X-raying the University of Ibadan’s new ‘Technology Fee’ Charge for Students


By – Babalola Khadeejah

It is crystal clear that there’s an element of truth in the saying that ”the only constant thing in life is change” because we live in a world that keeps on evolving and advancing in global technological trends.

From stone age to computer age, man has cease not to prove that he indeed is a complex creature. He keeps on fashioning life to suit his taste and ensure his convenience. In virtually all spheres of life, evolution keeps on creeping in and with that, the superiority of human over other creatures can never be quantify.

One of the undeniable evolution prowess made by man is shaping the world to what is termed ‘a computer village’ wherein information and communication can be gotten and carried out respectively in any corner of the world.
With the said above, one of the vital yardsticks to measure how advanced a particular society is, is how technologically conscious and how vast her ability to appreciate and utilize the blessings of the internet.

Thus, every society tend to embrace any latest development in the world of internet evolution.
University of Ibadan, the first and the best, chose not to be an exception in the practicality of the above subject matter as she recently included ‘technology fee’ charge in the recently released school fee schedule of her student. The reason for this latest development, as justified basically by the school management, is “to cover the expenses of providing a reliable and robust internet services for students”
Isn’t it amazing?

That beautiful feeling of not having to spend a penny on internet subscription for months, that unexplainable joy of gaining access to the internet anytime one feels like, that fantastic sensation of being able to download textbooks and course materials, check academic videos online, penetrate into anywhere in the world to gather information without any phobia of data getting exhausted at any moment? Every sane human will agree with me that the feeling will be absolutely stupendous.

However, taking a deeper look into this motive, I discovered that it is just a similitude of a fiery masquerade clad in a beautiful bridal attire. The view from the exterior is surely amazing but what is rooted within is far from being good. The motive of the ‘technology fee’ sounds theoretically reasonable but with a critical insight, one will discover that it will surely be bias and harmful to the students and in some ways affect the reputation of the school. What sort of free internet blessing does a 400 level student of the faculty of Technology who will be out of UI for a period of six month enjoy basically? How can a student from the faculty of Agriculture (a faculty that houses a reasonable number of students) who is doing PYTP outside the shore of UI relish the beautiful resultant effect of the levy?
What about the unlucky majorities residing outside the campus? And the ‘studentpreneurs’ who try and maintain their head above water by getting themselves engaged in selling of data bundles?
Indeed, this will be a bias and unfair innovation to the students in these categories.

Likewise, a mystery one is yet to unravel about the technology fee is its feasibility. Is it that, each student will be given a special password or there will be a general password which even an outsider can gain access to?

In that setting where unlimited free access to internet is permitted, one can foresee truancy taking its toll to the fullest, likewise one can anticipate a great deal of internet misuse and abuse, and above all a forefeel of massive unseriousness on the part of the student.

Even without internet connection, a stroll to the General Study Programme Centre in the latter part of the day will make one wonder if UI is now admitting student to study ”Yahoo’ or ‘gaming and movie studies” because, gallantly sitting before most of the students is laptops of different brands which they use to basically download seasonal movies and do all sort.

We can not underrule the fact that, not all students abuse the ‘privilege’ of their access to the school’s WiFi password, however, for every student gaining free access to the internet, it is not too far to conclude that more than 70% will be using it for something out of the scope of their academics. Let us now imagine the situation whereby a student can sit in the comfort of his room and at his finger tip is free internet access, it is thus as sure as death that the academic performance in such a setting will undergo evolution from good to worse.
Conclusively, the idea behind the inclusion of technology levy is indeed a beautiful one, however, giving a deep insight into the motive avails one of the risk outweighing its benefits, it can thus be said that the necessity of such evolution is quite superfluous.


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