States and nations are usually adjudged developed when in real terms, they can boast of citizens with viable skills to sustain their economic and social well-being. For this reason, every developing nation strives for self-reliance so that it could be confidently tagged independent. This, according to Oloko (2015), means that self-reliance must be attained by any nation aspiring for development and independence which must have as its goal, the attainment of self sufficiency.
A nation that depends on other countries for most of its needs and survival, cannot be said to be truly independent. Thus, every citizen, young and old has to be adequately sensitised on the need to be productive so as to achieve this goal of self-sufficiency via self-reliance.
Today’s education, no doubt, is saddled with the task of preparing students for success and eventual leadership in the new global market. The preparation of the young ones so that they can serve the needs of the society has remained its major goal. Suffice it to say that entrepreneurship education ençapsulates the raison d’etre of education which of course is globally considered a veritable machinery for achieving development.
However, for education to actually live up to its transformatory requirements, Friere, cited in Nakpodia and Obielumani (2012) said it has to be such that not only leaves its beneficiaries critically aware of their realities, but leads them to take action upon such awareness. This invariably means that education lives to its bidding only when it equips the individual with the requisite know-how (knowledge) and the right attitude with which to transform self from a dependent being, to an independent, self-reliant being.
This explains why some see entrepreneurship education as the active force of education needed by all and sundry to survive. Its skills are not only relevant to those who are interested in starting and growing their own businesses, but to all. They are necessary in the work place, daily activities, home management, etc.
Therefore, apart from preparing students for any competitive endeavour, entrepreneurship education is tantamount to survival mechanism in the day to day activities of man. In the light of the need to match realities with well-prepared human resources to serve national needs and interest, the Federal Government, through its national policy, postulated the acquisition of appropriate skills and knowledge necessary for one to secure paid employment or be self-employed.
By this provision, it is expected that any child who leaves school after the senior secondary education, should be able to fit into the world of work either as an employee or employer. Section 5 of the 2004 National Policy on Education highlights this. It outlined some of the goals of secondary education to include provision of trained manpower in the applied sciences, technology and commerce at the sub-professional grades, raising a generation of people who can think for themselves as well as respect the views of others. It is also expected to provide technical and vocational skills necessary for agricultural, industrial, commercial and economic development.
The idea behind entrepreneurship education, if well harnessed, will surely bring about economic growth and poverty alleviation in Nigeria. Self-reliance, which is an expected end product of entrepreneurship education is a vital key to self-realisation, better human relationship as well as social, cultural, economic, political, scientific and technological progress.
The curriculum should, therefore, emphasise education that can give way to the acquisition of the right attitude and value for the survival of the individual and the Nigerian society.
Again, since the whole essence of entrepreneurship education lies in equipping the individual with the requisite know-how with which to be useful to first himself and secondly to the society at large, entrepreneurial and relevant skills development should be geared towards building on existing good practices both in terms of pedagogy and module content.