Many people are often unable to imagine another life outside what they have done for many years or their chosen profession. Doctors practice medicine because that’s what
they’ve studied, same goes for lawyers, pharmacists, accountants, etc. When we graduate, we are supposed to be able to go through life knowing that our certificate can provide a road map but the reality for many people is that their certificates have constrained them into thinking that they can only function in their chosen professions. A certificate basically provides you with the training required to make you proficient in a certain profession. But this doesn’t necessarily mean that you will enjoy what you do or be able to make meaningful living from doing it. There are millions of jobless people in Nigeria waiting and sleeping all day hoping to practice what they have being trained for. There are several others who have done jobs for many years but their conditions have become worse and they live in regret daily because they cannot envisage another life outside their jobs however much they hate the jobs. This situation grew from the fact that we have a certificate-driven economy and not skill-based one in Nigeria and this must change if the situation must improve. Going to the university is good but there is a big difference between acquiring a certificate and getting a
good education. There are millions of people who have certificates but have little education or the skills we need to transform our country. People often wrongly think that Nigeria’s biggest problem is unemployment. Our biggest problem is not unemployment but rather too many people who graduate from the universities and have only paper qualifications without the skills and knowledge that can make a difference in the workplace. We need to continue to insist that paper qualification is no longer sufficient considering the challenges of running today’s economy. Nigeria has challenges in all facets of our national life and is desperately
looking for people who can make a difference. So it is not right to say there are no jobs. Of course, there are jobs but we need people who have developed the skills and can see the opportunities and solve our problems. If you have done the same thing or worked on the same job for many years and the job is not paying you enough to live the life you want or plan for
the future, then it is time to develop a skill and try something new. Use your evenings and weekends to learn a new skill or join an organisation and work for free so that you can acquire the skills you will need to start another life. Quit complaining or blaming your employers because your employers really don’t care if you are happy, alive or dead.
They pay you for what they think you are worth and the day they do not find you useful, they will easily lay you off and not remember what you have put in all your life. We must always
remember that our certificates alone will not change our lives or guarantee us a future. It is simply a piece of paper and that’s what it is. Hence, we must depend less on it and cultivate specific skills that are required in certain areas where there are needs. The future we dream of will not suddenly jump on us; we must build it, work on it, put things in place and always
remember that nobody can do it for you but yourself. You must continue to interrogate yourself, find out what you are good at that you can charge a fee for.