REPORT FOR THE IMMERSION PROGRAMME 2015 UNDERGONE AT THE UNIVERSITY OF BUEA FROM THE MONTH OF MARCH TO THE MONTH OF JUNE

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1 UNIVERSITY OF BUEA FACULTY OF ARTS DEPARTMENT OF ENGLISH IMMERSION PROGRAMME 2015 REPORT FOR THE IMMERSION PROGRAMME 2015 UNDERGONE AT THE UNIVERSITY OF BUEA FROM THE MONTH OF MARCH TO THE MONTH OF JUNE A document submitted to the English department of the University of Buea to attest a completed immersion programme and to serve as part of the requirements for the award of a Bachelor Degree of Bilingual Studies. Presented by: SAMUEL BABILA BENGALA (12K203). Supervised by: Dr KIWOH TERENCE NSAI School year:

2 REPORT FOR THE IMMERSION PROGRAMME 2015 SAMUEL BABILA BENGALA BILINGUAL STUDIES STUDENT AT THE UNIVERSITY OF YAOUNDE I

3 CERTIFICATION This is to certify that this work entitled REPORT FOR THE IMMERSION PROGRAMME 2015 UNDERGONE AT THE UNIVERSITY OF BUEA FROM THE MONTH OF MARCH TO THE MONTH OF JUNE, A document submitted to the English Department of the University of Buea to attest a completed immersion programme and to serve as part of the requirements for the award of Bachelor Degree in Bilingual Studies, is the original work of SAMUEL BABILA BENGALA (12k203). Signature... Dr. KIWOH TERENCE NSAI Supervisor Date...

4 DEDICATION I dedicate this work to my mother and to all the mothers of the world for the great support and love they give to their children.

5 ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I wish to thank profoundly Dr. KIWOH for his precious time and knowledge he has given for the realisation of this work. All the lecturers of the English Department of the University of Buea also deserve distinguished thanks. Special thanks to my father for having been there for counselling and for having put all the necessaries to see this work complete. I am grateful to my brothers and sisters who never ceased to give me their moral support all along this immersion programme. Finally, I cannot go without thanking my friends and classmates for having provided a favourable environment to do this work.

6 TABLE OF CONTENTS Certification...ii Dedication...iii Acknowledgement...iv Table of contents...v List of illustration...viii List of abbreviation...ix Background...x General introduction...xii CHAPTER 1: IMMERSION PROGRAMME: PRESENTATION OF THE SITE AND PREPARATION TOWARDS THE PROGRAMME...4 I- Presentation of Buea General presentation History of the town Geography and climate Buea the touristic town...5 a- The Mount...6 b- The monument of Reunification...6 c- Von Puttkamer s manor...6 d- A chain of quality hostels...7 II- Preparations In the University of Yaoundé I In the family Psychological preparation...8

7 III- Departure and settling A long but fascinating journey from Yaoundé Arrival and accommodation...9 CHAPTER 2: LIFE IN THE UNIVERSITY OF BUEA...11 I- Presentation of the UB...11 II- Life in the University of Buea Orientation day Contact with lecturers...14 III- Out of hall experiences Visit to Curelf Conference with the Australian High Commissioner Conference for the celebration of World Press Freedom day Seminar on managing available chemical and technological resources for successful emergence by CHAPTER 3: FIELD WORK Presentation of CRTV Southwest regional station Daily experience at CRTV Knowledge acquired Some recommendations to the structure...26 CHAPTER 4: SOCIAL EXPERIENCE...27 I- In students residential area...27 II- Out of Buea experiences...28

8 1- Visit to IRAD of Ekona Time spent in Mutengene Visit paid to Bwando Village...29 III- National day celebration...30 CHAPTER 5: DIFFICULTIES AND RECOMMENDATIONS...32 I- Difficulties On the UB Campus In social context...32 II- Recommendations The frame time increase Preparing lodgings for students Making the immersion programme to cover all levels...33 General conclusion...35 References...36

9 LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS Fig.1: locational maps of Buea- Cameroon. Fig.2: The monument of Reunification. Fig.3: Von Puttkamer s manor. Fig.4: The entrance to the University of Buea Fig.5: Defending my point of view in the debate during the seminar. Fig.6: Standing with the Head of Mount Cameroon FM and my mates Fig.7: UB students parading.

10 LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS UB- University of Buea Curelf : Centre universitaire de recherche en langue française. VC: Vice-Chancellor. ERuDeF: Environment and Rural Development Foundation. IRAD: Research Institute in Agriculture for Development. CDC: Cameroon Development Cooperation. FETCOM: Foundation Education Trust Complex. GTHS: Government Technical High School. GTC: Government Technical College. CRTV: Cameroon Radio and Television.

11 BACKGROUND At the dawn of independence, Cameroon was immediately faced with the problem of reunification of both parts that constituted it, Francophone Cameroon and Anglophone Cameroon. In 1972, the leaders of both parts decided to put an end to the Federal republic that was instituted at independence, and come together to form the Republic of Cameroon. This brought joy in many hearts but did not solve all the problems of the country. Being united was an extraordinary thing but there was still the linguistic wall to break down as both citizens could not understand each other. In an attempt to resolve this problem, the government took some resolutions like creating some bilingual training schools in charge of training perfectly bilingual Cameroonians which were highly needed in the new born country. One of the most prominent resolutions was that a Department of Bilingual Studies should be created at the University of Yaoundé. And a programme was put in place in that department to enable its students to grasp the culture and language use of their second language society. Hence, at the third level of studies, students with an Anglophone background and reading bilingual studies were sent to France while their Francophone counterparts were sent to England. After forty year, this programme was stopped in the 1990 s with the economic crisis that hit Cameroon. Now, with the creation of other state universities, and since the programme could not be suspended, the University of Yaoundé-now changed to the University of Yaoundé I-had a new agreement with the Higher Teachers Training College(ENS) 1 of Bambili to continue with the immersion programme. At this time, students from a Francophone background underwent their immersion programme in Bambili and their Anglophone counterparts experienced it in Yaoundé. This second agreement also was ended in 2009 and gave room to the current agreement between the University of Yaoundé I and the University of Buea. Presently, just as it was done with the ENS of Bambili, students are switched between both universities where they are followed-up as they mingle academically and socially with the people of the host region. After I graduated from high school, my application to the Department of Bilingual Studies in the Faculty of Arts in the University of Yaoundé I was accepted. It was a great moment of my life because I knew I was going to study what I cherish and more my English 1 ENS means Ecole Normale Superieur in French. The official name is in French so we often give the translation but retain the French official initials.

