“Academics is making something simple, and transforming it into something difficult”
I was so excited the very first time I was going to the university, I remember my older sister, walking up to me in my room and pleading with me “ Tolu, please change your mind, don’t go for this course, people don’t ever graduate with good grades in this department” I laughed and told her, “ Babe, forget I know what I’m doing” I actually knew what I was doing, I mean the course sounded so cool and I couldn’t wait to be a certified “scientist” I waved off her assertion as just “fear of the unknown”, well I should’ve been scared. After my first year in the university, I can assure you that my pride was so badly beaten that I couldn’t even raise my shoulders, it had dawned on me that my sister had been right and I have been thrust into the worst possible situation anyone can ever be, I was subject to the wrath of “academics”. The thing about studying in Nigeria is that the education industry doesn’t trade in knowledge, they trade instead in flesh and pride, for every level you move, a part of you is dropped, just almost recently the “BBC Eye” published a video showing the prevalent cases of sexual harassment in Nigerian tertiary institutions, well like it was tagged “Sex for Grades” it really was a trade. There are numerous stories and scars of how Nigerian student has been able to survive in higher Institutions a number of them living with the PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) that comes afterwards. If you think its sad then try to listen to the next story, “ I can't find your results, student” this was the exact words a friend narrated to me about her experience in school, she was told by her departmental secretary that her result couldn’t be found, if you’re shocked and wondering how in the 21st century results still go missing don’t bother probing your mind too much, its possible in Nigeria especially when the lecturer feels you’re either too smart for him or he simply doesn’t just like your face. The horrors of studying in Nigeria won't hit you yet until you move ahead and study in saner climes, and then you realise that the “genius” professor who played god with your academics wasn’t even all that smart, and then you wonder how and when we lost it. I would give you a brief run down and trust me, I won’t be kind. Our value system is broken, because we pay much attention to appearance rather than quality, a Nigerian wants to acquire all the necessary certificates with high flying grades but doesn’t want to put In the exact work equivalent, they simply need those certificates to stunt and trample on their peers that they’re better, the major reason why a lot of people are in academics today isn’t born out of the passion of imparting knowledge instead it’s a passion created by economic means and influence. The only major reason why an average Nigerian would pursue a post-graduate degree is simply that they believe it’d give them an edge over their peers in the job market. So, such a person simply lacks the empathy to impart knowledge, but instead finds himself/herself in a place they have zero intention to be, how do you feel they’d behave? Well, your guess is as good as mine, badly. The attitude that most lecturers give towards their students is that of prejudice, they don’t need a reason to make you frustrated and depressed they do it because that’s the only way they can only exert their anger and frustrations over an unfair job market. Therefore, we continue breeding new sets of psychopathic lecturers who simply believe it must be difficult for you to cherish and do not be amazed, a lot of this so-called lecturers also schooled abroad, so they know the right things to do and trust me the society always win in the end. A lot of young Nigerian graduates hold the scars from such traumatic experiences from these “Psychopathic lecturers”, a lot who weren’t so fortunate caved into their fears and killed themselves, such tragedy, I continually ask myself, why should education be made difficult? A friend once asked me why is everything supposedly difficult in Nigeria but the moment you step out of the country everything just falls into their respective places with ease. But then I couldn’t answer because it was true and there isn’t actually any answer that I may give that wouldn’t make me sound like a hypocrite. The fake intellectuals impart the fake kind of knowledge to a crop of students and as a result, the fake-knowledge chain is created, we’ve placed so much relevance on certifications and grades and placed little relevance on actual intelligence. Zero wonder why even with all the most brilliant professors and outstanding breaks we have simply not been able to establish and end to our societal woes, no inventions or innovations. We still wait for accreditation from the white man, then you may simply begin to ask yourself where has all the research they claimed to be doing gone? Well, they’ve simply gone into the bellies of your professors. We can't simply move as a country or a continent if we keep fuelling fake intelligence, the educational system needs to be revolutionised to accommodate actual valued intelligence, some countries have begun implementing the “No-grades” policy, we can actually implement that, to curb “Academic Fraud” in Nigeria, emphasis should be shifted from exams, we actually write too much “exams”, students shouldn’t be scared to speak their mind or pursue their talents, proper guidance and counselling departments should be established in institutions and should remain effective. Our obsession with this false-intelligence and Knowledge is what had led us to this state that we are in. The bottom line is that education is fast becoming extinct in Nigeria, kids are beginning to see reasons why they don’t need to go to school and its even worse for those in sciences and thanks to the IT industry, a lot of youths have been wooed. Lecturers should understand that if a high percentage of your students fail to pass a course, you’ve also failed and it's not their fault. If you lack the passion for imparting knowledge stay away from academics. For those who are in the business of frustrating students because they’ve got the powers now, well I can only hope for posterity to judge sooner. “Education isn’t supposed to be difficult” acquiring knowledge isn’t a sin, so stop making people feel stupid, be objective with your criticisms and stop being proud of high failure rates among your students it's disgusting. Lastly, parents do not judge your kids by the paper in their hands, judge them by their attitude and empathy. I would end my rants by sharing a poem I wrote months ago I tagged it “The Students Revolution”.
In the classrooms, where minds are grown.
It turns out minds were trained to kill,
Criticisms they called it
But antagonist I called them
The big-haired, large beard professors
Speak with a large grin
While they kill minds
And destroy curiosity
Armed with a pen, they stroke
Destinies of students buried
So, who is to blame I ask?
“The students” the professors, answered.
P.S: THIS RANT REMAINS A PERSONAL OPINION OF THE AUTHOR AND ALL STORIES ARE BASED ON “HEAR SAYS”