By Rebecca Ejifoma
Westerfield College, Lagos has demonstrated its quest for excellence in academics after three universities from the UK, US and Canada awarded scholarships to most of its graduating students to study various degree courses.
The students were awarded the scholarships during the sixth graduation ceremony of the college in Lagos recently.
Among the beneficiaries is Chinazamekpere Aranonu, the overall best graduating student. She is set to leave for the University of Hertfordshire, UK, as she intends to become a Paediatrician because of her love for children.
“It is like a dream come true. Westerfield College has been a blessing to us all; the teachers are very encouraging. While we learnt from our teachers, we learnt from fellow students. But I remain grateful to God. I tried my best to stand out and God rewarded me.”
According to a lecturer from Hertfordshire UK, Dr. Edna Stan-Maduka, the students were awarded the scholarships as way of encouraging them to come to the UK to study.
Addressing the students on ‘Dare to Dream’, she said dream is the only thing they have to do for themselves. “Nothing should stop you from dreaming. The road is not that smooth but I tell you, keep dreaming.”
Stan-Maduka also stressed that schools should stop graduating children, as university environment is meant for adults not children. “Let them get to age 18 first. Let them be matured first. You may be brilliant but not matured enough to handle the university level.”
The Nigerian-born UK lecturer described double-promotion in secondary schools as a wrong practice. “We hear that schools in Nigeria graduate students from secondary schools aged 14 and 16. Really, I don’t understand that. It is wrong and needs to stop.”
The Principal of the college, Mr. Dare Falodun, said the event marks the beginning of a long journey, adding that the school had to sort the scholarships for its students.
He urged the graduands to put in their best, be dedicated, hardworking, innovative, committed and willing to make a difference in everything. “We teach them the qualities they must put in to achieve best result in school. When you are knowledgeable, you are pulled out of poverty.”
Dignitaries at the occasion included the Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta, Brigadier General Paul Boroh, represented by Mr. Tam Molonge; Head of Education, US Embassy, Ms. Adeola Osam; Major General Rtd. Adewuyi; Mrs. Susan Oyemade, among others.