12 language skills will be improved. I never had the chance of coming in close touch with the English language as I could only speak it in school with my secondary school English teachers. Now I had a possibility to dwell with the language. It was until my second year in the University of Yaoundé I that I heard about the immersion programme we were to undergo the following year that is this year 2015, in Buea. As soon as I could, I informed my parents of it and they in return found it interesting. As the end of that academic year (2013/2014) came, I immediately started getting myself ready for the immersion programme. I started doing some little paid jobs in other to buy some novels and other books which I read to enrich my vocabulary and to develop my skills. By the time the first semester of this school year ended, I had read a good number of books and watch some films but I still found it difficult to apply what I had read because French was the language I constantly used. Now, when the month of March, 2015 came, it also brought the time for us to enter the train of immersion in which will developed our English significantly.

13 GENERAL INTRODUCTION This piece of work is concerned with relating some of the experiences I had, the ones I judge the most interesting and important, during the period of the immersion programme. The experiences are of two major types, the one I had within the university campus which I have termed academic experiences and the one I had out of the campus that I refer to as social experiences. The work is made up of five chapters; the first chapter talks about the presentation of the site and the preparation of the immersion programme, the second talks of life in the University of Buea or the academic experiences; the third is on the field work that I undertook, while the fourth is on my social life in Buea and finally the fifth outlines some of the difficulties I encountered and gives some recommendations for the programme. Each of these chapters has its subtopics to better highlight their contents.

14 CHAPTER 1 IMMERSION PROGRAMME: PRESENTATION OF THE SITE AND PREPARATION TOWARDS THE PROGRAMME Introduction The site for the immersion programme is a town called Buea. The town presents many features that let it be an attractive place. Though as such, it was a strange place to me so I had to prepare accordingly for the purpose. I- Presentation of Buea 1- General presentation Buea is one of the two Anglophone towns of Cameroon which is situated at the foot of Mount Cameroon, an active volcano, with 1000 metres of altitude. It is the capital of the South West Region of the country and located at 80km from Douala, that is approximately 1h30 minutes drive towards Limbe. At the 2005 census, it was recorded that the town had a population of inhabitants. But this number must have increased since the population since that year has significantly increased. 2- History of the town Buea was the name of a Bakweri village which stood at the very site as the town today. The German colonial administration, attracted by the strategic position of the town and mostly by its moderate climate, lunched a military campaign in 1891 to occupy the village. That first campaign was a failure and it was till 1894 that the colonial power succeeded to settle at the feet of Mount Fako. The town was then made the colonial capital of the German Kamerun from 1949 until The German colonial administration in Buea was temporally suspended during the eruption of Mount Cameroon from 28 th April till June Originally, the population of Buea, that is the natives, is consisted mainly of the Bakweri people. But due to its position as a host for a state university and the regional capital for the South West Region, there are many other ethnic groups which have settled in Buea.

15 3- Geography and climate Because of its location at the foot of Mount Cameroon, the climate in Buea tends to be humid. The neighbourhood at higher elevations enjoy colder temperatures while the lower neighbourhoods experience less cold temperatures. During the rainy season the people experience very long days of rainfall, characterized by increasing drizzle, which can last for weeks. Also common at this period are damp fogs; all these elements cause the rolling of the mountain into the town below. Due to its proximity to an active mountain, the soil of Buea is blackish and very fertile; that is why one economic activity in the town is agriculture. The ground is mainly constituted with stone mostly derived from the solidification of magma during the volcanic eruption. As you enter the town, the more you go forward the more you climb. This is because the more you go in the town you go closer to the mount; hence the relief of the town is mountainous. Fig.1: Location maps of Buea- Cameroon (from Google.com) 4- Buea the touristic town. Apart from being a historic town of Cameroon, Buea is also a town that present a good number of attractive sites. Many tourists come to the town each year either for research or to visit some of the remarkable places that Buea offers.

16 a- The Mountain Mount Cameroon is the number one element that attracts many tourists. It is one of the most important mounts in Africa with its 1000 meters of altitude. The particularity of that mountain is that it shelters some rare botanic items like trees. It is believed in the local culture that there are some fruits on the mountain that if one tries to harvest and take it down, this one will not find his way until he gets rid of it. They say you must eat the fruit up there and come down just as you went. The people used to sacrifice albinos on the mountain when they noticed the first signs of eruption. They believed that they were some gods in the mountain and that it was their anger that caused the eruption; hence the albinos were sacrifice like a sign of reconciliation. b- The Reunification Monument The Reunification Monument is an edifice that is in the heart of Buea. It is located by the governor s office. It was built in 2013 for the celebration of the 50 th anniversary of the Reunification of the two parts which once formed the Federal Republic of Cameroon. It was in 1972 that the Francophone Cameroon and the Anglophone Cameroon came together to form the actual Republic of Cameroon hence. Fig.2: The Reunification Monument. c- Von Puttkamer s manor The house is a historic site. It was the residential manor of the German colonial governor Jesko Von Puttkamer. The house has been used by various German governors from 1901 to

