Liberian Immigrant Frank Mulbah Realizes Dream-Graduates from Cheyney University-Headed to Career in Law & Politics
May 10, 2014
KHA Scholar Frank Mulbah, a Liberian refugee and US citizen, stands with his mother following commencement. He fulfilled a lifetime dream by graduating cum laude from Cheyney University with a degree in political science.
Twenty-eight-year-old college senior, Frank Mulbah, realized one of his biggest dreams when he walked across the stage May 10 to accept his diploma, a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Cheyney University of Pennsylvania.
"I'm very, very happy," he proclaimed. "I feel very excited!"
The Liberian immigrant, now a US citizen, has come a mightly long way. He fled his homeland as a 5-year-old child while the West African nation was in the midst of civil war. He witnessed horrific atrocities and had to step over many dead bodies, including his aunt's corpse. He went on to live a life as a refugee, unable to afford the $50 to pay for a semester's worth of school. That's what he longed for the most--an education.
Eventually he and his mother made a hut to live in and he planted crops to sell in order to get enough money to pay for that education. He was 15 when he first stepped foot inside a classroom, taking 5th grade classes to start. His mother came to the U.S. first; it was another four years before the paperwork went through for him to join her.
Dr. Tara Kent, Dean of Cheyney University's Keystone Honors Academy (KHA), first learned of his incredible story when he applied for KHA membership in 2009.
"I was impressed with what Frank has overcome, and moved by his drive to pursue a college education, despite such tremendous hardship," she said.
The determined young man went on to earn his way into the KHA, Cheyney University's cornerstone program that provides scholarships for academically gifted students. That scholarship helped him graduate in four years.
"There are no words to describe how thankful I am for KHA," Mulbah says. "If I would have had to take out loans, I don't think I would have graduated in four years."
Besides KHA, the aspiring attorney was inducted into the Pi Sigma Alpha Latin Honor Society and the Pi Beta Delta International Honor Society. He joined other groups and did some political internships, including in PA State Senator Vincent Hughes' Harrisburg office and PA State Representative Margo Davidson's Upper Darby office, that have ignited a desire to go back to his homeland and make a difference.
"My dream is to go back home, run for office, and change the life of the people. I want to educate and teach people," he says, so that they will carry the same ideology and carry the legacy. The current Liberian leadership, he says, is not doing what the people need. "The politicians are not working for the people."
His mother, 53-year-Sarah Samuka, watched with great pride as her son accepted his long-awaited diploma, graduating cum laude. She, too, applauded the work of KHA and its Dean.
"Dr. Kent is one-of-a-kind," she said. "I just want to thank her and the Keystone family for the role they played in Frank's life. They have welcomed him with an open heart, open mind and an open door."
Frank Mulbah, Cheyney University Graduate, has been accepted into a pre-law program. He leaves CU undergraduates at his alma mater with this message; "Be humble and work hard!'
Read more about Frank Mulbah in this recent article which was published in the Philadelphia Inquirer -