What’s NYSC Good For? Absolutely Nothing!

Believe it or not, all these guys are graduates, and under 30

What is the value of NYSC for young Nigerians today? ABSOLUTE NOTHING!

Before anyone goes into the argument of how it provides first time job opportunities, national integration, economic benefits etc, I’d like to point out that if graduates didn’t have to wait for an NYSC posting, they would have started job hunting and placements form the final year of university. National integration? This is not 1970. People are traveling more, watching more TV, listening to radio across the country; the internet is bridging a great deal of integration gaps. And by the way, decades of NYSC has not integrated us any more than before then.

The economic benefit of NYSC is a myth. N18,000 monthly is just minimum wage, the equivalent of unskilled labour! If these graduates were employed, they most likely would have been better paid.

The average wait period for an NYSC call up is about 6 months. In most cases, this is time spent doing nothing but wait. Because a lot of graduates think it’s illegal to hold a job without NYSC discharge, they just wait, while their brains rot.

This week, some smart young men with full time development jobs realized that the new NYSC rules require them to serve in rural areas only, and that on top of that, they can only teach.

Because these guys managed to get full time jobs in this difficult market, it’s easy understand their horror, that even if they got posted to Lagos, they could not even be pulled in to continue their jobs, and their employers may have to lay them off. Suddenly, because some rocket scientists at the NYSC headquarters had a brainwave, hundreds, if not thousands of young Nigerians have had their life plans made for them, with them being the losers.

In the past, one could at least get posted to a good enough company to get decent exposure, or a company which has recognized talent could pull in a graduate pre-NYSC, and simply get them to serve on the job. But now, that’s about impossible.

Of course, if NYSC rules allow private schools to get postings, it could open a door for my uncle who owns a small private school to request for corps members, who just happen to spend a lot more time at my office, but the big IF is if private schools will be in on the NYSC party.

One day, some genius in the education, youth or planning ministry will wake up and realize that Nigerian graduates are not competitive because instead of getting sharp for the market after graduation, the spent their most significant post college years waiting for a posting that turned out to be a waste of time.


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#TeamAnakle Developer: business and code. Nigerian - Personal views

5 thoughts on “What’s NYSC Good For? Absolutely Nothing!”

  1. I like NYSC! It definitely does more good than harm (at least before the insurgence in the North escalated). The internet and social networking only brings close those who have access and interest in such. Besides, I wonder how Facebook will make a Fulani know how amala and gbegiri tastes, or how to dance to Adewale Ayuba.
    We’re too diverse in language and ethnicity in Nigeria, we need some form of integration. In as much as the NYSC Scheme may have flaws, we can modify it, not scrap it.

    My 2kobo opinion.

  2. ‘National integration? This is not 1970. People are travelling more, watching more TV, listening to radio across the country; the internet is bridging a great deal of integration gaps. And by the way, decades of NYSC has not integrated us any more than before then.’

    If it is integration, NYSC really is not integrating. Maybe it can be reformed or changed but as for right now, it is not fulfilling the purpose for which it was created.

  3. Sure the scheme has its flaws as the writer has clearly stated and more, but it’ll be lopsided not to mention its benefits.

    Today’s graduates are so comfy with life in their cities and all the conveniences, it’s a year, if you can eke a living in some of the extreme locations then you have achieved something great that cannot be quantified.

    I found myself in a very rural village school, living with the villagers, I was probably the first “foreigner” to ever live in their village. My skills, exposure were highly demanded, better than serving coffee at meetings and “facebooking” in front of an office PC.

    True it gets dangerous every year, and the experience isn’t always pleasant, rather than scrapping, an open and honest review should be done. Factors like duration, distance, remuneration, security, welfare and primary assignments should be top of the review.

    I’ve since passed out, achieved a masters degree, lived and worked in 2 cities in the diaspora and presently on the verge of serving my country once again in a different way. The service year didn’t slow me down, it made more resilient. I plan to visit the village someday soon.

    1. You do realize too, that the benefits of NYSC are dwarfed by its challenges and modern realities? The biggest issue with NYSC is that it’s doing more to make Nigerian graduates uncompetitive in the emerging world.

      Instead of pushing to be employable and attending interviews, they’re just waiting…

      Think if Mark Zuckerberg had to wait for NYSC, would he have founded Facebook?

  4. Who cares how amala and gbegiri tastes? After spending 4 years in d university, is eating diff delicacies all in d name of NYSC my priority? This NYSC thing Is sheer waste of time especially now where teaching is paramount. Totally useless to those who do not want to be teachers.

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