MUCG STUDENTS AS CHANGE AGENTS
It is our responsibility as students and members of our different University communities to protect our brand.
In Methodist University where you and I belong, there is also something to protect. We are known as the RICHE brand and in anyways, the expansion of the RICHE acronym gives us: Relevant, Innovative, Creative, Holistic Education.
I crave your indulgence to understand that our educational experience cannot reflect the RICHE initiative within our circle of convergence…
Iheke Charles Enyinnaya
From the campaigns to the manifesto reading to elections then announcing of SRC executives. It hasn’t been an easy ride.
We caught up with the SRC President of Methodist University, Dansoman campus and he gave insights on a whole lot of things.
This is really worth the read, just take your time and follow the conversation all through. You don’t wanna miss any detail. Let’s get on to it!!
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: Hello, kindly tell us your full name, level, and course you’re offering?
SRC President: Hi, My name is Iheke Charles Enyinnaya. A level 400 student of the faculty of Business Administration with the option in Human Resource Management.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: Could you tell us a bit more about your background?
SRC President: I am a Nigerian by nationality and I hail from the southeastern part of the country. I am particularly from Abia State which makes me an Igbo by tribe. I was born on the 4th of February 1995 into a family of six(6) boys and a girl.
I happen to be the last child. My father is a polygamist, which of course means that I have other step-siblings. I started my Nursery and Primary education in St. Maria Goretti International school between 1997-2006. I continued my secondary education at The Danchimah Nigerian American Laboratory School (D-NALS) after SHS form one (1) from where I left to Divine Wisdom schools and completed in 2013.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: Great! So what did you study in high school, please?
SRC President: I did Art. Maybe what you would call General Arts in Ghana.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: You mentioned you are pursuing Human Resource Management. Have you always wanted to pursue that?
SRC President: No. As a matter of fact, I had always wanted to study Law. I wrote my first Waec in 2013 and passed all my subjects with an exception of English literature which I had a D7. No University in the country would accept me with that result so I had to sit for another Waec the next year.
Fortunately, I passed all subjects this time. I wrote Jamb( Joint Admission and Matriculation Board) exams twice and still didn’t get admitted in all. Just then, the door to schooling in Ghana was opened and I grabbed it with both hands because I couldn’t wait to be in school. I chose HRM as a substitute for my original intended law.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: That’s interesting… hopefully you’ll eventually be able to pursue law?
SRC President: I would really wish for that.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: Okay now this is everyone’s question. How did your presidential ambition come about?
SRC President: Lol sure. On admission to Methodist University in January 2016. I felt dissatisfied with so many things maybe because my experience did not equal my expectations. However, I was able to manage the feeling after some time because I knew my principal objective was to graduate with a good result.
One day, I attended the International Students Associations meeting on invitation from a former student during the Comrade Roland’s led administration. It didn’t take me so much time to identify with the association proper because I felt at home with a group of people I could reason with.
After becoming the president of the association (ISAMU) with the aim of affecting foreign students. Just before nominations were opened, I identified with Honourable Timothy who has been a friend and co-General Assembly member and we spoke extensively on how unattractive the SRC had become and what could be done to salvage the situation. It was after that meeting that I went to review the constitutional requirement for all portfolios in the SRC with attention on the President and Vice President position.
Originally, the plan was to run as a Vice President with Hon Timothy as the Presidential candidate. We had an understanding and we knew we could make a good pair. For us, it was not about who became the President or Vice, it was much about making sure we had the chance to work together for the common good of the students.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: Oh really?! Alright. When were you officially handed over the baton to serve as SRC president?
SRC President: Handover was on the 13th of June 2018.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: Now to the real deal, what kind of impact do you and your administration seek to create in the short office tenure?
SRC President: My administration is interested in the least person among the student populace. To review how we can enrich students experience on campus in the most significant ways. From Academics to health, social, moral and personal lives of students in MUCG. There are a number of programmes and projects in the pipeline for the next two semester geared at rejuvenating the student front and most importantly restoring the SRC’s position in the minds of students as their first resort.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: Could you highlight on some of these projects you intend to embark on?
SRC President: We have reached a conclusion with Prudential Life Insurance to provide health insurance and educational insurance policies for our students at relatively low prices. To curb the menace of students getting sick and not receiving proper medical attention as a result of lack of money in the meantime. Interestingly, the policy covers you regardless of which hospital you decide to go for your treatments to a tone of GHc 100-200 a night.
In consultation with Anathotch, a consulting firm, the SRC intends to organize a TRADE and TECHNOLOGY FESTIVAL or something similar. This company provides an initial start-up capital for young entrepreneurs in a manner that makes them 10 percent shareholders in the new idea.
This way, outside of the money they provide you, they also help with all necessary training and professional advice that will see you survive the market since if you fail, the loose and their only gain is in when your business thrives. So, with the TRATECH festival, we will make available our campus to them and similar investors, to haunt talents amongst our students and aid their growth. This is an entrepreneurial policy and I feel it is in line with the government’s target of a Ghana beyond aid.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: We really hope they are not just mere words but the school will actually see implementation. Like visible!!
