Nigerian teen accepted into all 8 Ivy League schools | "I just decided to shoot my shot"

Nigerian teen accepted into all 8 Ivy League schools | "I just decided to shoot my shot"

She is focused on inspiring young women of marginalized identities through a organization she founded as a sophomore in high school.

A teenager from Florida has been accepted into all eight Ivy League schools and eight other universities.

Ashley Adirika had always dreamt of going to an Ivy league school and on Ivy Day, when all of the prestigious schools announce their first-year admissions. she was in for a wonderful surprise. Ashley had eight tabs open on her computer, one for each applicant portal and she got an acceptance letter from each one, reports CNN.

Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Penn, Princeton and Yale, all of them gave a place to her. Ashley was surrounded by family members that day, including her four siblings, who squealed with delight at each new acceptance letter. This is a huge milestone for the 17-year-old. a child of an emigrant mother who came to the United States from Nigeria, thirty years ago. 




She said, "I just decided to shoot my shot at all of them and see if it would land. And I had no idea that I would get accepted into all of them. On Ivy Day, I remember crying a lot and just being extremely surprised."

Adirika's aspirations have evolved over time, from being a teacher to sitting in the Oval Office, but she is now focused on inspiring young women of marginalized identities through her organization, Our Story, Our Worth, which she founded as a high school sophomore, per ABC News. When she goes to Harvard University in the fall, she says she hopes to learn more about herself, her role in the world, and how to maximize the influence she has in strengthening communities.




Adirika expresses gratitude to her mother and elder sisters for motivating and supporting her to accomplish her life goals. She said, "They empowered me and supported me throughout the entire way. So whatever dream I have, big or small, they've just been my No. 1 fans." 

She graduated from Miami Beach Senior High School graduate and was the student government president in her senior year. She becomes a member of an exclusive club as each Ivy League school has accepted less than 12% of its applications since 2018. This year, Yale accepted 4.5 percent of applicants, Columbia accepted 3.7 percent, and Harvard accepted only 3.2 percent, the lowest percentage in the university's history. 




Adirika credits her participation in speech and debate teams with giving her the courage to speak up. She says, "I'm someone who loves to learn new things, and so debate gave me that opportunity. But more than anything, it just gave me the platform to talk about things that I believed in and talk about things that were important to me. And so that is something that I am just forever indebted to Carol City for introducing me to that platform."




When Adirika was in eighth grade, Bess Rodriguez, a seventh grade English language arts teacher at Carol City Middle School, recruited her for the school's speech and debate team. She says, "Everybody knew Ashley because of how smart she was. She had test scores through the roof; she's involved in all different activities." When we went to debates, the other kids, when they saw her come in the room, they would say, 'Oh no, we have to debate Ashley.' You know, she just got a reputation like that."

When Rodrigues heard of the news that Adirika has been accepted into all Ivy League schools, she was happy and proud. She said, "It was just such amazing news. Other times you're frustrated, you're exhausted as a teacher. Then you have a student like Ashley come along and it makes everything worthwhile."

Representative Cover Image Source: Getty Images/TriggerPhoto

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