“My dreams slip away
Like pot potters and clay.”
It is so appalling when you hear students complain of one unfavourable school condition or the other. One cannot blame us because we all envisage the best from school, more importantly, OUR school, the University of Nigeria.
So many students still stand on the fact that UNN is wallowing in her past glory. This may be true, because what our forefathers met in this school was a strong, effective and reliable administration where things were done orderly and students were given priority.
Recently, the “Prestigious” University cannot be found on the list of the top 10 Nigerian Universities. We hear and see it every day; “To Restore the Dignity of Man”. I believe strongly that this dignity was actually lost with the intrusion of corrupt and self-centred administrators over the years. However, it is expedient to understand that the new generation of students are not expected to suffer for the inadequacies of the previous administrations.
We are exposed to series of harmful conditions on this university campus and most times, I console myself with endless dreams. I dream of a better place, free of prejudice. I dream of freedom, to bring to reality the hopes of Martin Luther King Jr; this time, not for black Americans but for UNN Lions and Lionesses.
I dream of a campus where I would not stand on a long queue for everything, even for matric and convocation gowns. I dream of a hostel that will be kept clean at all times with steady electricity and water supply. I dream of a classroom that will efficiently accommodate all my classmates and I without having to squeeze myself into a seat or even stand for hours, or sit on the stairs (in G.S Building), inhaling sweat and underarm odour. I dream of a department, with lecturers whose sole aim is to impart knowledge into the students and not to fail us. I dream of an administration that swiftly responds to the needs of the students and not requiring of us, long letters before something can be done.
I dream of a school where I will not be asked to pay more dues than buy books, exhausting, within one week of resumption, my pocket money for the semester. I dream of a school where I will not be forced to pay fees for the laptop I already have, because I won’t register my courses if I don’t.
We hear stories of how our old super lions and lionesses got free food at the famous Ekpo and Franco refectories. I dream of when this will be re-implemented. However, it is high time this dream transformed into a wholesome reality.
My UNN dreams are unlimited. I only desire that the school’s dignity will be truly restored so that when we pride ourselves as lions and lionesses of the only university of Nigeria, we will be rest assured that we do not do so in vain.
(Written by Akaelu Chidiogo Shalom, a Student of English and Literary Studies, University of Nigeria, Nsukka. )