By Kelechukwu Iruoma
STAKEHOLDERS have said that the lack of admission space and quality research work in Nigerian universities have been the major reasons parents choose foreign institutions for their wards. In her submission, Mr Rose Omonobi, of Nubi Education and services limited pointed out that the 1.7m registered JAMB candidates struggling for 850,000 admission spaces in Nigerian tertiary institutions was a food for thought.
Speaking at an Education Fair in Lagos, Omonobi said: ‘’We do not have enough universities to absorb our students. Many people who pass out from the secondary schools every year have problems gaining admission through JAMB. ‘’It is not that our students are not intelligent or they could not pass the examination, it is because the system is bad. Not that I find it interesting sending people abroad to study. We have to make Nigeria worthwhile for our students.”
She added that if our graduates will compete favourably globally, the government has to sit up to do something about our universities, adding that our universities are being run like secondary schools. ‘’The facilities are poor and the lecturers are not well paid and they turned the students to Automated Teller Machine, ATM, selling handouts and other things,” she said.
She insisted that the government has to devout more funds on research in various universities, adding, ‘’that is why it is a university.”She explained that some of the big universities abroad prefer to take people from federal universities, saying that university is not just a classroom thing, it has a lot to do with research. On getting admission abroad, the consultant said nothing has changed, stressing that the only thing that has changed is that it is becoming difficult for people to afford oversee studies due to the exchange rates and different policies.
Meanwhile, Ayomikun Akinwumi, a graduate of Medical Laboratory Science from the University of Lagos, who is seeking admission to study Medical Microbiology in one of the foreign universities said: ‘’It is more convenient studying abroad. I studied in Nigeria and I know how you will have to chase the lecturers up and down. When you go for lectures, there will not be light, lecturers will not come for lectures. ‘’There is also no fairness in grading students. Even though you do well, some lecturers will just want to punish you. What you were not taught is what you see during examination. The lecturers abroad are willing to talk to you but here in Nigeria, you look for lecturers anyhow.
”When you compare what the lecturers teach oversees and what ours do here, you will find out that it is copy and paste that many of our lecturers do. There are some of our lecturers that need to be retired but because of politics, they are still in the academic system teaching. We are just lucky that we have better parents who are ready to send us out to get a better education. I planned to study public health.”
For Funmilayo, who had her First Degree at Madonna University said: ‘’Foreign universities have more facilities to improve my education in Masters level. ‘’I had my first degree here and doing my masters will open my eyes more. I will be able to make use of what they do not have here in Nigeria and then come back after my masters to offer my services.
‘’We do not have the opportunity to work here after graduation unlike oversees. That is what Nigeria lacks. Over there, you can work and be able to cope with your education.
‘’The quality education is missing as far as Nigeria educational system is concerned. It is what people are yearning for. That is why parents who can afford it are sending their children to school.
Another is the number of years spent in school. In Nigeria, when you are offered admission, you are not quite sure how long you will spend in the school. There is strike everywhere. The four years will have an additional one or two years.
If I get a degree anywhere abroad, the company in Nigeria will employ me not as a Nigerian but as an expatriate.”