From Prisoner to Doctor, lecturer reveals how he bagged doctorate degree in jail

A lecturer Stephen Akpabio-Klementowski has revealed that he is an ex-convict that went to jail without any qualification, but managed to beat all odds and studied to bag doctorate degree.

In a documentary that was posted on Twitter by BBCideas, the university lecturer tells the inspiring story of how he transformed his life through education.

According to him, growing up was hard as he lost his father when he was still a teenager.

As a young boy he chose the wrong path by venturing into drug-dealing.

He was sentenced to 16 years in prison for the crime. However, by the time he left prison, he had completed his first degree and two further degrees, including a doctorate.


Akpabio shared the challenges he faced in a bid to turn his life around. For example, he left school with no qualifications. But his determination and love for learning kept him going.

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He said other prisoners and guards felt that he was wasting his time and that studying won’t matter with his criminal record.

The lecturer did not allow other peoples opinion to stop him from achieving his goals.

Stephen Akpabio-Klementowski is now a Lecturer of Criminology at the Open University, he works with students in prisons and tells them they too can turn their lives around.

“The word “prisoner” is just a label. I found my freedom within my own mind,” he said.

He believes that “everyone has the potential and power to change” and that freedom comes from the mind.

Watch the video below;