Multiplying Good: Ijeoma Oleru

It’s time for Multiplying Good, an award given to people making a positive impact in the community. It’s in partnership with Leaders Credit Union.

We introduce you to a student who is leading by example, while showing that you’re never too young to make a lasting impact.

Multiplying Good Feb 2022

Ijeoma Oleru is a junior at the University School of Jackson.

When she is not studying or doing homework, she’s helping younger students reach their full potential.

“When I was a sophomore during the spring, I tutored a sixth grader, but it was just me on my own because during the pandemic we didn’t really have any clubs or groups or anything. So I just did it on my own and I really liked it,” Oleru said.

But Oleru wanted to get more students involved and decided to create a school mentoring and tutoring program between middle school and high school students.

“We meet with students every Tuesday and Thursday, and we just work with them on organizational skills like their homework and studying for their classes,” Oleru said.

Oleru’s mentee is 6th grader named Owen Jordan.

He says he has learned a lot, and under Oleru’s guidance, he is already seeing progress.

“She’s really nice and she teaches me when I’m wrong, and she helps me with all my homework. I’ve learned how to do my math better and my English,” Jordan said.

“I think it helps make high school less scary because you kind of find a friend in somebody who is much older, and then you see that they’re not that much different. They’ve just matured and they’ve learned different organizational and study skills as they’ve gotten older. So, hopefully, during this program they can start learning that from a younger age and it can help them,” Oleru said.

Teachers say the amount of planning, work, and follow through by Oleru has been unparalleled. And the respect among her peers is unmatched.

“I have a really good relationship with both of mine, and I think it’s just easy to have a good relationship because everyone’s nice and you don’t feel pressured, and it has helped improve my grades and my study habits for sure,” said eighth grader Maggie Norris.

Oleru says not only does she see changes among the students she mentors, but just as importantly, she is growing as well.

“I think I’ve just gotten more confident in using my voice and taking charge,” Oleru said.

And she offers advice for other young people who may have a vision to make an impact in their community.

“Find good people to support you. I had really good counselors and teachers around me who really helped me get this program started. And also be really passionate about it and work really hard on it, and you’ll get good results,” Oleru said.

Next year the mentoring program will have the chance to be voted in as a club, having a lasting impact long after Oleru graduates.

If you know someone doing good in their community, you can nominate them for the Multiplying Good award here.