Do more, talk less
THE EDITOR, Sir:
I would like to congratulate V. Carnegie for the letter on February 11 titled, 'What a shame', that addresses the sterility of our nation's tertiary-level students.
Indeed, these students do not seem adequately stimulated to produce the innovation or inventiveness to rise above or circumvent the harsh reality facing Jamaican citizens, but are whining along with the uneducated masses about their water situation. What can the engineering students do to assist the community? Is it advisable to build wells? Does the University of Technology (UTech) have a tank or a catchment area? Why not? Perhaps with the 'land of wood and water' suffering through so many droughts, the institution ought to come up with a course where students would be challenged to find solutions.
It is not only UTech that suffers this horrible inertia, it is also that seat of higher learning the University of the West Indies, where it seems, the only study of note and much referenced in recent times is a study on the virtues of dancehall music.
Please, don't wait
So, if you are waiting for some motivated undergrad to produce an extensive report on the effects of crime on the next generation, a thesis on the practice of squatting on gully banks without proper sanitation, or a release to the public as to how best to get our children fluent in the universal language of English, don't bother holding your breath.
Many inventions, scientific advancements and studies on societal trends are sparked in colleges and universities where students (and faculty too!) see themselves as potential contributors to the development of the communities in which they are located, regularly producing journals, reports and documentaries to stimulate public discourse, to provide information or even to engage in hearty protest against the ills of the system.
Not so with our universities. The students seem jaded and lacklustre, locked away zombie-like in these garrisons of 'higher learning' and seldom deign to see what they can do for the world outside.
What a toll the toxic environment has extracted from the society!
I am, etc.,