SRC President: We hope to accomplish all of it too!
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: You made mention of the RICHE (relevant, innovative, creative, holistic, education) brand when you were addressing students as change agents, could you be expansive about this?
SRC President: Relevant, Innovative, Creative, Holistic Education is a summary of what a proper University education should be. The implication of any part of these missing is that the students stand a chance of not experiencing all that Tertiary education should offer. Relevant in the sense of how the educational experience has helped to make you into an asset. Innovative speaks of how much your mind has been transformed, Creative in the
context of your ability to champion unique ideas emanating from your own deep thoughts, Holistic captures that part of a network, a social and balanced effort of all factors relating to education and non-educational work.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: What is the ‘canker’ you say has eaten deep into the school’s progress? ”The MUCG problem” in your own words.
SRC President: The dissatisfaction students of MUCG feel is a big problem for the school. Our students feel not responsible for the schools’ progress since they do not seem to be benefiting from the system in any way. The side effect of this dissatisfaction usually are bad mouths of mouth about the school and sometimes even a sabotage.
These ill- behavior is a bad advert for the school. Just like a good advert will grow your customer base, a bad one will eat deep into it( Reduce it drastically) and that is one of the key problems we are faced with as a school now. We are gradually losing more student than we get each semester and if we continue that way, we may soon go out of business and MUCG may become the only history.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: Truthfully speaking we’ve heard of very convincing manifestos by some of our past presidents but to no significant avail once they’re elected into power. What would you do as a president that will ensure your name would be embedded in the hearts of the student body long after you’ve served your term?
SRC President: In the last few months, I have started to have a rethink. Maybe MUCG students do not want too much. They want a close attention to be paid to the little things that make campus unbearable. Somehow past execs and maybe even my administration has been hoping for a “big shot” to wow and for that matter, there is an oversight of little things that matter.
So I have decided we must take a few steps backward and look through the Windows of what really matters. As at yesterday, I just added to my projects “A water dispenser for the library”. We only have to continue leaving the library for the cafeteria each time we feel thirsty. Sometimes even after drinking the water, we feel too lazy to climb the stairs and return to learning. That little distraction could cause a student his good grade.
We accept our campus may be dirty due to the lack of these. As little as it may sound, the SRC can provide trash cans or fix dustbins to replace old ones and cover the areas with none at all. We need some even in our classrooms. The SRC can install liquid soap dispensers in Alpha Royal washrooms. We are making arrangements to make sure we produce the soap ourselves. That way, while it serves as a source of income for the SRC, we could manage the soap dispensers in Alpha-Royal from our pot of liquid soap in a way.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: Indeed all these intriguing projects you make mention of requires a chunk of capital. How do you intend to finance all of these projects?
SRC President: Thank you. We have had to plan half of our campaigns assuming the SRC coffers are locked up. As we speak, the last few weeks have had us working around a couple of sponsorships to be matched against the respective projects. Secondly, we have had to consider strongly projects that can generate money to pre-finance others. The soap making is one. If we can make our own soap, we can start a business for the SRC. We only need to lobby for the supply of liquid soap to management in all washrooms from Administration block to faculty building.
The SRC is also starting a book and academic accessories store. It will be a mobile store (A trolley shelve that can be moved) with customized SRC exercise books, pen, and paraphernalia. We would also sell students handbooks(In case you lose your free copy and want another), SRC constitutions in printed copies and random books on academia.
The office of the PUSAG President will also oversee the start of a viewing center on campus (Likely at the SRC study Garden) to afford students the opportunity to watch football, wrestling, basketball and other matches on campus for a fee (it would be relatively very low of course). The soap will be sold outside of our campus as well. All we need is proper packaging for it. My administration intends to look their direction by involving credible ones amongst them in respective committees to also contribute their quota to the movement for a working SRC.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: Great! We hope so! Since you came into office I’m sure you’ve been met with some pressing needs of students. What are some of them? How do plan to sort them out in the shortest possible time?
SRC President: The obviously most pressing issues of students on campus is how to pay fees( Hostel and school fees) local students who even opt for the Students loan Trust Fund have serious difficulty in assessing it. As we speak, there is no SLTF personnel on our campus to file and process loans for the student since the last officer was a national Service personnel and as at now is done with service.
I wrote to SSNIT and even before I could get a feedback, I was fortunate to sit in an NEC meeting where representatives from SSNIT head office in Accra had come for a presentation. I stole few minutes during the questions/submission time to channel this complaint and talked my way into the realities we are faced with.
They had guaranteed me an officer will be sent to our campus in the shortest possible time. The insurance policies I mentioned has a part in Education. I wish I can explain how it works in details but let me keep it short and simple since they will be making a presentation on our campus as soon as we resume properly.
