What’s in a name?

Well writing posts and not posting them till weeks after is annoying. Here is another hoarded post. I might just create a category called “the hoarded notes”. I’m hilarious, I know.

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The completion of yet another essay has my room in disarray. I try my best to be neat, almost bordering on OCD tendencies but when the essay calls, all that goes to the dogs. This time, we had to discuss China’s rise and its tendency to become a world power. It sucked. You see, I am not one for academic deductions and pretense and it annoys me to no end when we have to write or read anything academically inclined. This is not because I do not know how to go about this, but because I would rather write a story or a song. Or watch Game of Thrones.

I know, you wander why I bother with school? Well first, Dad would have a self inflicted aneurysm if he heard I didn’t want to get a PHD (Which I won’t bother with of course!). Second, it looks good on paper. Third, I grudgingly admit that I need the extra knowledge to talk smart, advance in my profession and get better opportunities. That, people is why I bother.

Anyway, I decided to clean and mum called. She asked what I was doing and I explained the just completed macho task. She laughed and said “Finally, you are going to school. Not that nonsense you guys do here in Nigeria”. I laughed it off but after the call, I had a long “thought fest”

It had come to mind that Nigeria’s educational system was bad, but it never hit this hard till I started classes here. I reminisced on when I went to the N.Y.S.C camp and met people who could not write their names. I had to spell O-G-E-C-H-I (Ogechi) to a certain girl, a 27 year old graduate of something I do not care to remember.

I am not certain of the genesis of her problem and I do not wish to play the blame game. My mum was a journalist and I certainly could not have gotten away with not being able to spell. I was also privileged to attend “good” schools, away from all the ruckus associated with the institutions infamously known for the turnout of such graduates. In the spirit of essay writing, I have highlighted what i term the “The abyss of blame: A brief highlight of the onus conundrum”. For your reading pleasure, I highlight four sections of the society who play the blame game for the educational cesspool Nigeria finds itself in. 

A. The society: The government is blamed for not properly paying lecturers in universities thereby prompting the collection of bribes for exams. This of course ensures students do not care to attend classes and can get away with plagiarized or no work .

B. Parents/wards: They blame their wards for the pursuit of money and lack of interest in education. They roll their eyes and talk about the good old days. Many of them cannot engage in pedagogical or even logical arguements if you care to investigate

C. Youths: We think the blame falls back to the society for according respect to degrees and looking down on vocational/creative prowess and the blue collared profession. Crappy degree clutching students who would put IKEA to shame if allowed to maximize their skills are thereby churned out.

D. The elitist academia and Nigerian Intellectuals: These group look down on the National institutions. They accuse these institutions of not running checks on the teaching practices and academic qualifications. Very few of these people go back to teach. They sit on high horses overseas and in government offices making statements. In their defense, the universities could solicit that these individuals come in to help, but I am not certain if this obviously expensive option is considered seeing as the lecturers on ground are not even getting enough pay.

My deep seated disgust is not limited to public universities but also the so called private universities with their lacquered veneer of poise and perfection. The students could spell their names of course, but ask for a logical academic paper and you would see the dirt. It looks somewhat like mud and loam mixed, a fired mixture made to look like a work of art. I myself am guilty of that and have only started learning my lesson – literally. I could go and on and the blame would move in a circular motion and come back. No one cares to take responsibility, and a lot of the students do not care to help themselves either. It does not matter that each year, the education allocation goes up or that the lecturers are paid a wee bit more, the rot has already set in

I propound no perfect solutions as I have none spectacular. I just wish the primary schools could be made better and parents could inculcate FORCE the reading culture on their kids. At least, that’s how I manageably write a somewhat coherent term paper, stringing all the big words I know together and hoping it makes sense when i read it tomorrow.

DISCLAIMER: My views are not representative of and do not express the views of any organization or country. I do not write to judge but merely air my views. I would like to stress the point that Nigeria is an awesome place filled with awesome people. Only we are allowed to talk bad of ourselves. Its how we show love.

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