17 1919. Today, the house is the patrimony of the Cameroonian State. This fortress attracts by its beauty and its might. It stands remarkably among other houses which are not similarly built. Fig.3: Von Puttkamer s house. d- A chain of quality hostels Buea as a touristic town is prepared for the lodging of its visitors no matter their social rank. For that reason, the town has a good number of inns and hotels of diverse standings to host all the tourists. Some of the most remarkable hotels are Paramount Hotel, ETA Palace, Mountain Hotel, Mermoz Hotel, Chariot Hotel, etc. II- Preparations In everything we do in life everything we strive for, if we want to see success, we must prepare. Some call it planning others projecting but the result is the process is the same, you carry on activities that will later on facilitate the process of what you head to do. Since there was an immersion programme to be organized by the school for my parents to sponsor and for me to follow, each of us started working towards it doing all the necessary activities. 1- Preparation in the University of Yaoundé 1 Classes in the Department of Bilingual Studies, under the Faculty of Arts, Letters and Social Sciences of the University of Yaoundé I, started exactly in the month of September mostly for the level three students. The department put all in place so that our courses be as serious as

18 never, the time frame was highly observed. Lecturers were constantly present in class. The lecturers put in more to make us get used to the language. They started to prepare us psychologically through advice. The most interesting is that they prepared us to hard work so as to better stand the change of University system. Our examinations were followed closely and the results did not take a long time to be published. After the results, the staff of our department worked restlessly to deliver the final lists of the students who were to undergo the immersion programme. After that the lists were published, they spontaneously organized a meeting with all the Level 3 student of the department, to give them the moral support and some counsel on life and living in Buea. Also, they had contacted some landlords in Buea to try to have some rooms ready for some of us who did not have relatives or had not yet located a room. At the end, some lecturers willingly took the responsibility of collecting funds from students in other to hire a bus and to take us to Buea so as to let us enter our new town with enthusiasm. 2- Preparation in the family Although I had told my family since the second year when it came to my knowledge about the trip in Buea for immersion, things at the last minute did not go smoothly. Due to some difficulties, it was not so easy for my parents to get the money for my room here in Buea. This was more difficult due to the fact that they had already spend a lot for my room in Yaoundé and it was a real blow for them to have to undergo double expenditure in the same year. However, they succeeded in preparing a room for me which I gladly appreciated. The most useful role they played was supporting me morally. I was very scared of the idea of going to live in a strange town and where I knew no one but they helped me to overcome this phobia. At the end before I left Yaoundé, although we do not live together, a special prayer was organized to commit me and all my mates and our education in the hands of our God. 3- Psychological preparation Since my tender childhood shyness has never gone a single mile from me. As any timid person, I often find it very difficult to interact with unknown people and having to travel and dwell in a town I knew nothing about more than the name was a serious difficulty for me. However, these last minutes were not so difficult since I had started meditating on the issue since my second year. I had made up my mind to learn to interact with people, and I quite started

19 exercising myself, if not I will come back from Buea as I went. So in other to succeed in my immersion, I threw away the garment of shyness and embraced socialisation. III- Departure and settling After a long process of preparation in the University and mostly in the family and within ourselves, I and my classmates finally had to take our way to Buea, the town supposed to be our host for the following months. 1- A long but fascinating journey from Yaoundé It was under the freshness of a Tuesday of March, the 17 th of this year 2015 that I closed my bags and left my room towards Nsam 2. It was 09.15am when the bus in which we were sitting started groaning as it advanced slowly out of the travel agency then out of Yaoundé. As we went out of Yaoundé, out of the congested and noisy city, I started feeling the rebirth of my cells. I could taste the freshness of pure air as we travelled through the villages and forests along the way to Douala. My spirit and my whole senses joined the leaves and trees which were dancing at the rhythm of the wind, I merely retained myself from flying to these sweet bushes; I was in a jocund company. The journey was long but very exciting as it put me, although for a short time, in contact of nature. Now, when we arrived to Douala we stood at the agency to get some passengers having the southwest as destination afterwards we continued our journey. When we crossed the bridge on the Wouri River and travel along the way to Bekoko 3, there started another interesting part of the journey as I could see some places I just knew by name. The first was the Mongo River afterwards Tiko, Mutengene, etc. We finally arrived to Mile Buea around 5pm. 2- Arrival and accommodation As we arrived to Mile 17 bus station where everyone was dropped, my worries were not yet over; I had to find my way to Paramount hotel and to the room that awaited me. With less difficulties, I found my way and took a taxi that dropped me just in front of Paramount hotel 2 A quarter of Yaoundé in which most buses loading for Douala and other towns are located. 3 A suburban area where the central road from Douala divides into two, that which goes to the West region then that which goes to the South West region 4 A quarter at the entrance of Buea where passengers going into the town are dropped so that they can take a taxi to their destination

20 where I then called the caretaker of the building in which my room was taken. Luckily he was a nice person and who is also a student at the UB. He welcomed me and helped me to carry some of my loads and we went homewards. When we arrived the building, he handed to me the keys to my room and in other to help me familiarize with other neighbours, he presented me to those who were around and told them the purpose of my coming to Buea. They were all happy and proposed to be of help to me. After the interaction with my new neighbours, I then retired into my room to unpack and tidy it. Conclusion The preparations were not easy at all level because many things were to enter into consideration at this level. However, my family and I succeeded in making it go smoothly. My journey was enjoyable; and Buea is so beautiful that easily forgot about my phobias when I took contact with the place.

21 CHAPTER 2 ACADEMIC EXPERIENCES Introduction Buea was the hosting town for our immersion programme since we were to live there for the following months but our real host was the University of Buea. Though we had to acquire some knowledge out there in the society, the university was the most important in our programme. I- Presentation of the University of Buea In 1992/93 a series of presidential decrees transformed the Higher Education landscape profoundly by dissolving the University of Yaoundé and creating six new universities. Decree No. 92/074 of 13 April 1992 transformed the university centres of Buea and Ngaoundere into fully-fledged universities. The University of Buea is in the historic town of Buea, former capital of German Kamerun, former capital of the federated State of West Cameroon and now the Regional capital of the South West region of Cameroon. Despite the economic crisis facing the country in the early 90s, the University of Buea started off boldly in May 1993 with 768 students enrolled in the Advanced School of Translators and Interpreters (ASTI) and the following three faculties: The Faculty of Arts with degree programmes in English, English and French, and History; The Faculty of Science with programmes in Chemistry, Life Sciences, Geology, Physics and Mathematics; The Faculty of Social and Management Sciences with programmes in Economics, Law and Geography. Academic staff was transferred from the defunct University of Yaoundé and the Ministry of Scientific Research to run these programmes. Part-time lecturers from the University of Yaoundé I were also used extensively. Even though the Faculty of Health Sciences existed in 1993, it only admitted its first batch of students in 1997/1998. The Department of Education

