The Rhodes Scholarship is the oldest (first awarded in 1902) and perhaps most prestigious international scholarship programme, enabling outstanding young people from around the world to study at the University of Oxford.

Nigerian-Canadian Student, Jeffrey Fasegha is one of 11 Canadian students that was awarded the scholarship to study at the University of Oxford this year. Watch a video profile of Jeffrey here.

Jeffrey graduated from the Faculty of Arts & Science in June with a Bachelor of Commerce degree in finance from Rotman Commerce with minors in psychology and economics. A member of University College, he believes in using innovation and entrepreneurship to improve the lives of people around the world.

“It is an absolute honour,” Fasegha said. “I thank God for the opportunity to further my research into how we can use innovation as a tool to solve our most pressing problems. I am immensely grateful to my family, my friends and to the university for their support throughout the process. It truly takes a village.

Jeffrey focuses on using entrepreneurship and innovation as a tool for economic and social development – particularly in Nigeria, where he was born. At U of T, he led independent research on social enterprises in the Nigerian energy industry, founded the Black Career Conference, co-founded Black Rotman Commerce and held several leadership positions in finance student organizations where he worked to increase equity for marginalized groups.

He is currently working on his startup Fyyne, a platform for hair services where “anyone can make a living with their skills.” At Oxford, Fasegha plans to pursue a master’s degree in African studies and public policy with a focus on the innovation economy.

U of T President Meric Gertler congratulated the two scholars.

“We are all incredibly proud of Ikran and Jeffrey, our newest Rhodes Scholars,” President Gertler said.

“Through their record of scholarly achievement, leadership and social engagement, they are an inspiration to all members of the University of Toronto community. We look forward to hearing about their accomplishments in the years to come.”

“This is wonderful news for these two exceptional students,” said Melanie Woodin, dean of the Faculty of Arts & Science.

“Ikran and Jeffrey both possess the qualities that define a Rhodes Scholar – academic excellence, character, leadership and a commitment to making the world a better place – and have contributed to the Faculty in remarkable ways. I am so proud and excited for them to have received this honour.”