The policy allows you to set aside an amount for some time which PLI will use to do business and in a manner of interest, they pay you 90% on whatever profit they make with the money. This company is over 170years old so I’m sure you can accept that reputation isn’t a worry. The interest you accumulate for a period that your money lays on their coffers adds up to your principal. In case you should need your money back, you may have just enough to settle your bills.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: I believe PUSAG isn’t all about the games. How does your office seek to foster friendly and consistent relationships with other private schools apart from the popular PUSAG games we all know of?
SRC President: I want you to anticipate a PUSAG week celebration either this semester or the next one. We want to bridge the gap between tertiary students in Accra at least. I have been appointed the Communication Director of the Greater Accra SRC Presidential Caucus(GASPC) and it has afforded me the chance to meet other SRC presidents in Accra effortlessly. We will definitely have exchange programmes during the PUSAG week. PUSAG can organize seminars, PUSAG can organize debates on pressing topics. PUSAG will do more than sports in that week.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: What do you think will hinder your progress as President and how would you address that?
SRC President: I only see one problem ahead of me. What I see is the problem of bad followership. If I could command an overwhelming loyalty of my executives and students, I’d be sure to pull down every mountain in the next two semester’s. My nationality for the records puts me in that tight corner.
How do I intend to address it? I simply want to love and show regard for my executives and my students. I want them to see that all I have got in both hands to offer its genuine love and affection for them professionally. I wouldn’t be sure if it is a remedy but that’s all I can think of as a solution. Even before the problem surfaces, I want to be in love with the people I lead. I know my love for them would make me put them first and remove the tendencies of greed and selfishness in me.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: Very thoughtful. As a former President of ISAMU, what are your plans for the association?
SRC President: Going forward, I want ISAMU and her leadership not to feel they are in competition with the SRC but to accept its place as an appendage of the SRC comfortably. That way, the SRC will become a responsible guardian to her mentee(ISAMU) and give it all the support it can. Especially, capturing their programmes and projects in the SRC budgets and either share sponsorships with them at major events or attract some on their behalf.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: As an individual, what are your principles in life? If you’ve got any philosophy as well kindly share with us
SRC President: My philosophy is that “Individually, anyone can do just little but collectively as a group, there is no limit to what can be achieved”.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: Well spoken! Do you have any other political ambition?
SRC President: Yes. I see myself identifying with leadership everywhere I go. I feel some strong responsibility to impact lives in every way possible. I want to be part of the decision-making process, in my opinion, that is the only place changes can be affected. I’m ready to start whatever change I want in the world myself.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: Let’s delve a bit into your social life. What do you do for fun?
SRC President: It may interest you to know that I get qualified many times as a boring person. I don’t really have a very interesting social life, not because I can’t, but in last few years, I have had to bury some desires to keep my head up. I play football anyway(every Saturday) and I like video games( especially adventures). I would trade a visit to good friends for a visit to the beach or a clubhouse. But, I go there as well. I believe am social by default. Lol
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: Lol I bet your friends would come at you when they see this. Off the hook with this lol, are you in an active relationship?
SRC President: I shouldn’t talk about my relationship anyway but I guess it will be a catchy part for your audience when you publish. I am currently in a relationship but it is just so complicated.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: What are your final words especially to the student body?
SRC President: I would want to admonish the entire students in MUCG to accept that we cannot solve our problem even as an SRC with the same mind we had when we created it. I wish there is any sure way to appeal to our conscience. But, I would wish above all things that we relive the memories of our lost hopes.
I want us to be optimistic going forward, not any form of blind optimism or one that is unaware of the enormity of the task ahead. I speak of a kind of affirmative believe in what can become of us in the shortest possible time.
Finally, I entreat every student to see themselves as change agents. Whatever change we want in MUCG, we have to start it ourselves. So I am calling for a “Get Involved” for all students. Our involvement in issues affecting the SRC will give us a wide variety of options to choose in a bid to salvage any situation.
I pray that God in his wisdom will grant us all insights and raise for himself a set of leaders who will continue with the vision of a progressive MUCG at the students front.
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: Should we say you’re indeed the change we’ve long anticipated?
SRC President: I pray all you would have to publish in the next two semester’s will be good news of how far God is taking the Students Union. Thank you so much for an interactive session
Kuulpeeps Methodist University: Amen to that! Most definitely we hope so too. Thank you so much for your time. It has been a very inspiring and revealing time with you. I wish you all the best and with GOD on your side, you’re bound to leap to the highest of pedestals!
SRC President: Amen.
…if we do not join forces now to beat the canker that has eaten deep into the progress of our University.
It is imminent upon us as students to join management in the quest to grow our numbers and find a lasting solution to the MUCG-problem. We can become change agents and lend a hand to restore our lost glory as a school. Ideally, we all have a role to play in building the college, if we must live our dreams.
Iheke Charles Enyinnaya