Letter to Jack

by - 10:10 PM

Dear jack,
I acknowledge the receipt of your email, accompanied with an
attachment of your admission letter. Jack, when I received the mail few
weeks back, I jumped for joy throwing my fists in the air like a woman
who had been barren for so long and discovered she’s pregnant. I know
you felt the same way when you got your admission notification. I know
the kind of joy that comes being admitted into one of the ‘best’
universities in the country. So, jack, I want to congratulate you on your
success. Perhaps, among the pantheon of those, who despite huge
disappointments challenged themselves not to be overridden by failures,
you imagine and work towards a loftier life and your imagination has
taken you to where you want to be. I am not surprised, your sacrifice of
burning the night oil paid off.
Jack, I choose this medium instead of an email. The gusto of
progressive technology and growing global communities has strangled
the memory, of letter writing, which I find far more interesting and
engaging. The fragrance of reality that comes with the affairs of life gist
baked into page; handwriting that cannot be replicated by a blinking
cursor comes with so many memories laced in it. So, jack pardon me if
you’d expected the response to the email dated 4th January 2022 in your
inbox. Meanwhile, I need to apologies for responding late. I am sorry.
Jack, the life in oversea is not how Mr. Ben, the community raconteur
painted it to be. Well, I had forgiven him long time ago, for painting the
life in oversea like Garden of Eden on earth. Every day, I wind in and out
to put life bricks together to make a solid wall. The journey hasn’t been
rosy but providence has been kind. Once again I am sorry for responding
late. I know you will come here and witness things yourself one day.
Jack, now that you are admitted into XYZ University, it is time
for you to do more than what you call your best. I tell my friends here
that, real life doesn’t start when you graduate; it starts in the higher
institution. While I have not written this to sermonize the life in higher
institution, let me say that it is a place you will enjoy. Jack, I have a
whole a lot to talk about, so, I have decided to make my letter episodic.
This will save you from boredom and you will have the chance to grasp
the content of each episode of my letters. Jack, I am not unaware you
have been told many things about school. I remember, in the third
paragraph of the mail you sent me, you joyfully reported the various
books you have read and still reading on how be an exceptional student
and how you can become an A student throughout your stay on campus.
This is a step to greatness. Well done, Jack.
Those authors you’ve drank from the well of their knowledge just saved
me the time of telling you what to do in school to be exceptional. But,
jack, the rule is universal. “Attend classes, devote your time to study and
eat well.” Is the universal thought of anyone on how you can become an
exceptional student. It is true. Study and read. Let me reiterate; that you
must follow the universal law of academic excellence. Go to class. Read.
Eat well (I know you don’t joke with food).
Jacko (That name I call you anytime I want to tell you something special,
do you still remember?) the end product of your schooling should be
learning. Jack, it is possible you are in school and you are not learning.
Most times, people misconstrue cramming for learning. Jack, cramming
is a tentative retention mode and doing that hasn’t made learning take
place. Jacko, cramming is for those that carry the school mindset, while
learning is for those who want to be lifelong learners. True learning
comes from genuine education. You might cram and make a good grade
in the attempt to get a better job, that’s fine because it is the way we
have been programmed. But, jack trust me, there is more to education
than this entitlement mentality. True learning makes you uncomfortable
with the One-Right Answer syndrome that the system has injected into
many.
Jack, it is school that you only have just one right answer to a question,
possibly because that’s the depth of the lecturer whose note is that of
the 18th century. Jack, imagine a lecturer teaching students with 18th
century note in the 21st century. That’s catastrophic! You now see the
origin of (ORAS)? Nemo dat quod non habet (no one gives what he does
not have). Imagine you giving your 18th century structured lecturer a
21st century modified answer, that heck of work for him. He will fail you
because he doesn’t know. Jack, do you now see how those sentineling
the school affairs are killing creativity and genuine education?( This
letter is not to shower the rain of blame on any one)
Jack, I am not saying you should be rude to your lecturers in school,
please don’t be. You can’t know better than them. But, please, have a
redefined mindset. Jacko, schooling ends on paper (certification) but
education is in the mind. The mind is the only limitation of anyone in
this dispensation; you see why you need to train your mind? There is no
ONE answer to a particular question, except mathematics.
Jack while others are cramming to pass, please ensure you are reading
to know. Knowing is a function of revelation. Education is beyond a
special training or certification. It is a lifelong process one must be
committed to. Jack it is 4:00am here, I have to go to sleep. I still have a
lot to tell you, that’s why I am making my letter episodic. If you would
forget anything in this letter, please, don’t forget that “Cramming is
tentative; learning which is a function of education is a lifelong process.”
Jack; bye and please enjoy your day. Let me leave you with the words of
Theodore Roosevelt, “There has never been a man in history who led a
life of ease, whose name is worth remembering”
Yours sincerely,
Emmanuel.

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