Nigerian University education: what it should be VS what it is.
Growing up, studying was something to look forward to and going to the university was my every dream. What’s not to like about gaining knowledge, understanding new concepts and knowing when and how to apply them? I knew from a tender age that saving lives and helping people live healthier and better lives was the purpose of my creation, as such I was willing to work hard and burn a lot of midnight candles. Oh! I was going to be the very best, I was going to know everything there was to know and I was going to change the world. My vision and passion before entering through the gates of the university, very positive.
However, things looked better in my head than the reality that hit me on getting into the university. It was supposed to be about understanding, gaining knowledge and it was supposed to be enjoyed not endured but really, who cared for that? It dawned on me that who mattered most may very well be the “powers that be” and not so much the students.
The University has now become a regular, repeated and unavoidable cycle of “La cram, la pour” where reproducing answers at the level of your understanding may well be wrong or at best get you and average grade while reproducing it verbatimwill most likely make you the best among the best.
My earlier positivity and passion has definitely taken a beating, my every waking thought is how quickly the day can end even before it begins and how soon I can be out of the university. It feels as if I am permanently on autopilot, acting out whatever button gets pressed.
The inexhaustible syllabus, temporal time, sub-standard facilities, tedious schedules with last minute lectures and so many other unfavourable factors are the basis for phrases like “las las we go dey alright” “school na scam” “I cannot come and go and kill myself” amongst others.
And yet, a human is what I am, so I am expected to balance this academic pursuit with a social life, a spiritual life and every other life that be.
Finally, “La cram, La pour” is only half the phrase, the terminal half is “la pass, la forget” with la forget being the inevitable end.
If you have to recreate the Nigerian university system, what will it look like?