School is a place of learning. It is a place set aside for academic activities, knowledge, moral, values are all impacted in school. It is expected traditionally, especially in higher institutions that students should wake up in the morning brush, take food, bath and go for lecturers. After lectures closure they return back take bath, lunch and have siesta before reading or doing other assignments.
But this assumption is seriously changing amongst students on regular basis. Our reporter interviewed some hawking students in Federal Poly, Oko Anambra state. Asked whether she is a student and why she is hawking the HND1 office technology and management student who prefers anonymity said “Yes, I am in HND1 office technology and management, I engaged in this business so as to help myself. Textbooks now are from 1500 up, because training myself so with this egg roll and soya milk I pay my bills”.
Asked how she is managing the business with her studies she said “I wake up early to prepare it, though it is not easy because of my morning lectures, when lectures close, I hawk it around the school , but the thing there is that I don’t hawk much, because my department students patronize me well-well, even other department in this our block patronize me, so when I reach lodge I read, I don’t always have time for socials as I am engaged”.
Another student who identified herself as Mary Uzor who hawks fried groundnut said “I am a student of home and rural economics, with this groundnut hawking, I support my parents, I bought most of my textbooks. I know it is not easy for my parents, so I have to help them, there is nothing wrong in it”. On how she combines her hawking and study she said “No, it does not take my studies time, beside it is not a perishable goods, although there is market”
Also a male student who engaged in hawking egg roll and zobo a native drink said “I am a student of mass communication, it is a source of help to myself and my parents, it has been my help in buying textbooks. Where I am studying 10 courses and all their textbooks range from N2000 to 1,500, it is with this hawking that I am able to do it”. Speaking on the challenges he said “Reading has its own time, it doesn’t stop me from lecture, although yes it is stressful, but I scheduled my time very well, just that one has little time of his own”.
On the views of students amongst their hawking follows, Ifeanyi Udeocha who said “it is because of how tough things are, it is not easy for anyone, almost all the students you hardly feed 0-1-1, coupled with textbooks that are indirectly must for students, so it is not easy”.
Emeka Umeagwa “I think I will link it to struggle for survival, nobody wants to fold hand and watch, somebody must survive”. On whether it does not affect education Emeka said “really it does my friend hawks, so I know how tired he use to be to the extent that he cannot read, but what will one do, education is too costly in this country”.
Udemma Juliet said “This could be likened to entrepreneur practical, some students after the practical starts doing it as a source of income and help for their family, so is very good”.
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