God surely crowns the year with His goodness and His paths drop fatness …and so on December 22, 2020, I was awarded a Ph.D in Communication Studies at the Lagos State University (LASU). May His name be praised forevermore.
I started this journey in 2016, three years after I was appointed editor of Saturday Punch. Two things informed my decision- I wanted to develop myself and add something tangible to my life having worked hard day and night to serve my company for over 22 years then.
The second reason was my curiosity to learn more about communication has seen the role of propaganda in the 2015 elections and how it affected the results of the elections.
As a journalist, I knew that Nigerians were highly shortchanged in that the media seemed not to avail them of options to choose from. Media attention was placed on two candidates and unfortunately, media reports in many cases were skewed in favour of a particular candidate.
So, I was determined to learn more about propaganda which I later found to have been employed in governance for hundreds of years; and majorly used by the military.
Anyway, that was the beginning of my journey to obtaining a doctoral degree. Combining this with my hectic schedule as editor was not easy but I persevered. Fortunately for me, I was privileged to have professors and lecturers that were not interested in elongating the official time for my programme.
The Dean, School of Communication Studies, LASU, Prof Rotimi Olatunji and eminent Prof Lai Oso, my father-like supervisor and other senior members of faculty made it clear to us that the number of years to spend depended solely on us. I was determined to finish at Record Time.
I left Punch after six years of editing Saturday Punch. At the time, it was already three years into my programme and I was about to embark on my field work. So, I had enough time to do that and every other thing required for my research work.
Then Covid struck. But in spite of this and ASUU strike at one point or the other in LASU, my lecturers kept to their word. They were always available and they made sure that this came to pass. I am very grateful to them all.
My profoud thanks go to my wonderful husband, who has remained committed to my success and anything that makes me happy. I thank my children for always telling me how proud they are of me and everyone that contributed in one way or the other to my success. I am indeed grateful!
Today, you have the permission of the Board of the School of Postgraduate Studies, Lagos State University to call me Dr Olabisi Deji-Folutile.
Unto God alone be all the glory in Jesus name. Amen.