BY KABS KANU :
AS Fourah Bay College, the one-time premier institution of learning, celebrates its 190th anniversary, some people are writing on Facebook that the alumni are only celebrating old and lost glory. They are saying that the college is irrelevant and its courses are irrelevant and its graduates not marketable. What a harsh assessment !
While some of what these people are saying is true, I totally disagree with their thesis that the college is irrelevant today and is producing graduates who are not marketable.
A degree or any qualification , for that matter, can be as useless as the paper on which it is written. It can, at the same time , be a pot of gold and a window of opportunity for somebody to use to soar in life. IT ALL DEPENDS ON WHAT YOU MAKE OF YOUR DEGREE, FELLAS.
YOUR OUTPUT is what matters in life; What you have inside you and how you utilize it is the deciding factor .
There are people who do not have degrees but they have done better in life than degree holders and have helped to make their communities or societies better than people with even PH. D degrees. It all depends on their output and how they decided to utilize what is inside them.
Fourah Bay College still has name recognition. The name Fourah Bay College still enthralls. It still generates pride. I am very proud to be an FBC graduate and I have never considered myself not marketable because thanks to Fourah Bay College, I have enjoyed gainful employment in three different countries. Thanks to FBC, I have never been without a job, even in the great United States of America. I have taught at the highest level of a college in a foreign country and even got a World Bank Project assignment as a Curriculum Specialist and as a teacher- trainer in a college.
I also know numerous college mates who have made a difference in life. They have helped to make the world a better place . In Liberia, Nigeria, Ghana, Cameroun, Zimbabwe, Uganda, Kenya, Sudan and the Gambia, our colleague FBC graduates have played leading roles in government, commerce, international organizations and what-have- you. Some have been ambassadors and ministers of government as well as professors in reputable universities. Some have even become heads of state .
Therefore, your degree depends on you. Your talents can make a place for you in the world, degree or no degree.
I agree with some of you that the quality of learning has declined and there are graduates today with fantastic degrees who cannot write a simple sentence right, express themselves well or initiate intellectual debates. But this problem is world-wide. Generally, die to the socio -economic and political collapse, standards have gone down dramatically in learning. But that does not mean that once-great African colleges like FBC, Legon, Makerere , Achimota etc should be disparaged. Yes, you are right to say they are living on old glory because standards have declined, regrettably , but as for the marketability of their graduates, it depends on the graduates themselves. If you are smart, you are smart. If you are a dumb and you are not doing anything about it, even a Harvard degree would not help you.
Let people be proud of their Alma mater, especially Fourah Bay College, which had been at the forefront of learning in West Africa for over 100 years and has graduates excelling themselves in varied professions all over the world.
Fourah Bay College was once great. But we can build it up back to its old greatness.