Change is an over-flogged issue in many quarters, and the fact that it has left a sour taste on Nigerians’ mouths does not help matters when talking about concepts such as this. Nonetheless, one of the fundamental features of the phenomenon is that is is inevitable; it is bound to happen, and it will always happen. Indy Press is an organization that revers its readership, and being deeply rooted in our ways, we very much appreciate, study, and draw insights from our readership’s reactions to our content. So it was that the University Management’s decision to run a virtual semester hit us badly. Where were we going to start from? How would we get insights from readers’ reactions to our print publications? How would we get readers to engage our content?
These were the challenges that faced us as an organization at the commencement of this semester. Undeterred, we got to grips with Search Engine Optimization strategies, introduced a Readers’ Choice Awards system, redefined our brand tone to be reader-centric, and we have not been badly since then. These measures tell of the second feature of change; adaptability. Change is constant; to adapt is left to humans. We as an organization have not only clamoured for the University of Ibadan’s adaptation to e-learning, we have also adapted to digital journalism. We have found valuable insights from digital analytics. We were hit, but we were undeterred, and we are the better for it.
This semester, our focus has been on driving positive change on the University of Ibadan campus. We have ensured not to shy away from issues that need to be addressed and flogged. We did contemplate silence in the face of the Management’s loud silence and the recent victimization and silencing that has been rife on our school campus. However, the openness of the conscience-wound and the need for the healing truth have hindered us from shutting down our computers when burning issues sat and still sit in piles on the school campus. We have been bold in our choice to stand with the students in our journalistic agitations, for the fourth estate is the voice of the masses, and students are masses in the University of Ibadan.
As we round off our joint journalism journey for this semester, Indy Press as an organization cannot but be thankful for the achievements we have had so far. The change taught us; it moulded us; it made us better. We took its lessons, and we have good things to say of what we have learnt. Beyond that, we are grateful that we have served as a voice for change on issues affecting the student populace. We do not know the ends to which our articles got to, but we are beginning to see traces of a positive change.
There are indications that there would be a change in the academic calendar. There is a proposition for a month’s extension of the semester to accommodate physical lectures and tests. There are also clear indications that the halls of residence will be made open during this period, and in preparation for the next semester. This passes a strong message that adaptability sometimes comes in the form of back-tracing one’s steps and picking a route that was erstwhile abandoned. The University of Ibadan Management must have, through the E-learning Feedback Form, got insights that the virtual semester has been underproductive. It is slightly commendable that the University has desisted from adamantly sticking to a haphazard migration to full e-learning and has finally decided to have physical round-off lectures for one month.
Our sign-off publication for this semester is centered on the theme change. Our staff of writers explored change as a concept, its characteristics, the nuances of change, and the need for periodic. Change. As you pore through the fresh articles for this week, one thing will always come to mind: change. From the satirical piece, to the health article, to the sports piece, change is a concept that has been extensively explored, yet not overflogged. The content for this week is like oven-fresh bread.
The decision to explore the concept of change means so much to us as an organization whose chief ideal is to be a change agent in society. As you go through some articles and laugh at their humour; as you nod at the relatability of some articles, and ponder on the deep reflections of some others, remember that change is inevitable, yet this same change can be adapted to, and in fact needs to be adapted to, if you wish to advance. It is only when you have agreed to adapt and get better, you will be grateful.
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