22 operated in the Faculty of Arts until the 1998/1999 year when it became an independent Faculty. The UB, like all the state universities, functions mostly with funds from the government and the registration fees of students which represents just about 35% of its annual budget. The UB actually has 35 lecture halls with sitting places which vary from 50 to 650. The university also has six science teaching laboratories and a central library. Nowadays, the University of Buea is made up of seven faculties (Engineering, Arts, Education, Health Sciences, Science, Social and Management Sciences, Agriculture and Veterinary medicine) and two professional schools, the Advanced School of Translators and Interpreters (ASTI), and the College of Technology (COT). Each faculty has a number of departments which are in charge of one or more academic programme. Fig.4: The entrance to the University of Buea II- Life in the University of Buea 1- Orientation day As we arrived for our very first time in the University, we had right to an orientation day which was held on Tuesday, 26 th March At this great day, all the immersion students both from Yaoundé and Buea and the various lecturers met at Amphitheatre 250 for a slight discussion. The meeting started at 1pm after all the various participants starting from students to the Dean of the faculty of arts had taken their various sits.

23 The first person to speak, who by the way convened the meeting, was the coordinator of the immersion programme in Buea, Dr Eunice Fonyuy Fombele. She started by welcoming all the students in the immersion programme 2015, to the UB and to Buea. She urged us to remain focused on our task as we enjoy the town of Buea. She gave us words of encouragement as our immersion is concerned before leaving the floor to the Dean of the Faculty of Arts. The Dean of the Faculty of Arts welcomed us in what he called "second space" before continuing. The "first space" is the one we have left in Yaoundé and the "third space" is more psychological, it is the essence of our being in the immersion programme. He went further exhorting us to let the immersion programme to pass through us and not only us passing through it. Because if we pass through it we may be unchanged but if it passes through us, we shall never be the same. Also he told us to make the classroom our second room; hence if we are not at home studying we should be in the classroom because our being in Buea is not for holidays but for serious studies. After that brilliant speech from the Dean, some of the lecturers gave us information on the rules and regulations of the UB: - Classes To attend classes at the UB you have to be registered and this is certified when you have submitted the Form B at the secretariat of the department. Also, class attendance is compulsory and for that reason there is an attendance list at the end of each class. Therefore, if a student attends less than 70% of classes then you shall simply be cancelled from graduation. - Late coming In the UB time is highly considered and consequently very respected. No late coming is tolerated. The lecturers are free to let you out of the class when s/he is already in the class. Students must therefore learn to be on time in class. - Examination Examinations are done according to a scheduled programme. As far as it is concerned, students are highly recommended to be at the examination hall 30minutes before the

24 examination. Also, it is highly prohibited to come to the examination hall with phones. Doing that may lead to heavy sanctions and a dismissal from the University. There exist form of examinations; the first is the continuous assessment (CA) which comes within the sem ester and the final examination that comes at the end of the semester. The CA counts for 30% of the final marks and the final examination counts for 70%. - Records The UB functions on credits and every course represents 60 credits. At the end of each examination, calculations are done to issue the result of students. If a student does not have a mark on a subject, he will simply be disqualified. In the case a student has a problem with his marks or his name he is expected to submit a request that shall be examined closely by the right organ. Marks are graded from A to F, with A being the highest mark and F the lowest. - Dressing code A great emphasis is laid on dressing. As a student you should be decently dressed before entering the campus. Your dressing should not be exorbitant rather it should be simple and clean. For this reason the security agents at the gate are assigned to stop students who are not appropriately dressed. - Students-lecturers relationship It is an obligation for students to know their lecturers by name. The relationship between students and their lecturers should rely on respect and obedience; hence they should not be rude with their lecturers or with any other person. In the end, when all the preceding were said we were warned to watch out the churches we attended in Buea. There exist a multitude of churches in Buea some of which are very doubtful. 2- Contact with lecturers Contrary to our fears, all the lecturers were very welcoming. We were afraid of having lecturers who are not patient or who do not bear the fact that our language abilities were not good; but we turned out to face the very contrary. All the lecturers were very kind; they were all ready to give us as much of their time as possible to help we improve. In class, they created an

25 atmosphere in which everyone was at ease. In the end our satisfaction was so high that we all wished either to take them along with us to Yaoundé or to stay with lecturers in Buea because we had become so friendly to them. III- Out of hall experiences Although it was compulsory to be in class, it was also important to get some out of hall contact with other students from Buea. For the purpose, I visited with my friends some institutions under the University or attended any conference or seminar which our time table permitted us to. 1- Visit to Curelf Just the first week we started classes at the UB, the coordinator of Curelf came to us to let us know the existence of this centre and we immediately agreed on a day we had to visit the place. Commonly known as Alliance Franco-camerounaise, Curelf is an annex of the UB where research and teaching on the French language are done. The day we agreed on was the 08 th April, On this day, we mobilized ourselves and went to the centre where the coordinator had been waiting us. When we came, he was so happy to see us and he personally took charge of presenting all the corners of the place to us. But before that he called all the staff working there and presented us to them and vice versa. After that we started our visit. One interesting thing we immediately noted was that the staffs were mostly Anglophones or bilinguals. The first place we visited was the library. Although the centre is meant for French, the library is bilingual. The books are classified in ranges according to the categories, the languages; there are reading sits and tables for those who may wish to read and a register to fill for those who may wish to take along a book. To enter the library of Curelf and benefit some facilities they offer, one must have a membership card that is issued yearly. As we were to spend just a short moment in Buea, we were granted membership cards at 500 fcfa. The second place we visited was the hall where film projections and various ceremonies are done. It is a hall with a well decorated podium with curtains to close and open in case of drama representation. There is also a backroom where actors can wait for their turns. The sitting places are divided into two, the

