Evelyn Uba has always desired to practice law. Just 18 years old when she arrived in the US from Nigeria in 1983, she started her college career but ran into a number of difficulties.
After her father had a stroke, she struggled financially and eventually put off finishing her school to start a family and get married, according to Good Morning America.
She went back to California Southern Law School in 2005 and finished her studies there in 2011.
Since that time, she has been working tirelessly to ace the bar exam and keep a promise she made to her late father.
Over the past ten years, she took the exam at least ten times. She passed the California state bar test in January of last year, and in an uplifting moment captured on camera, she celebrated with her family after receiving the news she had been waiting for.
I’ve always wanted to go law school. After my youngest child reached two, I enrolled in a school I could afford that allowed me to balance being a mother, going to work, and paying my bills.
I retook the test over ten times. I eventually stopped counting, but giving up was not in my vocabulary, Uba told reporters.
The mom of four works as a welfare professional, studying for the exam during every free moment while being a wife and caring for her children.
She has sacrificed countless moments with her family to make her dream come true. It was those sacrifices that Uba said kept her motivated
My daughter, Naeche, once said to me, ‘Mom, if you give up now, you can’t get your time back.
Then what would you have gained out of all the missed time you could’ve spent with us?’ So that always stuck in my head, and I knew the only time I’d give up is when I’m dead,” Uba said.
She took the test in October, receiving her results on January 8th. She opened them as she had done many times before, shocked to finally see the results she had been waiting so long to receive.
As her family applauded her in person and on Facetime, she bounced around and danced. She also started kissing a picture of her deceased father, whom she had vowed to honor.
More than 400,000 people have now watched the video on Twitter. I experienced a significant weight loss for all of us.
Naeche Vincent, Uba’s daughter, said, “It was so surreal, and I finally feel like my mom can live out her dream and do whatever she wants with this license.”
As a criminal defense lawyer, Uba intends to start assisting low-income citizens of underserved and marginalized communities.
She wants her experience to encourage others to pursue their goals with perseverance.