#Blogfest 2:0, Day 15 – #30dayscountdownto2016
According to Oxford Dictionary, certificate is an official document attesting or recording a particular fact or event, a level of achievement, the fulfillment of a legal requirement, etc.
You noticed I bold some words from that definition, the word, official document attesting a particular event? A certificate is supposed to attest that you have a particular knowledge about something, subject, skills, and level of achievement. A certificate is not important than the knowledge. It is supposed to certify, prove, state, that you have the knowledge.
We have a different definition of certificate in Nigeria. Certificate is a valuable piece of paper, which shows I have qualified for a certain skill, it is something important that I can state in my Curriculum Vitae (CV) as the locals call it. It is something I can show to higher authority to get a promotion, get a raise in salary, doesn’t matter if I can defend it. This is one of the reasons we have half baked graduates in Nigeria. Most graduates just pass through school with the mindset of having a beautiful certificate and no knowledge about their field. Oh, dear employer, tell me you won’t love to have a first class student in your establishment. We cherish what the certificate reads in Nigeria and not what the bearer of the certificate can offer. I remembered when we were in orientation camp and there was this skills acquisition program. Every corp member was supposed to choose a preferred skill. There was Tie and Dye, Baking section, information and communication technology and so on. We were taught different things but it was for a short period of two hours within five days. We were expected to continue the training after orientation camp. To my surprise, one of my friends showed me a certificate at the end of the program and told me he paid five thousand for the certificate. He was in soap making section. I wondered why he needed to buy a certificate for five thousand just to be a certified soap maker. Let me repeat the question “Why do you need a certificate for learning how to make soap”. It shows how crazy we are about certificate. Does he need the certificate to establish a soap company or he wants to add that to his CV. I will ask him the next time I see him because I could not ask him when we were in camp due to shock.
Until we start appreciating knowledge acquired more than certificate, this country will remain a consuming country. We will continue to be a third world country, we won’t develop. Steve Jobs don’t even have a certificate, and he left a legacy behind, Sunny Ade doesn’t have a certificate in music and he has two Grammy nominations. Awolowo don’t have a certificate in politics and he did great things politically. Kanye west, Jay z, Beyonce, etc don’t have certificate in music and they have more than fifteen grammies. Certificate is supposed to show you have knowledge about something and not just something you value more than the knowledge.
Written by Oluwatosin who blogs at tomisinblogs.wordpress.com
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