The struggle for success by university students.
According to the ‘Africa Higher Education Student Survey Project,’ the rate of attrition or drop-outs is 85% loss from mathematics in Madagascar, more than 95% loss from mathematics in the Central African Republic, and 75% in Niger.
These losses may not be fully representative, and some part of them may be due to students switching to less challenging fields as happens in United States universities. Nevertheless they suggest high dropout rates in many countries.
A third of all sub-Saharan university students (one million) are in Nigeria, the most populous African country and one with a 10% tertiary enrollment rate.
The next-most significant African country for tertiary education is South Africa, with 500,000 students. South Africa has a 40% dropout rate. Ethiopia, the second-most populous African country, contributes another 150,000 tertiary students.
It appears that in the three countries representing more than half of sub-Saharan university students, at least half of university students graduate.
In comparison with developed-world universities, the dropout rate for tertiary students in the United States is 46% the mean dropout rate in the United Kingdom is 16% dropout rates in 1999 were 28% in Germany and 45% in France, according to various studies.
Studies at Makerere show that the reasons for withdrawal from studies or dropping out include personal issues, employment, financial issues, academic preparation and choice. However, these reasons vary in importance for different groups.
Studies show that majority of those who dropped out in Ugandan and other foreign universities are first year students because of personal, unknown, academic, employment, related, financial and medical reasons.
The drop-out levels for young women in universities in Ghana, Nigeria, Kenya and Zimbabwe are high compared to men.
Philemon sente a 23 yr old Ugandan student at Cavendish University perusing a Bachelor’s degree in Business administration being the first born in a family of 5 children this came with very many challenges , his father a former employee at Mukwano group of companies lost his job right after Philemon had enrolled at Cavendish University Uganda , This only meant that he had to either drop out right after his first semester at school or find means of rising his own tuition since his father could no longer support his education at the institution. things changed all of a sudden, and Philemon’s life become so complicated . He saw his long term dreams crashing and the success he had also hoped for draining away, however this did not stop him from thinking like a man ,an adult perhaps to see that he stands his ground and meet his dreams ,he begun searching for jobs here and there to find work in order to rise his tuition but in vein. He later submitted to jobs he had never hope to do in his entire life order to rise his school fees , these jobs included washing cars, singing at functions(musical performances), being a photographer and also working as a night guard at a private residence. Philemon says he hardly gets enough time to rest since he has to work long hours in order to meet his financial demands, from the time he started paying his own bills he had to leave his father’s home and struggle on his own to see that he archives his dreams, Philemon adds that his relocation also meant traveling a long distance to reach school on the days where he lacks transport, from Gabba to Nsambya it takes him about 2 hours on foot to reach the school. “it is not easy to balance school with work” he says since they are both equally important, how ever it is these struggles that keep Philemon believing that what seemed to be impossible at first of acquiring an education is more than possible if he keeps his focus . “success begins at Cavendish University, but does not end here for me” he says. Philemon like many other University students around the world face these common challenges of having to rise tuition for themselves, but their life goals, and dreams determine whether one can handle the struggle or give up and drop out. for Philemon’s case he is not yet ready to drop out of school so long as he has his two limbs and a brain, he is ready to keep up with the fight for his position in the world,hence the struggle for success is just beginning.