In Part 1 last week on the 13th of January, 2022, I congratulated all the young Zambians who have made it into any university in Zambia, and outside Zambia. I explained some of what they are to expect in a university. I promised that this second and last part on the subject of entering a university will deal with 10 tips any young fool determined to fail to complete their studies must definitely consider using. Below are the 10 Most Useful Tips (10MUTs) students use, if they want to fail at university.
Trick 1: Be undecided about whether you want the degree or not!
The best way to motivate yourself to lose any fight is to get into one unsure, and not passionate, about victory! You will be humiliated and beaten, thoroughly. At this stage, it is not important what degree programme you have enrolled into university for; it is absolutely important that you psyche yourself to fight to the bitter and sweet end, and graduate. Do not bother making up your mind to put everything aside and focus, concentrate, sacrifice everything to graduate,as your supreme gaol,and you will fail. Without a burning and passionate ambition to graduate, you will not graduate;it is this simple.
Trick 2: Live and act like a tourist, or refugee, while in university!
As we must know, tourists travel to have fan, and refugees escape danger. Tourists spend a lot of time on sites they enjoy the most. Refugees tend to stay longer in safe, comfortable zones. Both are visitors, really. Go on, and live in the university as if your cell phone, the internet and social media, boys and girls, alcohol and drugs, parties and clubbing, music, sports and all social and cultural activities including religion are more enjoyable than books, lecturers, assignments, labs, tutorials and all academic tasks and you will not see your stay in the university past the first year, this I can promise you!
Trick 3: Refuse to develop love for reading, lectures, studying, assignments, tests and exams!
Pump up a negative attitude to studying, doing assignments, labs and preparing for tests and exams as if they are some cruel unavoidable terrorists tortures you must suffer, rather than the actual joy of being in university, and you have failed even before you write the first test! In university more than anywhere else, when people say to you “good luck” they actually mean “you will reap what you will sow”! Don’t study and do not doall of the work you are required to do, and you will be shown the door, very quickly too.
Trick 4: Don’t bother about time and its management!
It is true that most of us, given an infinite amount of time, can complete and achieve almost anything. Sadly, we are on Earth for only so long, and no more time. In the limited time we are alive, we must pack in as much life as we can! We can recover, recycle and reverse almost anything apart from time. Time moves forward always; it is constant forward motion; it never stops and has no reverse gears. Frequently put off doing your work till the last minute and you are a failure, and a potential fraud, and thief of other people’s work, even before you finish the first semester of the first year.
To produce quality academic work, the trick is simple: complete your tasks well before the deadline to have the possibility to check it thoroughly for mistakes and poor quality, before handing it in. The opposite is true; rush through your work at the last minute and soon you will be tempted to start making shortcuts, and crooks and universities are not friends!
Trick 5: Don’t bother about the quality of your work!
A university, ideally, is the last and highest institution for producing and processingquality knowledge. You start university studies because you have decided to be passionate about a specific branch of knowledge. It is not crucially important how you find yourself studying anything: it is important that you respect the need to produce the highest possible quality work you can, always, as you study. Do shoddy work and don’t even bother to check it for mistakes and overall quality and you should clearly have been anywhere else other than in a university, because your stay will be very short if your university has any reputation to protect!
Trick 6: When times get tough, blame others!
Who does not know that the majority of students in Zambia are desperately poor and have been denied the possibility to develop genuine love for knowledge and how it is produced, eh? Only you, and usually you feel and think like this because you have not been paying attention to all your university work! Always, when things get tough and times are harder, do pretend that you have unique challenges and problems whose causes have nothing to do with you; you are an innocent victim and it is all too much for you. You are guaranteed of not completing your studies with this kind of mindset and defeatism.
Trick 7: Be careless, disorganised and let chaos rule your life!
At the beginning of every semester, you will usually get all the information concerning your courses including course modules, tests, assignments and examinations and their time allocations. Do not read every word carefully and understand this vital information and you are guaranteed not to have a clue what is happening in each course at any time, in a semester. Disregard making a plan about how you will approach every course, and learn to discipline the rest of your student life to do what every course demands of you and stick to a plan and you might as well go and demand for a refund for the fees you have just paid!
Trick 8: Get into unhealthy and unproductive relationships!
Don’t mind whom you make friends and socialise with, and make fan, pleasure and generally lazily consume most of your time and you are a very short-term tourist in the university. Envy the rich kids and cosy up to them, and you will be their slaves, for life. Throw in a mutually fake love relationship too, and you might as well have never set foot in the university.
Trick 9: Develop a negative attitude to your lecturers and their courses and assignments!
Most genuine lecturers love their work, tend to be very, to over confident, about it, and may also frequently come across as impatient and arrogant. Easily and usually without any personal effort to resist their provocations, develop a negative attitude to your lecturers and their courses and assignments and you have dug yourself into a hole! Develop arrogance, and use every opportunity to miss their lectures and not do their assignments. Do not care if you do not do their tests, let alone fail them. You have very cleverly and so moronically excluded yourself from university, well done!
Trick 10: Lie to yourself that you have a lot of other options if you do not complete your university studies!
As often as you can, tell and remind yourself that you are neither the first nor the last student not to complete your university studies or to fail. Feed yourself the lie that you, apparently, have many other options waiting for you out there. This is one great way to mentally avoid confronting your workload and putting in your best efforts at studying. This trick is second only to failing to motivate yourself to generate great passion for graduation, You are priming yourself to fail. And you most definitely will fail. And then you will find out what the wider world has in store for you.
Any of these tricks, and there are many others besides these, alone or in any combination are capable of facilitating an early exist from university, prolonging graduation, and or forcing a foolish student to fail.
Any average dose of passion, determination, discipline, focus on studies, careful management of personal life and relationships and normal positive attitude to lecturers and course work will happily and safely see you through your university studies to graduation. University can be, and is, an exciting, enrichingsocial journey and a journey through knowledge and its acquisition. Don’t make it hell, please, for yourself.
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