With the recent upsurge in the number of unemployed graduates, one wouldn’t fail to wonder, “if indeed education secures you an automatic job, why then are these capable graduates still unemployed”. Recently, I was having an interaction with a friend, and a topic about a former vice president of this country was brought up. This friend of mine quickly pointed out that this man in question lacks a degree(i dont know how true this is) but i still managed to voice out my opinion about the man saying, even though as you said this man is without a degree, he is making an impact that even those with Phd aren’t making in the country.
What i think about the reason why we have so many unemployed graduates is because of the system. We have a system which i am sorry to say is not working effectively. In other countries, a child who wants to become an engineer from childhood is being groomed like one. Unlike in my country where students are made to go through various educational processes to emerge finally as candidates sitting for SSCE examinations. Some candidates also fall victims of lack of enough guidance, they are being left alone to try their strengths where even them in their hearts know they cant cope. When they end up getting whatever course the university admission system decides to offer them, they fail to perform, and the blame will lie ultimately on the fact that they were denied admission to study their desired Courses. This leads most students to settle for scores which they ordinarily will surpass if they put their minds to work.
Also, i happened to have a very interesting conversation with a brother who pointed out to me that a particular kannywood star is also without a degree. He supported his argument by saying that going back to school and acquiring a degree will make him to be more respected by people. I told him really, how about Bill gates, how about mark zuckerberg who is making waves and only recently got an honorary doctorate from Harvard university, a college from where he had dropped out. They both are focussed on bringing forth value to the people and also do not degrade education whdreas they support it very much. Do we say their lack of a degree certificate has deprived them of success. We can only even say that it has made them shot up and didnt rely on their degree to provide them with a job. A thing our Nigerian graduates are very good at.
Another thing i noticed is that despite the so much importance we attach to education in this country, our very able, connected and highly influential businessmen do not create a content for the intellectual community, however, the elite derive the most benefit from them. What i mean is that i noticed our foreign businessmen are people who not only create goods and services for the elite, but they share their experiences in business with the reading public, thereby indirectly changing the psyche of those capable young men and women to stop waiting on their degree to put food on their table and go out and create value to people to get the job they want.
After all the forgone sayings about the overemphasize of education, they ray, listing problems without solutions is another problem in itself. So, i would like to utilize the remaining part of my essay to proffer solution to the problems aforementioned.
I think This country is going to move forward if we realize that the education system we have is not working effectively and needs adjustments. Stakeholders need to sit and decide if nursery education should be phased out completely or be reduced from 3years in some places fo a maximum of 1year. I believe nursery education is the bane of the problem as many children will be going to school thinking their only ability at that point is counting numbers from 1-50 and alphabets from A-Z . This does a lot of harm to their psychology.
About the wrong choices our SSCE candidates make, there should be guidance and counseling officers at that point who will advice the students based on their strengths on what course to study in the university not let ang student just go ahead and apply for admission into medicine and surgery only to end up losing to a course one never plan on ever studying.
About the attitude of our businessmen towards writing, i think a lot also needs to be done. Our businessmen need to write much so that the upcoming generation can get something as a guide to read to develop themselves both intellectually and business minded. What Tony Elumelu is doing is very much commendable.
Conclusively, education is important but the degree certificate is not everything, so the sooner everyone stop looking to his degree on what it can do for him and start looking for innovative ways through which he can add value to the society, the better for all of us.
Tell us what you think in the comment box.