Seydel, international student

This migrant story is included in Dia, Chapter 22 of the volume

Seydel was born in the Senegal River Middle Valley in 1985 to parents who were earning a sporadic living from agriculture. He attended classes there until his final year of secondary school. In 2007, a baccalauréat in hand, he was oriented towards law school, where he obtained a master’s degree in 2012. From 2012 to 2014, he looked for an internship and sat several competitive exams, to no avail, despite having good academic transcripts. A former classmate who had settled in Nice, France suggested that he try to register at a French university. Seydel arrived in France in 2016 to do a master’s, found work as a legal adviser and married a Senegalese woman who had also come to France to study – she had studied marketing and was working for a large corporation. Seydel looks on the change in his life as follows:

"It was my friend’s idea that saved me. In Senegal, it’s very difficult, unless you have a networks, skills don’t count. I knocked on every door in Dakar. I didn’t give up. Now I’m happy. I’m earning a living and I’m helping my family back in the village. I’m also helping my younger brother, who’s at university. I hope to help him come here as well, because I don’t believe in the emerging Senegal. They may be emerging, but not people like us."


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