Knowledge is key for personal and societal growth. Sharing knowledge has helped mankind survive and evolve into the intelligent and productive species he is today. It has helped mankind learn the tactics of survival and elude extinction.
“Sharing knowledge is not about giving people something, or getting something from them. That is only valid for information sharing. Sharing Knowledge occurs when people are genuinely interested in helping one another develop new capacities for action; it’s about creating learning processes.” Peter Senge
Reading this quote took me on a reverie as I thought about my experience as a Scholar Under the Feed the Future Nigeria Agricultural Policy Project with the graduate students and professors in the department of Agriculture, Food and Resource Economics (AFRE) at Michigan State University.
“Hey Kevin, can you spare a few minutes to walk me through how to go about the assignment on heteroskedasticity? I don’t seem to understand it” I asked, “Of course Aisha, I could even send you some resources after our discussion that could help you understand better” said Kevin.
“Hi Edward, could you share some tips and tricks about understanding Dr Dillon’s course, I’m really not getting the whole causality thing” I said, “It’s okay Aisha, it gets interesting after the first few classes, I’ll share with you some notes and books that would be quite helpful throughout the course” Said Edward
“Hey Aisha, you are always welcome to ask questions about your classes or research, I can always help or refer you to someone who can” Awa said with a smile
I could go on and on with each encounter I had with the Graduate students at AFRE, from the study group meetings, class group discussions, scholars at the MSU international center, one on one discussions (physically and via Skype), to the Professor’s office hours. These interactions made me realize the power in knowledge sharing! The beauty of it all is having a support system that shares its mistakes with you so you can avoid repeating them and reassures you that it has your back at any time, encourages you not to fear making mistakes rather embrace it and learn from it, and thus serving as a huge confidence booster. At the end of the period of my stay at MSU, I can proudly say 70% of resources, experiences and knowledge gathered came from my interactions with students and scholars.
I will never forget all the great minds that shared their knowledge with me not only because it helped build my intellect and but it also helped me become a better person. I hope to keep the candle burning by sharing my knowledge, experience and resources with my colleagues back home in Nigeria and also encourage them to develop a good reading culture.
“Share your knowledge. It’s a way to achieve immortality” Dalai Lama