My 15 y/o brother animated a 1hr movie, and its theme made me tear up!
My brother Ugonna Obiagwu, (who just turned 15 today... HAPPY BIRTHDAY !!!!) is a Westland High School Freshman student, and a creative at heart! At his young age of 8, I remember him begging my parents to buy him the then popular handheld gaming system known as the Nintendo DSi. He animated cartoons on there and by the time he was 11, he started a youtube channel to express his creativity. By the way, S/O to YouTube for giving children the platform to express themselves! He has worked so hard and even recently shared with me how he just built his first app! (These kids are getting are getting ahead of the game EARLY now-a-days, I better step it up lol.) One of his youtube videos even has up to 20,000 views!!!! Yes, TWENTY THOUSAND. Peep the screenshot below!
Ugonna Obiagwu is the creator of the YouTube animatic-style cartoon channel called "OmegaUgo." OmegaUgo is a free-to-watch web-cartoon for all ages. Specifically, the web series show started in November of 2016 and has been growing ever since. He shares the stories and adventures of his character Ugo and his friends, as they explore several topics in society while expressing their take and experiences with them. These 4-6 mins on average episodes are based on real life experiences, stories, and opinions from each topic. He plans, writes, draws, and edits all the videos himself, and aims to release at least one episode every month.
Click to watch below!
How Ugonna's battle for support has not deterred his passion:
Doctors, engineers, and lawyers, are commonly the top careers that will earn the highest praise in their eyes. "Study your mathematics, read your books” is what we continuously heard growing up and I thank my parents for pushing us to be academically diligent. With such strong focus on academics, it hasn't been easy encouraging my parents to let me start my own Fashion business, ByOgochukwu, at age 12, or for my brother to start his own Youtube channel, OmegaUgo, at age 11. Nonetheless all my siblings, especially my little brother Ugonna, has continuously displayed his resilience, perseverance, tenacity, and overall GRIT, in his work; and little by little he has shared his passions with my parents to make them aware and proud of his hard work! With African parents, who struggled their way to America for opportunity, they do not quite see anything other than education and traditional schooling as the GUARANTEED pathway to success. I can understand that.
His latest episode I watched just last night brought me to tears! As I watched the movie, it reminded me of what Akosua Boadi-Agyemang said in her “Re-Envision Africa” LinkedIn article. The very first OmegaUgo 1 hour movie special is about how "Sylvia, Ugonna's cousin, invites him to Nigeria and the group follows him to Nigeria where they learn about the country's culture, people, and someone yearning for revolution."
Why the theme of the movie moved me:
I remember being around his age and struggling to accept my cultural identity. I myself, was ultimately influenced to create ByOgochukwu, a startup expressing my cultural pride and helps bridge the gap of underrepresented minorities in the fashion industry. To see him grasping onto who he his, finding value in where he came from, and taking pride in it all makes me so incredibly happy! Despite working tirelessly to improve his creative ability, Ugonna has still managed to achieve one of the highest academic honors at Westland High School: The 2018 Top 25/WISE Awards. He received this merit based award based on his current 4.14 GPA status, and a 4 out of nearly 500 student class rank, achieved in his Freshman year alone! Not only that, he is also a dual-enrollment student, earning college credit, again as a high school FRESHMAN.
Please, checkout Ugonna's YouTube channel and website if you get a chance. I have linked his most recent work "Culture Shocked" the first ever OmegaUgo Movie! I know people are busy, so if you don’t have the time to watch the 1 hour special, feel free to watch some of his other work, just around 5 mins long. The youth of today are so eager, creative, and growing up in a world where they can google any new set of skills; learn it, practice it, and work to perfect it. It is incredibly important to help guide them along the way, instead of dismissing their work and interests as "a phase, a distraction from school,"or anything of that sort. There are many bright minds out there who just need people to support and uplift their already established "go-getter" spirit! After all, the youth is our future.
Please, feel free to share any feedback you may have for my brother, good or bad, because I know he truly will appreciate it! Thank you in advance.