Once an individual undergoes the process of education, they obtain knowledge. Education has plentiful impacts for individuals and society. These impacts can be felt on a person's life, the society they live in and even in the higher levels of governance. The benefits of being educated outdo those of being ignorant of being illiterate. These benefits can be seen starting from the people's way of life to how they relate with one another and even how they solve their internal problems and challenges. Human beings were created with curiosity and they enjoy learning and accruing knowledge. However there are those who are ignorant and others did not have the knowledge due to uncontrollable circumstances. We can explore both cases of the educated and the uneducated and we would see how the acquisition of knowledge can and does lead to social changes. Also we can focus on the benefits of having knowledge and the impacts of the opposite (Ianni, William, and Robert 15).
African is a rich continent in terms of minerals and other mines. A community that lives with these valuable materials in their environs can be approached by knowledgeable people who would most probably subject them to oppression and exploitation. The main cause of this is lack of knowledge. If this community knew how they would get income from mining their own minerals, market it and get profits, then they would not be exploited. They are subjected to exploitation in terms of low wages, poor living standards, and their environment being degraded among other negative impacts. Taking an example of the Republic of Congo where they have gold mining. According to worldbank research 2009, only 6.4% of the citizens had enrolled in tertiary (ISCED 5 and 6) level of education. Also it was noted that there were 35% of the citizens were primary school dropouts.
The public expenditure on education as percentage of GDP was just 2% (WorldBank 2). This had a great impact on the country governance too because for a smooth governance, a country need intellectuals. There are those in that community who are ignorant to acquire knowledge. Their ignorance leads to them being marginalized as they can not be of any help during decision making of a given project in their community. These people tend to see that the society has abandoned them leading to isolation. They would result to having a negative attitude towards the intellectuals while as they need them for survival. Therefore they will be force by circumstances to approach the educated so as to earn a living. Due to their ignorance, they would do casual jobs and hence low pay and finally exploitation.
If this community had higher percentage of educated people, this would mean that better governance from the grassroots to the national level would be observed. People would be more informed on what to look for when electing their representatives and would have an impact on the reduction of power misuse, exploitation of the marginalized people and furthermore a better living standards. Knowledge is therefore not only the mirror reflector of the social evils, but also the lifter of a society to experience the benefits of freedom, good leadership and positive social changes.
Knowledge definitely would benefit those who seek it and the society in general. In a community that focuses on achieving higher standards of education, greater opportunities and a better future is guaranteed. Taking an example of Kenya, a country in the Eastern Africa region, education has been placed in the forefront. The country has set aside 10% of their yearly budget on education (WorldBank 3). Moreover, primary education is free! There are also bursary funds to pay for education for the future generation. Comparing the two countries in our example; Republic of Congo and Kenya, we would note that even if the Republic of Congo has the most valued mineral in the world, Kenya is far much ahead in terms of its economy. This is due to their center of attention on knowledge. Currently there is introduction of the optic fiber cable and this will open up so many opportunities for education and consequently for jobs leading to a higher living standards of the people in that country.
From the free education, Kenya will have a lot of new talents, intellectuals and a well informed society in the end. The future of such a community is bright and there is the assurance of a better tomorrow through their concern on academic prosperity. However, on the other side, we would find that there are those who choose to be ignorant. They did not attend school as they did not get the real need of it. They will definitely end up working for the educated and hence they would be subjected to exploitation. Others did not attend school due to uncontrollable circumstances. They too would end up getting their income from jobs created by the educated. They do not have skills and the knowledge hence they would trust the educated for each and every decision on their behalf. This would lead to their exploitation as they have no say.
Knowledge brings out a more educated and informed people. With knowledge, an individual and a society is well armed to prevent infection and diseases and to make use of health services efficiently. Therefore the acquisition of knowledge can and does lead to social change as the given society would be knowledgeable of their rights, freedom and the law. They would not be oppressed or being marginalized in accordance to knowledge (Cotton and Jo 112-114).
The accusation of knowledge is viewed to be more social than an individual obligation. In any given society the benefits of having knowledge is invaluable. A society needs knowledgeable people for the smooth running of their endeavors. Education has become a basic need. For one to get the well know needs; food, clothing and shelter, then they need to have skills for their continuous supply of these basic needs. Therefore, knowledge has become the pathway to the attainment of the basic needs. An individual and a society need educated citizens to be able to solve problems and challenges facing them when they arise. People with educated can not be oppressed not even be marginalized. These people have the know-how of the law; they know their rights and their freedom as guaranteed by the set rules and regulations.