Some people are of the opinion that having a first class does not guarantee career or financial life success. Others suggest that coming out of school with weak grades makes it very difficult to make something good out of life.
Though people tend to defend the category they fall into, let’s get objective here.
The University life has two vital aspects. While its important to acquire good grades its also as important to acquire communication, teamwork, leadership and business skills or what is commonly called informal education.
Many students focus only on the academic work and forget that a quality education is composed of not only adademic success but also having skills and abilites that can create impact and add value to systems.
Such people get to realize after their final exam in school that they had passed through school missing out on what was also as important…acquisition of skills and experience.
Having good grades gives one platforms to tap into. The first class GPA is not an end itself but a tool to be used for greater exploits.
Growing up in life requires one to “stack the odds in ones favour”. What this means is that you do your very best to create platforms or opportunities that can give you an edge.
Though first-class graduates aren’t always the most successful or richest nor have the best business sense they are nonetheless usually open to more opportunities such as job offers and scholarships.
Companies like Google emphasize outstanding grades and thats one of the secrets of their success…”Hire people who are smarter than you”.
But another truth is that such companies also require people who have outstanding technical, communication and leadership skills.
The best option for any student will be to have both so as to be open to more opportunities.
Do as much as possible to plan your stay in school. Its advisable to spend the first 2 years or so laying a solid foundation for your GPA and then going on to explore and develop oneself after that.
By that time the student should have known how to manage his academic life and can then blend other activities with it.
My advice to anyone who has the above question in mind is this: make the best grades that you possibly can while in school. Give it your very best but dont think that’s all you need to succeed. Like they say in Yoruba; “ona kan o woja”…meaning “There are many roads to the market”.
Obviously there are people who have graduated with third-class or lower who have gone on to do great things. It’s really not about the grades themselves but what they can help you achieve.
If you have given your academics your best and it hasn’t worked out, please don’t write yourself off. Go ahead and develop the skills and experience that can give you leverage or an edge over others. I know of many people around me who have failed to limit themselves by their academic class.
On a personal note, I don’t think that a third-class graduate has a third-class brain. It takes someone who knows his personal worth, has taken time to discover his talents and has groomed them to know more than being limited by what a system decides to label one as.
Please, get the best education you can in and out of the classroom. Keep solving everyday problems around you as you go along and in no time you’ll find that you are on a level you probably never dreamed of.
If you have any questions or comments on managing life on campus. Please, feel free to mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Oduntan Odubanjo is Product Manager at Extracens and creator of buukWorm Mobile. He is a believer in the true Nigerian spirit of excellence. As a former Google Intern, he currently serves as Google Campus Ambassador at OAU. He is the writer of the 50 Simple Steps to Making As and has taught and spoken at several Campus events.