; it represented the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel for her, and she remarked,

I did not graduate at the top of my class in school, but that does not mean I cannot graduate at the top of my class in life.

She came to the conclusion that the less-than-serious students who frequently juggled software engineering with their studentship were accumulating useful experience and connections, and as a result, she made the decision to adopt the lifestyle.

When Enebeli was in school, having a job in the tech industry while also attending classes was not the norm. However, times have changed.

A classmate of mine from back in the day was very interested in networking. I had no idea it was even possible for him to be working and going to school at the same time while also taking classes in networking. In those days, it wasn't very common, but these days, a lot of people are both working and going to school at the same time.

She underwent a mental transformation and enrolled in networking classes with the goal of earning the Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) certification.

She was able to return home at this point because she had a clear idea of where her life was going. She was able to deliver the devastating news to her family once she discovered a silver lining in her second-class upper cloud.

On the other hand, Enebeli's father had other plans that did not include pursuing IT certifications. She had already broken his heart by failing to get a first class, and she was about to break it again by refusing to do what he wanted.

During her time serving in the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), he intended for her to manage his electronics store so that he could use his connections to secure a position for her in an oil company after she completed her service.

Even though Enebeli's father tried to convince her otherwise, she was adamant that a career in technology was the way to go for her. She was determined to pursue a career in technology with every ounce of her being, regardless of whether or not anyone was willing to assist her.

The technology is difficult.

Oluchi Enebeli

Enebeli left Warri on March 1, 2016, to move to Lagos, known as Nigeria's Silicon Valley, so that she could pursue her dreams of working in the technology industry on her own.

Despite the fact that she was born in Lagos, she didn't know many people in the city because she had only spent a short time there. It was difficult for her to find a place to live, and she had trouble making connections, but she didn't care. The game plan was for her to get an internship as soon as she arrived, save up enough money to take her CCNA exams, and then be well on her way to becoming a successful tech entrepreneur.

Unfortunately, it was difficult to find internships, and asking her family for financial support was not an option. This was primarily due to the fact that she left without her father's permission, and the family was in need of financial support.

The longer she went without finding an internship, the more difficult it became for her.

Why is it that no one is willing to take a chance on me? She questioned herself.

It was difficult for her to think back to those times, and despite the fact that I had a slow Internet connection, I could still hear the anguish in her voice.

It was a funny story; I was moving around from place to place trying to find people to stay with.

But it wasn't a joke at all. Nothing was funny about her situation, from her failure to graduate with a first-class degree to the fact that she was rejected everywhere she turned; as a result, she came dangerously close to losing the will to continue at some point.

When I was walking through the streets of Lagos, I remember asking God, "Is this how my life will be from here on out? Is this all there is? My mind kept going back to the question, "How do people get out of poverty?" At that point, it was a fight for survival. You are familiar with the circumstance in which there is neither anyone nor any connections.

" It makes you think about people who were born in slums without a fighting chance, and when you look around you, you can't find anything that even comes close to resembling hope.

"Hope; it's critical to have hope."

And being optimistic helped her to maintain her strength. She was in desperate need of an internship, but no one was willing to give her a chance, so she made the decision to learn WordPress at a fellowship that she was already attending in the hopes that it would help her land an internship.

And she was successful in obtaining it.

Crenet Tech Labs made the decision to gamble on her, and she will be forever grateful to Adegbenga Agoro, the company's founder, for providing her with that first opportunity. In addition to providing her with financial support that made day-to-day life simpler, the fact that she was successful in obtaining the internship gave her confidence that she was heading in the right direction. She first became aware of the blockchain technology as a result of her participation in an incredible learning experience.

The invention of blockchain technology

Oluchi Enebeli, Co-Founder Crevatal, and Founder Web3 LadiesOluchi during her internship at Crenet Labs

During the course of her internship, she took part in a hackathon that introduced her to a different aspect of technology known as the blockchain. Even though she enjoyed it, she found it to be extremely overwhelming because she was still trying to figure out how everything related to technology worked.

Despite this, her interest was piqued by it. Both the fact that it was decentralized and the idea behind cryptography were appealing to her. And just like that, she was able to put her degree in applied mathematics to good use.

My first thought was, How does this thing even function? How exactly does information get passed around in a decentralized network where there are multiple nodes?

The blockchain was still in its infancy, and only a select few people were aware of its existence. She reasoned that if she entered the market at an earlier stage, before it became oversaturated, she would have a better chance of being successful.

Oluchi Enebeli, Co-Founder Crevatal, and Founder Web3 LadiesWhen she started learning blockchain

She began to learn a lot about blockchain and participated in a number of hackathons. For one of these, she traveled to Manhattan, New York, in the United States, where she met Eromosele Omomhenle, who was working at Microsoft at the time as a Principal Technology Strategist.

She was able to secure a position as a blockchain engineer at Sterling Bank as a result of this connection, and her career has only progressed upwards since then.

She has previous experience working with some of the most successful blockchain companies in the world, such as Binance, Crypto.com, Bundle, and the newly established Nestcoin.

Oluchi Enebeli, Co-Founder Crevatal, and Founder Web3 Ladies

After starting out as an intern making 35,000 ($56) per month, Enebeli is now able to command a salary in the seven-figure range. In addition to that, she is now a co-founder of Crevatal, a Web3 design agency, as well as Web3 Ladies, a community that she established in order to encourage more women to enter the industry.

Enebeli is indebted to her parents, siblings, Clement Hugbo, her co-founder at Crevatal, and anyone else who was willing to take a chance on her for her accomplishments to date.

However, she maintains that everyone is the architect of their own future, and that every choice we make based on advice, our will, or under pressure is meaningless because, in the end, you decide what happens to you. She believes that this is the case because you are the one who decides what happens to you.