University drop-outs, drop-ins and drive-by schoolings

Wilson Orhiunu

First Gentleman with Wilson Orhiunu

Email: Twitter: @Babawilly

Nigerians love to see letters before and after their names. The problem is that letters come from Universities and study is both time consuming and mentally tasking. Why read when you can Azonto? Pepper souping, point and killing, shacking Gulder and watching Barcelona FC are much more relaxing in the tropical heat abi? Give lazy and creative people a task and consider it done. Viola we have invented the solutions namely a. Drive by schooling (Honorary certificates from bitter leaf league colleges) b. Creative CV writing AKA lying. C. Exaggeration (you drove past the gates of Unilag and a Doctorate in Philosophy flew into the back seat with your name written on it AKA your miracle will locate you). D. Grab your copy! Just e-mail a bogus university online, pay the fee and grab your Doctorate AKA if you cannot make it, fake it). All the above are examples of University drop-ins. Gate crashers to the party of the intellectually gifted.

Reading old Nigerian newspapers can be an eye opener. In the 1970s almost everyone was a Mr or Mrs apart from the clergy and members of the armed forces. In today’s print media everyone has a title. Dr Gala, Prof Gala, Ambassador Gala, Otunba Gala, Chief Gala, Engineer Gala, Mechanic Gala, Rev Gala, Street Beggar Gala, First Lady Gala, and then you get the crazy combos- Prof, Engineer, Snorer, Millionaire, Otunba, Double Chief, BMW owner, Senator, Aspiring Billionaire Gala. Fitting names and titles onto business cards has become an art form. My friends tell me of a time they sat pepper souping at a bar and one of them was bitten by a mosquito. The victim slapped hard at his forearm but missed. He looked sad about this for he felt cheated of his precious blood. “That stupid mosquito escaped,” he lamented. My friends all swear that the mosquito on hearing the insult flew back and began to shout at the victim thus, “I no blame you. Na me suck your nonsense blood nau. See your dirty mouth. Do you know who I am? Never you call me mosquito in your life again. I am Elder Mosquito Esquire. Next time address me correctly. Nonsense!”

Dropping out is made somewhat acceptable in the eyes of some when they consider the men of substance who dropped out of Universities and went on to make a name for themselves. They name Bill Gates (Harvard dropout and Microsoft founder), Mark Zuckerberg (Harvard dropout and Facebook founder), Jan Koum (San Jose University dropout and WhatsApp Co-founder), Steve Jobs (Reed College dropout and Apple Co-founder) and Larry Ellison (Double chief o! University of Illinois dropout and then later a Chicago University dropout. CEO of Oracle Corporation). However, these are clever people who knew more than their teachers. Unfortunately, Olodos (dunces) who presume rather erroneously that they know more than their teachers and parents are opting to drop out of education. Hunger will teach them a lesson they will permanently remember!

The above listed five are what can be called the modern day founding fathers of successful drop-outism. Bill Gates worked on his school’s computers from the eighth grade (1968) and was exempted from Math classes to give him more time. He worked many long hours on codes. By the time Bill Gates dropped out of Harvard he had been programming nonstop for seven consecutive years.

Mark Zuckerberg worked hard on his dream of setting up Facebook. He also dropped out of Harvard to do his own mission. He worked much harder and longer than any student would and it all paid off.

Jan Koum left University when he no longer could combine it with working for Yahoo as an infrastructural engineer. He left Yahoo and later worked extremely hard to make a success of WhatsApp.

Steve Jobs dropped out of Reed College due to a lack of funds. He stayed back however to attend lectures while sleeping on the floors of fellow students (squatting in Uniben parlance). He kept on working hard and never stopped.

Larry Ellison dropped out of the University of Illinois due to a family bereavement. He subsequently got a job and put in the hard graft required.

Now back to Naija. We also have founding fathers and mothers of University drop–inism and drive by scholarism. Bogus, cash for honorary , Creative, Meaningless Chieftaincy, and religious e.g. Chief Usher Gala or Male Tenor Gala etc. etc. But no bi my mouth you go hear say Oba no brush im teeth. Please do ya own research and find out as I no wan enta gbege for free. To put you in the right direction study politicians and some lecturers. There are rumours that as their wives pile up enormous make up on their faces to the point of ojuju-fication, the politicians also Mary Kay up their CVs to make them look like US Senators. The problem is when these people are exposed to have fake certificates that actually match their fake hair, fake accents, fake completion and fake integrity, nothing is done. They have no shame and the electorate has no memory as election season cash induces amnesia in Naija.

So in summary, if you are a special talent, with opportunities to fulfil your dream and are willing to work fifteen hour days for five years straight, you can drop out. However, if you love to Azonto once in a while and are not willing to put in too much hard work, please stay in school. Do not leave because you are bored. I promise you, an empty stomach is much more boring. Dats all