Events, Choices And Consequences
By Akinfenwa Olaitan
We all can notice how much everyone has become engrossed in several activities these days. Of course, this is to be expected in an academic environment, particularly around the middle of the semester in a tasking and demanding institution like our own OAU. Indeed, academic activities and every other involvement we might have, coupled with the interesting yet perturbing events that generally keeps the OAU community in a state of worrisome, yet bubbling excitement, is not something new to most of us.
These past weeks, even till date, have been particularly eventful, considering a whole number of things; some of which are the fear of the widely-rumored security threat on campus and the overall questions about safety, the disturbing fracas and ultimate suspension of the Students' Union, and then the tragedies of loss of some students' lives, all of which flooded the headlines and several social media platforms. All of these events, coupled with the need to keep our academic goals afloat can, and should, serve as reminders of some realities that we as rational and intellectual individuals should always remember and reflect upon.
Firstly, we must always remember that we all won't be here forever. By 'here', I mean both this institution and also this world. Remembering that present events are mostly only subject to the time factor will influence the choices we make. If we as individuals, all in the name of being 'conscious' or 'politically vibrant' make bad choices, we will eventually have to bear the consequences. And in fact, it is then we realize how personal this game called life is. And as we know that sadly all men must die. Hopefully, later rather than sooner, it is very important that we leave a legacy that will speak well of us when we leave our present positions, or depart permanently.
Also, a lot of things, even beyond the classroom, contribute to shaping us to be the people we aim to become. Most of the knowledge we will require to make a headway, will not come to us at our crowded ODLT or HSLT classrooms while we strain to hear every sentence the lecturer says. Neither will we know them as we pore over the details in every material to pour out again during exams and make our A's or B's at the whims of our godlike examiners. No, we rather get molded by steps we take at personal development, at relationships we build, skills we acquire, consciously or unconsciously as we are hard-pressed by pressure and responsibilities. Beyond textbooks and materials, we should remember that other books at our fingertips, such as classic biographies, telling great lessons from great men and women enlighten us on lessons that we will need to compete favorably with the increasingly demanding world.
Interestingly, all the vital knowledge we gain beyond our classroom experiences are those things that serve to really educate us on things that should be the proofs of education. Financial knowledge, rules for leadership, and other human virtues cannot be taught by our lecturers; at least not sufficiently, since they are hardly the experts on those issues. Although most of our lecturers' names are not exactly the names of great men and women, inventors, and revolutionists in the pages of history, we'll still agree they are still great people in their own ways.
In a nutshell, I must conclude by saying that we should be wise in our decisions during periods of temporary unrest because crisis, just like tenures will always come and go. Also in our bid to make a name for ourselves, we should remember the things that will eventually matter when people speak of us. We should know finally, that whatever it is we are building, whether a fame in student politics, a strong GPA, or a good legacy or career, OAU remains a pathway to the future we intend to see. A future we shouldn't allow a journey of four or five years to adversely affect, but rather to positively influence.