LESSONS FROM THE UNIVERSITY – PART TWO

I am not trying to take the path of that Kyeiwaa movie with its 13 parts or Shirley Frimpong-Manso’s Adam’s Apple. Maybe I might outpace them  by bringing you thirty chapters of university lessons.  This is just part two of it. Please do not miss the substance by jumping the part one.  This is a continuation of my lessons.  Enjoy every bit of it.

  1. WE LIVE IN A MAN’S WORLD RULED BY WOMEN.  I read about ‘women and politics’ in my final year Political Science class.  I did some works on male chauvinism in my Literature class.  However I have come to realize that despite the fact that it is the men who hold the gun and press the trigger, it is the women who know and decide what kind of bullet is put in that gun.  Most at times, you hear ladies complain that it is a man’s world.  My cursory tour down memory lane shows otherwise.   Most important and destiny changing decisions that are implemented have some kind of woman power influencing it.   I recall certain decisions I had to take that affected the whole university indirectly and affected an all male hall.  Little did those gallant men know that the decision was influenced by a fervent appeal of a sweet feminine voice.  It however proved to be the best decision at the time.  I remember a gentleman who used cute ladies as a campaign tool to become SRC president.  He mistakenly allowed one beloved of his to also call the shots throughout his administration and the results were very disastrous. Women indeed rule the world of men.
  2. LAWS ARE LIKE IRON RODS.  Laws are everywhere.  The university is worse with all kinds of rules, regulations, constitutions and other legal documents.  Woe unto you if you go against anyone of them.  As someone who has the tendency to be very mischievous, I had to make sure I never find myself in the claws of any law.  I remember my Dean of students always pumping it in my head that the most powerful people are those who are able to operate within the confines of the law.  In my quest to do what I wanted to do without necessarily breaking the laws, I picked something from the character of an iron rod.  When you bend it for a purpose, you can always straighten it back.  When you break it however, it is very difficult to get it back to its normal form.  I learnt how to bend rules in very difficult circumstances and straighten them back without breaking them.   Bend the rules when the need arises but never break them.
  3. NEVER DESPISE SMALL RESPONSIBILITIES.  The most non-relevant duty I was given in my first year in school was the beginning of whatever I achieved in school.  When that young gentleman who was aspiring to be the President of the Students association of our faculty,  ordered me to write down the names of those present at a campaign team meeting, little did I know where it will lead me.  That first duty later earned me the position of campaign Secretary.  It later landed me a position as the deputy editor of the largest faculty on campus, when I had barely spent two years in school.  When I was killing myself on this job whilst others relaxed,  I kept asking myself why I was doing that.  My contributions were recognized and soon I was carving a niche for myself as one of the best writers and editors on campus.  Looking at my background, it was a bit amazing.  A young lad bred in Kumasi where  English language was supposedly a problem, attending Opoku Ware School, noted for their academic prowess and their gross dislike for the speaking of the English Language; this accolade was quite amazing.  Still living by the motto of my beloved Hall of residence, REST NOT, I worked harder and in the next administration of my faculty I was made the Editor-in-chief.   Some part of me told me I deserved more than that.  I was going to work under someone who knew close to nothing about this work.  It paid off more than I thought.  This small position sent me to three places that most renowned media workers in Ghana always dream to be.  I had the privilege of spending time in the office and residence of former President Rawlings.  That same day  I had another privilege of been ushered into the residence of former President Kuffour.  The best moment came when I entered the Osu Castle and went straight to the office of the president.  Though I did not meet him in person, I had an audience with the ECOWAS president, Ambassador Victor Gbeho.  The fun part of my time at the castle was when a policeman was caught off guard and I mistakenly took the red-carpeted staircase reserved only for the President of the nation, not even the Vice president walks on that.  So you see, from a common name writer of a campaign team, I ended up enjoying presidential privilege.  University has taught me to look at any small duty as my most expensive treasure.
  4. THE VOICE OF THE PEOPLE IS NEVER THE VOICE OF GOD.  One statement that has always kept me thinking is the saying that ‘the voice of the people is the voice of God’.  I follow both scripture and world history and I realized it is not so.  I learnt that the voices of the people most times are the voices of men, not God.  I have learnt that the majority normally gets it wrong.  During my time as a student politician, it was the minority views that proved to be the voice of God.  The majority say virginity is not dignity, but only lack of opportunity.  The minority voice of a close friend told me otherwise.  I stuck to her advice and her voice proved to be godly. When you follow the crowd, you might die in a stampede.  Stand out and you will be outstanding.  That was a priceless lesson I picked from the university.
  5. THE FEAR OF GOD IS THE BEGINNING OF WISDOM.  I started hearing this when I was in kindergarten in a village which cannot be found on the map of Ghana.  My senior high school decided to put it in Latin, ‘DEUS LUX SCIENTAE’.  That got me confused the more.  Four years in the university threw more light on that saying and made me a beneficiary of that.  Up till now, people think I am a coward because I do not do certain things.  It is amazing how I am still a teetotaler after living among alcohol barons for years.  It is amazing how I chose not to be a playboy when I have all the avenues to be a dangerous one.  I run away from little foxes of evil which will not have caused me anything.  In the end, I realized God blessed me so much because of these little deeds HIS grace enabled me to do.  Some people ask me how I am able to maintain some academic standing despite my almost non-serious attitude towards academic work.   People perceive me as perhaps very lucky.  I do not call it luck.  It is one lesson I learnt from the university that has made me so.  I can stand with my Lecturer and argue toe and nail, but when I meet my Church president who was an age-mate, I mellow.  This was due to the understanding I finally had of that saying ‘THE FEAR OF GOD IS THE BEGINNING OF WISDOM’.  That is even an understatement.

It might look like I am blowing my own trumpet.  However, I don’t even have the energy to blow a trumpet.  Life experiences are worth sharing and he who shares, cares.   The University is a wonderful place to be, at least once in a person’s lifetime.  I choose to call it an academic pilgrimage.   On my first pilgrimage, these are the rubies, the gold, the diamonds and the species I brought back.  One day soon, I will go back and bring larger quantities of these and many more.

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13 thoughts on “LESSONS FROM THE UNIVERSITY – PART TWO”

  1. Great Post Courage! I especially like the section about not despising small responsibilities. This speaks so much to me. I was brought up to always aim for the GREAT.what i failed to realize is that I cant get to 10 without starting at 1. All my life,I have dispised mediocre things.
    Recently, I was offered a position in his company that ihave been with for a little over a year,nothing glamorous but with a lot more responsibilities and just a raise of 50 centsn in my wages. My answer to my manager was a big NO. why? Because like always, I thought it is so mediocre a responsibility and that I could do better.Reading this post now has taught me never to ignore the small things in life. I wish I had had the opportunity to read thisbefore I turned down the position.Oh wall..no good crying over spilled milk. I will be wiser next time. Again,great post,Quarsh!
    DBBLAY

  2. Courage, Courage, Courage…You know those days when you hear or read something and after you just want to sit there and do nothing else?…Just sit there and savor the moment?…I’m having one of those now…

  3. small beginnings…great ends!!! Very inspiring read. I’l take a lot with me and press on! Thanks Courage.

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