When Jessica Ofurie came to the United States from Nigeria five years ago, she already knew she wanted to be a lawyer and dedicate herself to public service.
She did not yet know that homelessness in America was the issue she would take on, because she had no idea of how widespread the problem is.
“The thing that surprised me most was that there were so many homeless people sleeping on the streets in rags,” Ofurie said, of her initial impressions of life in the United States. “I thought that only happened in African countries.”
Soon after arriving in the United States, Ofurie enrolled at North Shore Community College, which was near her family’s new home in Salem, Massachusetts. In 2015, she earned her associate degree in liberal arts, and her 3.74 GPA helped her win a scholarship to Northeastern.
“When I was in Nigeria growing up, my friends would always say I should be a lawyer because I argued so well and I’m so quick to point out injustice,” said Ofurie, now a senior at Northeastern. “I just knew public service was in my character and decided that law school is the best way to do that effectively.”