26 upper sits and the down sits, the total of which are around 150. There is also a technical booth in between the two sitting compartments where or programming and projections are done. After the film hall, we went to visit the restaurant that is still on construction where we had some funny interaction with the builders. After the restaurant we were shown the outside stage were most youth activities like dancing show, musical concerts, etc are done. The next place we set our feet on after that was the well kept garden where we could sit on the built sits before continuing our interaction. While sitting in the garden, some questions came up from the observation of some artistic work along the centre. The coordinator then explained to us that there are some clubs under Curelf like the artistic club, the French club, the dancing club where young people come together and share their talents and passion. In the end, we went into his office where our interaction continued and before we separate, he offered some books to some of us. We departed from there very happy because we had agreed with the coordinator that we should have an English film projection one Saturday in a fourth night that would help us to entertain ourselves and to be in contact with the native English language. 2- Conference with the Australian High Commissioner for Nigeria and Cameroon The conference with the Australian High Commissioner for Nigeria and Cameroon took place on April 28, 2015 at the Dorothy Njeuma Amphitheatre of the University of Buea. It started at 10:30am and was chaired by the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Buea, the Dr Nalova Lyonga. All expectations were fulfilled since students came in great numbers. The activities started by an introductive speech from the VC. She greeted the High Commissioner, Mr Jonathan Richardson, all the guests and all the students, thanking each of them for being present. Speaking on studies, she said that we often focus on studies in Western countries and forgetting about the rich and interesting Australia. She clearly underlined that it is a rare opportunity to have the Australian High Commissioner to speak on such occasion; it was quite the first time to host him in the UB. And there is so much to gain as concerning this conference mostly on studies in Australia. Se ended by advising all the students present in the hall to be silent and attentive. After that the VC had given her speech, a little profile of the High Commissioner was made by Dr Andrew Molingo, the director in charge of student affairs and the moderator of the

27 conference. He gave a summary of Mr Richardson s profile. He had a Master s Degree in Business Management in London University. In his professional career, he has served as a diplomat for his country; he has also worked in the department of foreign affairs of Australia and he has been a high commissioner of Australia in London, today he is the high commissioner for Nigeria and Cameroon. After this brief presentation, the floor was now given to the man in question. Mr Richardson began to give his speech. He started by giving a background of Australia. Australia is a federation of 06 states which have a total of 250 languages. They are a mixed population in which 48% are born out of Australia. The population is dominantly immigrants from Egypt, Vietnam, etc. The federation has 10% of the world s bio-diversity. Now talking on education, he said Australia massively exports education because many foreign students go to study there; for that reason, they occupy the fourth position of the classification of countries having international students. Also, they have 5 top-ranked universities in the world. About their foreign policy, Australia has friendship with Western countries like the United States of America, the United Kingdom, etc. They also have commercial partnership with some European countries. They collaborate with African countries like Cameroon where they have two companies and where a new consulate was opened last year in Yaoundé. After his seductive expose, Mr Richardson through his assistant with whom he came now offered a projection of a video of the riches Australia offers. After that, the floor was given for questioning. Many students asked their questions and received suitable answers to their question. In the end, a general picture was taken with the VC, the High Commissioner, the various guests and some students to eternalize the day. I left the hall happy because I came to listen for the first time the Australian variety of English language. 3- Conference for the celebration of the Press Freedom day Although the world press day is celebrated worldwide on May 3 rd, the conference for the celebration of press freedom was held on Tuesday, 5 th May 2015 on the theme "let journalism thrive towards better reporting, gender equality safety and digital age". The conference took place in front of the Department of Mass Communication of the UB and invited to the conference were Mr Paul Kode and Mrs Manka a Ambe, all both important figures in the domain

28 of communication. They kept everyone present at the conference alert by their amazing and highly inspiring speeches. From their various argumentations, I could get that freedom is a state of mind; therefore there is nowhere to go and look for it. Also, I could understand that freedom goes with responsibility. All journalists must learn to be responsible because with their pen and paper they can cause more destruction than can a wildfire just as they can build towers on a swampy ground. That is why a good journalist must say things the way they are using the appropriate words. And s/he should never forget that journalism is simply linked to ethics and karma 5. It also came to my understanding that the journalist is a creator just as God. The only difference is that God is the macrocosm and the journalist is the microcosm. The conference went on interestingly, and at the end everyone departed very satisfied. 4- Seminar on managing available chemical and technological resources for successful emergence by 2035, on the 19 th May at the Dorothy Njeuma Amphitheatre. The seminar was organized by the students association of the Faculty of Science of the UB under the distinguished patronage of the Vice-chancellor of the University of Buea. Some institutions were invited to this seminar to counsel and educate students; among these we had ERuDeF, BIO PHARMACAM SARL, and IRAD. The seminar started a bit later than programmed so the MC first apologized for that inconvenient before opening the floor to the first participant. The first participant at the conference was Mr Shei-Jini, a motivational speaker. He started his outstanding and enlightening speech by a great citation that: «Success is a journey not a destination». This means that, as he explained, success is a constant quest because when you achieve one thing, you see the need of achieving more important ones. According to him, technology is the act of self-discipline that is why most disciplined people are successful. And the most important element of self-discipline is time management. In managing our time we become very productive but in doing that we should be should be proactive, that is we should prepare ahead of time. We cannot emerge without vision therefore we should create solutions before time to achieve our dream. 5 (In Buddhism and Hinduism) the sum of somebody s good and bad actions in one of their lives, believed to decide what will happen to them in the next life. Also, it is the good/bad effect of doing a particular thing, being in a particular place, etc.

