Yesterday, I was watching ‘3 Idiots’ for the fourth time and yet again, Aamir Khan’s celebrated slogan “Kaamiyaab nahi.. Kaabil bano..” kept reminding me of those people, who had convinced me to take up science, even though I had always been interested in Humanities..!! Thank god, I never listened to these people and came to humanities. I am very happy about the path I have chosen and my journey so far on that. Well, it is not about how I defied people’s wishes and acted over-smart. But, it is certainly about the pressures kids have to face during their student’s life.
If we look around us, we come across a number of people, who are not pursuing something that interests them, instead have gone far in a field where they do not belong. In our society, there are plenty of; engineers who loved literature, doctors who wanted to do business, teachers who wanted to become actors and Chartered Accountants who dreamed of becoming politicians. This is extremely complicated and not so easy to understand.
The reasons for this situation can be classified under two headings; viz. academic pressures and societal pressures. Academic pressures are the most important and can be understood easily. In today’s newspaper, we read about the sky-high cut-offs of the Delhi University colleges. Only the students who get 95% and above, are eligible for admissions to certain courses, otherwise they have to get admitted to whichever course available. This refers to the new-age ‘Varna’ system practiced in the field of education. The ‘hierarchy of courses’ decides who gets what, and not the interests of the students..!!
Societal pressures are also equally significant. Parents, relatives, neighbors, family friends; all have their share of role in the decision-making process in academic life. People have their experiences to share, which generally tend to confuse and misguide poor kids. Moreover, while guiding someone, people think in terms of ‘scope’, future prospects, placements and packages. Seldom is student’s liking taken into consideration. These societal pressures affect the student’s decision-making terribly, so much so that, even the students don’t understand what exactly they wish to pursue.
Both the academic and societal pressures are inter-related and work in a manner of a vicious circle. As people think that some courses have more ‘scope’, those courses are preferred to others and are over-crowded. And then in return, these over-crowded courses are thought to be having great future prospects and are emphasized upon. It also reminds us about the conventional ‘demand- supply curves’ in economics. However, education is not only about economics or business. It is about cultivating interests and then specializing in the subjects you like. People are expected to contribute to the economy, society and polity from their education. But, how do we expect people to contribute if they are not doing something they really like? How come, people do not understand the simple fact that creativity and productivity is the highest when you like and enjoy what you are into??
Both, academic and societal pressures have to be addressed together, as they are inter-linked. Neither is this an overnight task, nor can it be achieved by any one person. The whole society has to rally behind the cause. Major role has to be played by the parents and the teachers who have to guide kids in the proper direction. Students should also realize their interests and goals and be firm on them. Moreover, getting a handsome job and earning good money should not be the only motive behind education. As said earlier, education is much more than that; it is about igniting oneself, listening to our own conscience and contributing to the growth of our nation through the knowledge and wisdom we have acquired from our education.