Postgraduate Experience in Covenant University
“The idea that CU was designed to be a leading University, not only in Nigeria, not even in Africa, but to come within the league of world Universities makes it mandatory for it to put a great premium on research” – Dr. David Oyedepo
Post graduate education involves learning and studying for degrees, professional or academic certificates, or other qualifications for which a first or Bachelor's degree generally is required, and it is normally considered to be part of higher education.
There are two main types of qualification studied for at the postgraduate level: academic and vocational degrees. Covenant University (CU) offers both and is committed to raising exemplary research scholars in the educational sector of Sub-Saharan Africa, and indeed, the world.
International Postgraduate students of Covenant University all agree that the institution has brought a new level of depth to their academic experiences.
Melanie Hekeu, from the Cameroons, a graduate of Biology, from the University of Vouale in Cameroon explains how a year at Covenant University has enriched her educational experience, academically and otherwise.
She is currently running her Masters in Covenant University, studying Microbiology, and specializing in Environmental Microbiology at the Department of Biological Sciences.
Commenting on her CU experience so far and especially on what attracted her to the university all the way from Cameroon. She explained that ever since she heard about the academic prowess of Covenant University especially in the area of research and innovation, even as an undergraduate in another university, she had dreamed that she would go to CU for her Masters. On graduation, she quickly enrolled into the CU graduate school.
Melanie, speaking about her interest in the larger than life vision of Covenant University, and its strong spiritual investment on its students; enthused that she has been totally transformed by her stay in CU, and is already making plans to encourage her younger sibling to follow suit.
When asked how CU has impacted on her so far, as against getting her graduate studies in Cameroon, Melanie said, "I have made life-long friends from different parts of Nigeria, and even around the world, as we have other international students from around the world, and it has broadened my educational experience and it also shows employers that I am adaptable to new situations and can understand other cultures and traditions, something that is increasingly important in the modern world."
Sharon Njie, another Postgraduate student from Cameroon running a Master’s programme in Marketing, while commenting on her own experience said it has been very enriching except for the fact that she has been away from her family for almost two years; as she cannot afford to travel often to see them.
She fondly calls the time she has spent so far, studying in Nigeria, one of the best years of her life. "There were times when it was challenging and really pushed me to extremes, but the overall breadth and depth of my experience as an international student has had a profound and positive impact on my life. I still can't describe what the “Go-Slow” in Lagos is to anyone though," she said.
Sharon decided to participate in the study abroad programme to give her a chance to gain first-hand experience of the society and culture that she had been hearing about for two years as an undergraduate student. She also wanted to immerse herself in a way of life that was different to that in the Cameroons without going entirely way out of Africa; but she still missed friends and family from home and there were still some significant differences she had to get used to.
Sharon thought TV and the media had already prepared her for the move to Nigeria, but she found that the structure of taught classes in Nigeria was different to what she was used to in the Cameroons.
Language for Sharon was also a little difficult since she hails from the French speaking part of Cameroon; especially when it came to using complicated English words.
She said, “At first it was really daunting to give a presentation in front of the class, with an obvious struggle with most big English words, but you get used to it pretty quickly and everyone seemed to like the Cameroonian accent."
When she was not studying or working on her research project, Jennifer took full advantage of the Nigerian lifestyle. "I was lucky to have friends inviting me home for the Christmas holidays for instance, and being fully accepted in their homes and treated like family; very touching experiences that humbled me. I would advise anyone to take part in a study-abroad programme because no matter how hard it was at times, it was an emotionally, culturally and ultimately a financially rewarding experience," Sharon said.