How many times it has been observed potentially bright candidates losing their way after college. They could have become successful professionals in the domain of their interest but in lieu of several factors they end up nowhere. Therefore, in this important post, we would be visiting some areas where upcoming college pass outs need to be careful. This post is not precisely about “career counselling”, nevertheless, it would be a quick alert to students who might be caught unaware on their career graph.
College might mean differently in different parts of the world. However, by college, we intend your higher secondary education or the intermediate level or the “+2” level as is called in some educational systems. For convenience we would refer to this level of education as +2 throughout this post.
Failing to Plan is Planning to Fail
A student’s career reaches major turning point when s/he stands on the verge of completing the +2 level. This juncture of his career can be treated as the depot from where various trains leave for different destination. And thus, a student, by this time in his career, needs to be spot on with his planning.
It is a major flaw to plan when the student reaches this level. Rather, the plan for the next level of career-journey should be designed at least two years ago. This would allow the student all the time to shape and manoeuvre the career in the right course. Unlike this, planning on the brinks of +2 would create mere chaos with a thousand options beckoning towards it so much so that the student would finally end up choosing a wrong stream for him/herself.
Finally, once again, plan early, as early as two years before you are to leave +2 level otherwise, the lack of plan has the potential to stymie your career graph!
Choose the College Prudently
Education does not end; rather it takes a new course of flow after +2 or after BTech. You need to at least, attain a Bachelor’s degree, if not more, to have any standing in today’s world. Subsequently, choosing the right college for further education is the next big question which the student needs to deal with. Here are a few yardsticks or suggestions which would allow you take this extremely important decision prudently:
- Placement record: Check out the placement record of the college you select. At the end of the day you must court a secure and satisfying job for yourself. In wake of this enquiry, it would help you if you talk to some ex-students or seniors of the college to have some idea of the swing of things.
- Company profile visiting the college for recruitment: It should not dupe you if the college management hangs a long list of companies that “patronize” the college for recruitment. You should check the reputation of the company to bank of the college.
- Quality of teaching: To gauge quality of teaching, you would have to keep an eye on several key factors. Start with the professors. The professors must be experienced and enough in their areas to lay the foundations in you. You can enquire about their research interests and if at all they are pursuing any research. Check out the college laboratory infrastructure if you have planned a technical career for yourself. It must be up to date with the current technological developments. For instance, would not it be good if the college uses a centralized, local server for all college level activities! Library is yet another area which gives you a good understanding of the college. Check out for diversity of resources on the shelves of the library in your area of interest; similarly, gauge for the facility of research journals in the library; a scarcity thereof is not a good sign.
If the college you short-listed organizes for any symposium, seminar or conference, do make it a point not to miss it. Being actually there in the college before paying the hefty amount in the name of admission registration, would give you a firsthand experience of the swing of things in the college.
Short Term Courses: As indicated earlier that after +2 levels, a myriad number of options open up including those offering short term programs. This is yet another area which might not be particularly fruitful to students in their long term professional career. Due to several reasons, including those in which does not directly has a direct influence, a student is sometimes forced to pursue short term course(s). Nevertheless, it becomes very specialized and limited in scope as far as skill set is concerned. It is possible, nevertheless, that you might find a job through the short term course and this generally becomes the alluring element for many students, however, the immediate money it offers does not stand any comparison wich the many benefits which the traditional counterpart would offer. For instance, not many companies recognize short term course to their long term counterpart. The growth with a short term course in the background would be much restrained on the long run. Therefore, it is suggestible to look at the broader canvas than opting for short term course after +2 levels.
Flock Following: We call it Flock Following. And it is a very common phenomenon amongst students. According to this syndrome, a student does not take a decision based on his cogitation. Rather some student takes the decision to pursue a particular course, in a particular college and that becomes viral; virtually every second student follows the suite. It must be understood that the requirements, capabilities, short comings would be fundamentally different from student to student and therefore, such a blind following would lead to devastating results.
Social and Personal Issues
The Activist within: In colleges some students lose their track by marching for some social or political agenda, often known as the “college politics” in some societies; rather than, concentrating wholeheartedly in the studies. On worst situations such “activists” also end up being incarcerated. Therefore, remember that your primary goal as a student is to bag a good career. There is no “achievement” in transforming the career-oriented platform provided by the college into a political dais.
Personal Issues: The unwarranted, unchecked, wanton life of college dormitories often result in the failure of a student, including those who are bright. The spectrum of carefree lifestyle might envelope everything from malicious intoxication, lascivious practices, to suicides and murders owing to unrequited emotions. If any or all of these factors are hampering you from achieving your professional career as a student then it must be handled maturely to be forsaken.
Once at the thresholds of +2 levels of schooling, it gets all serious. An entire host of new avenues open up. Unfortunately, with all the options opening up, the chances of a student being lost amidst it are also rife! Therefore, it is important that you plan for your career before taking any decision or choose the right stream and college for yourself. It is not advisable to succumb to the allures of short term career options and finally keep away from contagious college viruses in the form of social and personal issues.
We are sure that you think over the yardsticks given in this post, you would help yourself shape a better career.