The atmosphere in the Nelson Mandella Hall UNIBEN, Ekehaun Campus  was electrifying as students listened with rapt attention to the wordsmith. With words laden with inspiration, the distinguished guest speaker charged the budding journalists like a General before his soldiers.
It was the Mass Communication Students’ Association (MACSA) seminar on campus held as the first event to mark the association’s week. The passionate and versatile speaker is the editor Weekend observer, Mr Osazua Ivbaze. He spoke on the seminar theme: Developing The You In You as a Media Practitioner.
Drawing from his wealth of experience as a Journalist, Mr Ivbaze challenged the students to be original, creative, skillful and resilient in their bid to becoming outstanding Journalists. He affirmed that “there is a vast dichotomy between the theoretical work in the classroom and the practical work in the field.
In his words, “You must be able to take the brush of your own imagination and create a masterpiece on the canvass of public expectation”. He further urged the students to maintain a commitment to hard work. “Read, read and read until you are tired. Write, write and write” he stressed.
He said that hard work would make them outstanding authorities in the field of Journalism. “Strive to be quoted one day” he challenged the young minds. He urged them to constantly carry out self-evaluation of themselves and invest in developing their mental capacity and communication skills.
The versatile speaker futher said that in order to be great media practitioners, they should have role models but should endeavor to surpass the achievement of their mentors. He stated “Believe in yourself. Don’t allow inferiority complex to limit you.”
On the performance of UNIBEN mass communication students in the SEWES program, he remarked that the University of Benin students have always demonstrated excellence and creativity in the Nigerian observer. He called on its sustenance.
Also present at the occasion was Dr. Wilfred Oyegun, an academic in the department of mass communication. The seminar was organized by the association as part of its week. Other events for the week included, old school day, traditional day and the dinner and award night.
The seminar may have rounded up but the words of the distinguished editor continue to linger in the hearts of the students- “Now is the time to take the brush of your own imagination and creativity and paint a masterpiece on the canvass of history”.
The Weekend Observer Editor charged the students to be bold and courageous and ensure that they constantly put on integrity as a badge.
He maintained that God created every man and woman and deposited in them certain potentials or gifts. He said it is left for everyone to develop these gifts for personal elevation and for the good of humanity.
“Try to be original and unique”. Don’t struggle to be like the other person because you are a uniquely designed potential”, he advised.
Speaking further he said “You can read others, have role models but try and try to develop yourself to the point that one day you too will become a role model to others. It is only when you are creative and have a sense of originality that you can create a difference.
“Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. It takes a baby 10-12 months to stand on its feet. The journey to the top, starts with one step.” He stressed.
Osazua Ivbaze spoke further “The topic, Developing the You in You as a media practitioner” is simply letting you know that in you are potentials. But the task is how these potentials can be developed so that you become useful to yourself and society. You have a great work to do. What we can do is to present you with ideas that would broaden your perspectives, help you to identify your strengths, energize your efforts and inspire you to change the world around you. “Maturity is being content to know that you are right without having to prove that someone else is wrong”.