29 He went further saying that the problem with most Africans is that they have transformed life to a money making industry. They no more use their knowledge to meet the social demand. This is because most people rush after money and end up not loving their job because it is not their vocation. We need to reprogram our mind to serve our fellow in our job, to think, plan and innovate instead of deceiving ourselves with the love for money. He ended by giving an advice to all the students present at the seminar that they should connect themselves to the right people in other to improve. Afterwards he presented his book, Work, a Devine Responsibility that threats issues of working to serve. The second speaker was Mr Tsimo Bertrand Sancho, the public relation officer for ERuDeF who spoke on behalf of the director of the institute. He said that ERuDeF is a non-profit professional and research management training institution dedicated to providing leading edge and holistic training in research and environmental management to future cream of sustainable development leaders. It conducts research that contributes to the sustainable development and management of the Cameroon s biodiversity in partnership with other national and international universities, conservation and development organizations. He was followed by the representatives from BIO PHARMACAM SARL, who all presented their organization and some facilities they offer to the general public. They all ended by exhorting students to try to innovate. After these brilliant speeches came the turn of the director of IRAD-Ekona, Dr Etchu Kingsley. He spoke on the participation of IRAD to make our country emergent by He started by giving the missions of IRAD: - Carrying out research - Developing scientific and technological capacities that meet the national demand. - Making available the seeds. The most important part of the institute is its laboratory where all the experiments are carried out. IRAD develops and distributes in every region the crops that are best fitted to their soil and the dominant climate. It is important to underline that when the laboratory releases a product, there exist a department that first test the product before distributing it to the public. Finally, IRAD deals with companies such as CDC and individual farmers. Most important, IRAD trains students who come in for internship.

30 After the director of IRAD spoke about their participation to make Cameroon emergent by 2035, came the presentation of a project. The project was from a student of the UB who has worked on using excrements of animals and men to produce the biogas. This gas can be use to meet domestic needs such as cooking, warming, etc. He also said we could use even domestic refuse which we ferment and obtain biogas. The particularity of this type of gas is that it is economical since the raw materials are just around us it does not pollute the environment. The seminar went on educating all the participants and mostly students. In the end there was a debate on the theme "students should spend their entire time in their study and not have part time jobs". I took part in this debate supporting the thesis. It was so interesting to stand in front of a crowd and speak to defend my thesis. To close the ceremony, participants received certificates before departing for refreshment. Fig. 5: Defending my point of view in the debate during the seminar. Conclusion The UB is a well structured and organized and institution where everyone knows his position and where all is respected. We noticed this the very first week and we found it a real place to be.

31 CHAPTER 3 FIELD WORK Introduction We spent the majority of our time in UB where we received lectures. But as part of our immersion process, we were assigned to supervisors who were to redirect us in some institutions where we were to interact with people and have some professional skills. It is in this process of distribution that I found myself spending a three week internship at CRTV-Buea 1- Presentation of CRTV Southwest regional station CRTV is a major radio and television service in Cameroon. It is a government-controlled service in the country. It initially started as Cameroon Television (CTV) and it later merged with the radio service to become CRTV. It covers all the ten regions of Cameroon with a branch in each of them, rendering it the indomitable broadcaster amongst a number of private television stations in the country. In the context of the immersion programme, I did my internship in one of the branches of the national station: the station CRTV-Buea. CRTV-Buea was as its name says is the South-West branch of CRTV which was created in The station was first known as a branch of the Nigeria Broadcasting Service when that part of Cameroon was still governed together with Nigeria under the German colonial authority. After the colonial era, that is after the separation with Nigeria the station became simply known as Radio-Buea. It was until 1987 that with the creation of the national station it was transformed to CRTV-Buea. This is an institution which has two separate services, the radio service called Mount Cameroon fm and the television service. These two services work however in collaboration and under the head office of Yaoundé. Although the two services are separated, they still have a linkage since there is a Branch Manager who is ahead of both service and the positions are distributed as shown in the organizational chart below:

32 The Organizational Chart

33 2- Daily experiences at CRTV South West We first went- my co-interns and me- to the station of CRTV Buea on the Wednesday, 22 nd April, Although we were welcomed by the Head of station, we did not start our internship on that day. Because we were to be separated into two groups so that one will work at the regional station while the other will be assigned to Mount Cameroon FM. However, we could on this day visit the some places in the structure. Mostly, we visited Mount Cameroon FM for the first time, and where I was later on appointed to do my internship. It was on the 27 th of that very month that our internship really started. Since the list which assigned us to our various areas was out, we directly went to our various places. I was assigned to follow our internship at Mount Cameroon FM. Hence we therefore departed for the place. Mount Cameroon fm is the radio station of CRTV Buea, its frequency is Fm 98.6 and its slogan is Top of the Waves. Although it is located in the same place with the regional TV station, Mount Cameroon is totally independent from this last one. It was created in the year 2000, when Pr. Gervais Mendoze was still the General Manager (GM) of CRTV. At its creation, Mount Cameroon FM had four services: - The news and programmes service - The copy right service - Technical service - Commercial service. The first person appointed as the head of Mount Cameroon fm was a woman named Philomène Nwalle Galeine who was assisted by Jomo Kelvin. From her till date, the organization has had five different heads, among which Lazare Etoundi, Djomo Kelvin, Gofake Leonard Chatelin who is the actual head. Actually, the station has a total of 11 staff members among which there are 05 Francophone and then 06 Anglophones. In the radio, 70% of the programmes are produced in English while 30% are in French. We were warmly welcomed as we arrived at the radio station and we were invited to join the staff meeting at their conference hall. We were presented to the various staff and vice versa. They welcomed us and assured us that we can count on them to help us when the need arises.

