There are two categories of newly admitted students in Nigerian Institutions, the ones who are bent on coming out with the best grades and the ones who want to have the time of their lives as the sniff of freedom from their parents’ grip is intoxicating.
People begin to work towards whatever path they have decided to ply, becoming frequent visitors of the library, front row occupiers, scholars in higher classes friends or back benchers, party goers and even organizers, rolling with influential guys and girls on campus etc.
Whether one belongs to the first or second category or in between, the ultimate goal is for everyone to be done with school, get a great job, earn a lot of money, flex, marry and most importantly be very wealthy.
But reality begins to unfold as some of the students chasing excellent grades somehow find themselves dropping despite the hard work they put into their academics, their efforts do not equate their grades anymore, the semester they put in their best effort turns out to be the one with the worst grade and the one with less effort surprisingly has one of their best grades. It now gets confusing and everyone is wondering why everyone who studies is not at the top of the class, people begin to lose the vibe and start to lose interest in school and gain more interest in the life after school “Does my grade equate my success?” “Am I even really interested in this course?” “What do I want to do with my life?”
Now there is a rage for success, which goes even beyond academic success. Some even completely neglect academic success and chase for success beyond the academics.
This is not to conclude that everyone turns in this direction, this is just to say that the categories begin to increase as one approaches graduation.
Now we have students who are still chasing grades, students who just want to have fun because education has failed them, people who have started to think beyond academic success, want to realize their passion and work for success, students who won’t give up on education but still want to develop the skills in line with their passion, the ones who won’t give up on education and also won’t give up on fun because education just might be the key to their success but they cannot “come-and-go-and-die-and-kill-themselves away”.
But, guess what happens in final year? Somehow people begin to see the gross rate of unemployment despite the huge amount of graduates.
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Students start to see some first class students who are still searching for jobs, students start to hear how much employers don’t always care about your grades but your experience and skills. Skills? Experience? “I am a fresh graduate of Microbiology because I was dumped there for not reaching the cut off mark of my desired course, but I want to be a filmmaker, where will I get the experience from?”, “ I had a first class in accounting but some of what my employers want still sound like gibberish to me!”
How can we then get it right? Say hello to THE STUDENTPRENEURS. This category of students who already had their CV, no matter how amateur, in their first or second year of school.
This category of students have started thinking of societal issues they will like to solve and where their passion lies. Some start businesses while on campus, some take up part time jobs to build their skills and experience. They won’t wait till after school, they want to start to chase their passion now.
It sounds all rosy and nice until you hear how much they need to do to effectively double task, as dealing with education and your business or chasing your passion is no small task. “Yrnvydynrddndy” this is how their minds read most of the time as they try to juggle their passion or business and school work.
We will be taking sometime to delve into their world. Please get on this “Bugatti” (with a fake American accent, lol) and let’s start the ride.
By Praise Ifetogun
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