Every business has a period of the year when the profits start plummeting and the business owners are over the moon. Most of the time it is referred to as “Season” in the business fraternity. For instance, during summers there is a spike in the prices of Refrigerators, air conditioners, and room coolers, making it profitable for the relevant industry. Similarly, June-September can be regarded as a period when Higher Education institutes, particularly private universities, must be finding it hard to manage their bank account as thousands of students, who have managed to clear their high school, start looking for a college to pursue their professional education. This is precisely the make or break point for many depending on what career they are about to choose.
If you are in a hurry and quickly want to know what happens if take admission in a field you have no interest in click here. But we would recommend you to read entire blog to get the whole picture. You were just scrolling Facebook a minute ago, c’mon you can spare 5 minutes. Now continue reading…
A bit about Career Counselling in Pakistan
Before we go on to talk about why opting a “right career” is important, let us spare some time to discuss the abysmal state of career counseling in Pakistan. In Pakistan, the career counselors available are parents, chachu, mamu etc etc, everyone but a right person who knows about the strengths and interest of the children. For an average Pakistani kid, who burns the midnight oil to get a good percentage in F.Sc, not the ones who attempt the paper sufficient enough to get them passing marks, the default career option is Engineering or Medical. If you are a Pre-Engineering student who has been able to get a percentage above 80 in F.Sc, it is incumbent (Farz ho jata ha) to look for a career in Engineering or else heavens would fall. Same goes for those who have Pre-medical subjects in F.Sc. Why these two professions? Because it is broadly understood, and falsely, throughout the country that these are well-paid jobs and give you a sense of pride as well.
The reason we are specifically talking about intermediate or F.Sc students and not the CIE or O/A level students is that generally CIE students are in a better position to judge for themselves based on their grooming. I mean it is understandable that if their parents have spent hundreds of thousands of rupees on a different system of education than prevalent, they will take various factors into account while deciding the fate of their child, including considering the child’s interest. So lets continue with what we were talking…
I am not a psychologist but I think the names such as “Pre-medical” and “Pre-Engineering”, given on the basis of the difference of just two subjects, Biology, and Mathematics, psychologically program the children that this is what they are supposed to do after the F.Sc. Of course, unless the child makes it evident to the parents from his/her F.Sc percentage that such an expensive professional education is only going to be a dent in their hard earned fortune. In a bid to get admission in a good engineering or med school, students take gap years to improve their grades or prepare for entrance exams just because they have been told that their whole life depends upon getting this admission.
In the United States and other countries, career counselors are specially hired in high schools to guide the students in choosing a career best suited for them. They talk to students, find out their aspirations, strengths, and interest and based on these factors guide them toward a career in which they can excel. In Pakistan, most of the times, teachers found in colleges are pro at telling the students manipulations while attempting the paper which will get them more marks in board exams and that’s all. Nothing about career counseling at any level.
Go for something you will enjoy doing
The fact that in most cases the entire set of career options depend upon the performance of students in F.Sc exams, does not leave much room for students to ponder what they actually want to do. In case you are not able to get a reasonable percentage in the board exams, you have to choose the field which your parents will decide because there is no leverage of discussion as you have been branded as “Naa Laiq”. And we have discussed already what actually happens when you get good marks instead.
If you are an F.Sc student you must have been told by 5 different people about 5 different career options which have good scope in terms of job and earning. The fact of the matter is, there is a scope in everything you are good at. And you will not be able to reap any benefit out a billion dollar industry if that is not something you enjoy doing. Once you have decided what gives you pleasure, learning will all be fun and enjoying. You will invest more of your time and energy into it and hence become a pro at what you will do.
4 years of university is just a beginning. If you find yourself frustrated in this short time span because you feel like this is not where you belong, just imagine how will you cope with the relevant job you will have to do for the rest of your life? Therefore, choose what you love doing, and you won’t have to work for a single day in your life, because whatever you will do you will enjoy it doing.
But I don’t know what my interest is?
This is another dilemma of our system that even in the university life students are unable to explore what they really want to do, what can you expect from F.Sc kids? The solution to the problem is to talk about it. Talk with the people, especially those who are currently enrolled in the universities or have just passed out. People who are aware of what prospects different fields have to offer in today’s world and matches your interest the best. Secondly, there is always a liking or interest in a particular field which exists but we do not really think of it as a career option. Maybe because it does not lie on the parameters of “best career options” by the society. But it is not the society which has to live your life, it is yourself.
Try to decide for yourself what you really want to be or what field you are going to choose. Because if you opt for something just because someone else asked you to, you will end up blaming that person for everything bad which happens afterward for the rest of your life. It is a very important decision of your life so give it as much time as you can.
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