34 After the meeting, the Head of station called us for a brief interview. He first underlined to us that we were not there as student journalists so we were not to expect any follow-up from them. Rather, we should mingle with the staff and listen the way they use the English language. He also warned us about forbidden area like the cabin and all technical areas and we should make sure to be out of the station office before 7pm. Finally, he exhorted us to be friendly with the staff and never to touch anything without prior permission. One of the days of our being there, we were lucky after the general meeting they hold everyday to have an audience with Mr Gofake Leonard Chatélin. He is a holder of a Master s Degree in Political Sciences and has done much internship in and out the country-mostly in France where he has had a lot of experience. He was appointed to Mount Cameroon some four years ago. He explained to us that the radio is a proximity one and that the targeted population are the youths of within the age frame of He took example of himself to tell us that we need to love our profession. For that reason, he even said that he found CRTV so kind because he has fun and he is paid for that. In other words, his job is so simple for him that he does not feel it as a burden. But you can only love your job if it is your vocation. For that reason, he gave us a practical way of detecting your vocation. To detect your talent or your vocation, you should go back to your parents and try to find out the types of activities you use to enjoy doing in your childhood. Although you may detect your talent, it is not sufficient because to succeed you must follow quality training. He ended by advising us to try to detect our talents and try right now to forge ourselves to what we will like to be tomorrow. We were also honoured in the course of our internship to have a discussion with Mr Kolle Georges, a pioneer of the Mount Cameroon FM, a man I used to hear the voice over the radio back in my childhood. Mr Kolle has been in the station since the year 2000 and ran the widely know programme "Make we talk". It is a programme which treated of social issues through the code of Pidgin English. Later on in 2002, he witnessed his first appointment at the newly created production service. In 2006, he was now sent to the animation service. It is in that year that the FM switched from his status of commercial radio to his present status of proximity radio. Hence they started going down to quarters, close to people to get information rather than waiting for the people to bring their information and money as they did before. Although Mr Kolle has succeeded in his career, it has however not been without difficulties. The most important of his

35 difficulties has been the fact of not having the working equipments matching with his qualification. Another great difficulty has been to conceptualize some English terms in Pidgin English for his programme "Make we talk". As his success as a journalist is concerned, that was favoured by many key elements. The first key element in his entire life is God. Afterwards comes passion, hard work, a lot of reading and mostly training. To him training seems to come after God because back in secondary school, there was no indication of him as a journalist. He studied motor mechanic at GTHS-OMBE which was at that time GTC OMBE. It was later on that he wrote the Ordinary and Advance levels examination and entered to the university before taking serious trainings mostly out of Cameroon like in Australia. Now, Mr Kolle is highly respected in the radio as he appears like the mascot of the Mount Cameroon FM On our final day, we still had a brief with the staffs that were present. After the general assembly as was done every day we reminded them of our departure. They all felt so sad that we were leaving so soon. However, they did not fail to give us counsels. In turn, they gave us words of encouragement always ending by encouraging us to dare use the English language and not be afraid of mistakes. After that we took some pictures with them to immortalize the day and our passing there. Fig.7: Standing with the Head of Mount Cameroon FM and my mates

36 3- Knowledge acquired Our internship at CRTV although was short and limited because we were not professionals of the communication field, was an educative one. In the course of our being there, I happened to gain some knowledge. The first thing I understood was that in a radio station, the best organizing way is to have a daily meeting with the staff to share the work of the day; I learned that there is a periodical switch between journalists as far as writing and reading the news is concerned. Also I learned how to write a sample news cast. One of the days we were there, we went out for a vox pop so I also learned how to do that. 4- Some recommendations to the structure Although there is less to criticize in the organization, there are however some tiny recommendations one can make to the structure. The first thing is about the time. They hold their general assembly at 09 am. Considering that they will do at least 45min in the assembly, time will have considerably gone and that will make fewer jobs done. I therefore propose that they shift back their assembly at 08am so that they may spare one hour and that will help cover a good number of activities. The first thing I noticed when I came in contact with Buea is that the cultural device of the town is getting lost. People are more and more forgetting a culture that is not even known. I therefore suggest that they can come up with cultural programmes or documentaries which will uphold that culture. They can create a documentary in which they will invite some notable men of the culture to come and discuss the issue or they can go and record an interview with them. There is only one service vehicle of five places to serve the eleven staffs. This situation makes work to be very difficult as two people going to different destinations will get embarrassed. So they should look for a way to have more vehicles that will make them more prolific. Conclusion The field work at CRTV was a wonderful experience for me because I had the chance to witness some journalist practise and I learned some word of the journalistic jargon.

37 CHAPTER 4 SOCIAL EXPERIENCE Introduction Apart from the lectures and various experiences at the university campus and those of the field work, I had some experiences in the social context. I also had some other experiences out of my living area and even completely out of Buea. I- In students residential area Life in the students residential area is very busy and most of the time noisy. Molyko, the lieu par excellence of students residences, is a very hot place. Along the road, there seem to be everything one may need and that goes with exorbitant prices. With the neighbours who are mostly students, life is very smooth and communication effective. Students here are just like those in Yaoundé there is an inexplicable solidarity and fraternity for their fellow no matter where he comes from. This is because they know the difficulties a student often face. They quite understood my problem, the wish to mingle among them. I wanted to become an Anglophone not just by speaking the English language but by understanding and sharing their behaviour as long as I was there. My wish was granted by my neighbours. In mornings, I use to spend a lot of time with this one or that other neighbour speaking of very trivial issues but in the language of Shakespeare. I gradually saw my language skills gradually improving and for that my neighbours encouraged me a lot. Most of the time in the evening, we use to have a football match among boys. As football is the sport that builds up friendship, our simple neighbourhood was quickly transformed. As we became friends that gave us more topics to discuss about and I remember that we used to have a walk together with some of the boys of my residential compound. The mamys 6 here are very kind. They are very welcoming and polite. I cannot forget the day which I bypassed one mamy without greeting her and she stopped me and asked me if we had spent the night together or did I not know that it is bad to bypass people without greeting? I was very 6 A local name of any woman old enough to be a mother; or simply an appellation for an old woman

