By Yomi Samuel
There are lots of courses in our higher institutions and really, none could be said to be useless per say but the demands of our country and the competition ahead should drive your kids’ courses of study and not just the mere desire to acquire a higher degree. Help your kids choose right. I don’t care if that child is in the final year, so long as the course of study is not relevant to modern and future trends, let the child go and take JAMB again to restart all over with the first being a stepping stone. Part of child education is simply helping the child to choose the right course of study at that, you won’t have to keep giving pocket money years after school for lack of job for your graduate kids.
I was discussing with a graduate of computer science recently as to why his pay was still largely below average, guess what? He felt the management of the company where he works just don’t like his gut but the truth is that he got it wrong because he failed to acquire further certificate backed skills after the first degree. I don’t see the young man climbing any further until he develops himself further hence, you must endeavour that you save enough to ensure that your children successfully complete their higher education and also put in for the necessary professional courses as back up for the initial qualifications. This must be consciously done until that time when the child will be able to on his/her own take up the challenges of further trainings.
In modern trend on job security, there’s what’s called cross training which entails the abilities of an employee to do beyond what tasks that have been assigned by the organisation; in other words, the only antidote to job loss in a harsh global economy is to be vibrant and dynamic by being able to do more than only one thing; this isn’t similar to what you want to call jack of all trades and masters of none but rather a jack of many trades and masters of all. If you help your child in that fashion, happy you will be at retirement but please note the followings:
* Your plans in actual sense should depend on the number of kids and their academic levels at the point you are nearing retirement coupled with your net worth. Take note of their current academic status and by discussions with them, plan together the completion, the cost and the time and having known the cost, you might need to inflate the figures to accommodate future changes in cost.
- In case you are lean in finances, you may have to elongate your work life if you began their education plan late or if they are still far from completing their studies. This is a big lesson to those who are yet to be married as planning ahead on the number of kids and the standards of education should be part of your long term plans. To those who have one form of delay in child bearing or those who are advanced in age before marriage, please plan for your unborn children education long before their arrival or burden becomes much at old age.
- Life is an irony and I believe that God is fair to all. If you have delay in child bearing, God may choose to prolong your life to yet see your grand children. Your first child may have come at thirty for example; if you live to seventy then your first child could be forty right? What if your first child comes at fifty and you live to ninety? You sure would be achieving same with the former scenario but your plans would have to be different. Think about it.
- One of the best methods you might have to apply if you are lean in finances is to ensure that your children school closer home to avoid other expenses like transportation, feeding and accommodation.
- You might have to consider federal institutions because of lower fees while the choice of state institutions must be in the state where you are an indigene.
- Private institutions aren’t necessarily better except for incessant strike at the public institutions which in a way had been lot better in the last few years in fact, I personally believe that private institution is a class thing which might not necessarily take the students anywhere.
- Foreign certificates are indeed more sellable but sincerely, payment for overseas training for kids at retirement can be burdensome; please think well before embarking on such no matter the potential advantages. The better option is that if funds for overseas training is not available or convenient, the kids should be motivated after the initial degrees and few years of work here to take up the challenge of further foreign training personally. Even if you are financially buoyant, a measure of wisdom is still required now that global economy is unstable.
- Still on foreign certificates, planning foreign education in UK might be unnecessarily costly these days owing to current British government’s policies on foreign students , whereas same certificates in some Asian countries might just suffice so long as these certificates are also globally recognised. More than all these, online higher degrees abound all over the places, your kids can take advantage of them.
- If you find yourself among low income earner and retirement is catching up soon, full time higher education might place too much burden on you and even the student for which reasons female students of these days engage in immoral relationships for self financing while the male counterpart take to other vices, why not consider seeking a clerical or any other form of employment for the child no matter the income while enrolling same in distant learning centres. It is just one year difference.
Having said all these, I guess you should consider certain investment vehicles to help your plans. These include joining a cooperative society, savings account and much more, stock investment now that prices are low among others.
We’ve got to leave the discussion here till next edition when we will be focusing on the entrepreneurship end of all these.