38 ashamed because I could not defend myself although until then I knew that I had no reason to greet a stranger. II- Out of Buea experiences In the course of our immersion, I did not limit myself to the host town. Rather, I grasped any little time and occasion I had to visit other places and institutions which are completely out of Buea and which are not known to everyone. 1- Visit to IRAD of Ekona In my stay in the South-West region for internship purposes in Buea, I did not limit myself to the town in which the University which hosted us was situated, because according to me an immersion takes place in a region and not in a single town of that region. So my trip to other localities started the Tuesday, 14 th April This faithful day, I had the profound joy to visit the IRAD of Ekona. The institution is located at about 45minutes drive from Buea. My passing here was quite amazing and instructive. Though I could not be received in any office or laboratory, I enjoyed the friendship and courtesy of the gardeners. The job of these men, as they themselves told me, is to experiment the products that are released from the laboratory and to serve customers who are sent from the commercial unit the successful products. They also explained to me that they always do grafting (a new word I learned there) of orange, grape and tangerine (an alternative name for mandarin oranges) were always done on lemon because this one is more resistant to elements and the roots are deeper in the ground. As I did not want to take too much of their precious time they use to help improve our food rate, our discussion lasted just for half an hour. While leaving, they crowned their kindness by offering me some gifts from their garden that I enjoyed so much back in my dwelling place. 2- Time spent in Mutengene Mutengene is a little town of more than inhabitants. It is the point where the route coming from Douala and passing through Tiko, divides in two, that which goes to Limbe and that which goes to Buea. Its population, for the majority, are workers of CDC and the rest live of little commerce and farming on small scale. I am fortunate to have a family there so it gave me the possibility to spend some time there and visit some remarkable places. In my staying there, I

39 could interact with neighbours, who were very willing to speak English language to a Francophone, mostly some teachers from FETCOM a school that lies behind the family house. In the evenings, I often took a walk in the street to observe how people with an Anglophone culture behaved and more how they interact. They were always available when they could for my questioning. Apart from discussing with our neighbours and walking on the streets of Mutengene, I also attended some sermons at the Presbyterian Church of the town. Here, it was not very fortunate for me because Pidgin English is the lingua franca 7 as there are some old people who attend the church who are unable to understand properly the English language; however, all readings from the Bible were done in English. 3- Visit paid to Boando Village As days went on, during my free time, I had the great chance to visit an extraordinary and unimaginable place: Bwando. This is a little village situated at about two hours drive from Buea. To get to this unknown world one goes by Mile Four Limbe and passes through respectively Wotutu, Bojongo, Ekondjo. This village has a population of about 35 people and most of them are old and the rest are children under twenty. This village is one of the numerous victims of rural exodus, all its young men have departed to towns and do not come back to put in practise what they have learned so as to develop their village. Although most of them only speak Pidgin English apart from their mother tongue, I yet found one who could speak English language with me. This people are very kind to strangers, one never goes there and returns empty. The village is surrounded by forests, houses are built in wood, what they call here in the public jargon carabote 8 and the soil there is wonderfully fertile. The English speaker I met there who was considered the most literate of the village told me that their village has a lot of young men out there who if they come together they can join to develop their village and remove it from the forest. Although he is also working in Limbe, as he said, he never misses to go to the village at least twice a week and he is doing all possible to built his house there so that he can settle in the village leaving everyday to the jobsite and back again. He is investing in farming so as to exploit the manure left by the remains of his fathers and to remove his village from bush. Our interaction lasted for a long while as we visited the village and some of the plantain 7 A common language used by people of diverse backgrounds to communicate with one and other. 8 A typical building style in the Bakweri tradition because they are men of the forest and they exploit all the riches of the forest.

40 plantations. When I was about to go back, the villagers gave me some plantains and other food items. I left the place so happy first because I discovered a part of my country that I could not imagine exists and second because I had really experienced the hospitality of the region right where no one could imagine. III- National day celebration As every 20 th day of the month of May, all Cameroonians commemorate the national unity day which took place on the 20 th May, This year s edition was the 43 rd and was celebrated under the theme: National forces and the vital forces acting together to meet up with security challenges and preserve peace and stability in Cameroon and Central Africa. Just as most people did, I and my friends and mates went to the stand of Bongo Square where various manifestations and parades of the town of Buea are done. We arrived to the place by 10am and although it was full with people, nothing was being done yet. It was until the arrival of the governor of the Southwest region that the national anthem was executed marking the beginning of activities. After the national anthem was executed, they started the military attribute. Some military officers were decorated with medals for the great services they have been rendering to the nation. While this was being done, one could notice some corps of the medical department of the army moving along and giving water and sugar to their colleagues who were on attention to enable them resist the burning sun. After the decoration of corps, various platoons retrieved to their base to prepare for the parade. The Army fanfare was the first to perform since they had to be playing while orders were to be performing. All the Army corps then started performing after them starting from the foot troops till the various military vehicles, passing through motorized troops and bicycle police officers. When the whole Army troops had performed, various schools immediately took over as their bands had also taken over to the Army. The schools performed in the order government primary schools followed by various private primary schools; then followed government secondary schools followed by private ones; and finally, came the University of Buea followed by various training institutions. I was

41 astonished by the performance of students of Rehabilitation Centre 9 who could maintain themselves on straight lines despite their condition. Also did I share the pain of the students from Saint Andrew Catholic School who paraded with their right hands on the chest to demonstrate their pain for losing their mate some days ago. After various schools and institutions, place was given to political parties. The respective militants paraded amazingly lifting joyfully their party flags to fly in the air. One intimidating thing during this was that while the other parties had merely had one hundred performers, CPDM came in with more than two thousand performers for its self alone. And they gave a gap of about twenty minutes between them and the other parties, an action which was not so warmly welcome in the crowd because I quite heard some grumbling. Some people judged that as a demonstration of supremacy since they often consider themselves as the "untouchables" of the country. The parade finally ended at 1.30pm afterwards followed the departure of various state and traditional authorities. After the way was clear, my friends and I after taking some pictures, took a taxi back home. Fig.8: UB students parading. Conclusion Despite the difficulties I had in mingling with some people, I found the social context of the places welcoming mostly those places which I visited out of Buea. 9 The Rehabilitation Centre is a centre for the blind, the deaf, and the dumb.

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