Sunday, May 27, 2007

Hazaron Khwahishain Aisi...

I came across Mythun's blog post about his last half year today while browsing. It spoke of his trials over the last half year where he was unable to get admissions into an MS programme, which finally culminated into him receiving an admission into a programme of his choice. Firstly, heartiest congratulations to him!!! Its a brilliant achievemnt, specially because he got what he wanted.

In his blog he mentioned a few things that after reading, pricked me somewhere, because I had/have myself faced such segmentations at various times. One, was him not getting admission into a school because he didnt have a "First Class with Distinction" in his first year, coz he flunked Mech. I believe, to be an IT engineer, you do not need to learn Mech. And I have seen a lot of students whose lives are screwed because of this idiotic paper. Also, this "First Class with Distinction" is an eyewash.

I say, keep a 100 marks practical exam in the core subjects and lets see how many of these "toppers" manage to pass 40. But as said in The Fountainhead, the easiest way to bring down a society is to enshrine mediocrity. And that is something the Maharashtra education has excelled at doing. A stupid board exam system in 10th and 12th, which only tests the rote learning, poor teaching in schools and junior college levels. Atrocious teaching standards in Engineering colleges. A very uneven playing field for students based on admissions through donations in Junior college and Engineering college.

A student is judged based on what college he studied at. But whats the criteria for entrance into these colleges? Rote learning. A student is judged by what marks he has scored. What is the criteria? Again rote learning. So, what is the guarantee that the student whose profile you are impressed with is actually impressive? I dont know.

All I know is that, if you are someone in such a good position, make the most of it. Milk your profile for all its worth. And if you are not, then you work harder and work sincerely and hope for the best. And most importantly, never stop believing in your own ability. No on needs certifications from other people about how good each one of us is. Deep down, we know.

The second thing that touched me was when he mentioned about the aspirations of his parents. His mom being vocal about her fears and his dad voicing his concerns in private to his mom. Being a fellow Tam-Bhram, could relate to this completely :) Its so true :)

P.S: I wanted to write so much more. So much more indeed. I wanted to relate my experiences being at the wrong end of the "profile" picture and the way I have still been fortunate to get good breaks. I wanted to relate, why I did not follow the system. But somewhere, deep down, something has changed. At some level, probably, this is nitpicking, commenting on the education system. But I have decided that I wont feel sorry for myself for my poor luck at various times and neither will I attach too much importance to anyones profile competing with me. I dont want to sit here and offer justifications or reasons. I just want to continue from where I am today (whichever way I got here) and look only 1 way: FORWARD. There is no looking back for me anymore. I have mentally disciplined myself for that.

I read Mythun's post and for a long time, it left me unbalanced. I was not able to put a finger on what I was feeling. I did not have words to express my emotions or my state of mind or the way I related with what he wrote. Then I found the right words on Vijaya's blog about Hazaron Khwaishain Aisi.

It sums up the essence, doesnt it? We live a life of dreams and hopes and aspirations. Ultimately, we all have our own journeys to reach our own goals. So why compare, why bother about where we lack (ofcourse, lets improve on our weaknesses), lets just go ahead and achieve our dreams.

Kya farak padta hai agar khwaishain hazaron Hain aur zindagi bas ek? Har armaan par ek zindagi bitadein aur har khwaish ko poora kar denge. Bas... thats it.


Shweta said...

nice blog ! i agree with you that our education system favors those who can mug up better than others.
i think the system is to be blamed.
but on the brighter side i think it jus makes us even more strong willed to achieve what we want.and the key is not to feel depressed and dejected.instead make it a point to show how u were worth it all the while :)

Maverick said...

@shweta: i like the optimism that you present. it is truly a nice way to put forth ur point.

however, its not only about the system favouring ppl "who can mug up more". its about the system not supporting ppl who dont want to mug.
eg. if you really want to learn a subject well, or if you are passionate about something, do you have the resources and facilities to do it to your best ability and is it facilitated by the system? can you make 10 projects in DBMS AND have time to write crap assignments AND attend meaningless lectures?

secondly, it is about the wrong impressions and presentations that a marks based system gives. how many times have u heard the comment: "woh scholar hai. 75% laaya..." when all he/she does is rattofy and score by attending vidyalankars and preparing the "important" chapters...

my grouse is against the perks of success that such "success" brings. there are a lot of benefits to being successful.

it is a fault in the social system that we judge people by their scores and not by an impartial test of ability. an ideal system should be able to separate the good ones from the not-so-good ones.

ours doesnt. and that is because the definition of good and not-so-good is not clearly defined. and that arises because we do not have : 1) a merit based system 2) a system that tests u all round and not solely based on 1 exam.

that said, as you said, and as the bhagavad gita says, "karm kar. phal ki chinta mat kar." this quote holds true for the stories of all the great people i have read.

it might be surprising that the soothing effect to an anger/helplessness/frustration inducing issue such as our flawed education system lies in such an old scripture.

but, the more things change. the more they remain the same.

arch said... knw sometimes no matter hw hard u work it just feels like it wasnt enough cause u never end up achievin wat u aimed for... n this happens to all of us stuydin at de so called "MU"...i mean isnt it ironic that in a subject u slogged n worked so hard for u end up gettin a bloody kt (cause de examiner was stupid enough to overlook ur right ans.. lets nt evn get to de endless revaluation waits)... n some paper u write utter bullshit in ...u score like a 60...irony of life..well but lets nt nitpick on de system ...look at de bigger picture...but wat is de bigger picture?... de fact tht a university rejects u cause u gt a silly kt thanks to some old fool who doesnt knw de subj ne better than u do...or de fact tht they dnt give u a freakin job unless u have a so called first class...(did u knw de cut off for engineers at iim b was 85% aggregate ...i mean which sane person wuld get tht frm bombay uni....are they freakin kiddin me ).. who sets these standards ...shouldnt it be uniform throughout de country atleast...i mean if iwent to manipal mebbe.. n do those stupid americans evn knw wat v go thru as students here...they shuld probably try writin one of our so called exam papers here ... den theyl think twice before rejectin only thing our university is good at is makin donkeys outta us... wid de amount of writin v do.. v may as well become some kinda labourers.. for all those who come out sane after four yrs of engineerin ...hats oof to em.. clearly i aint one of em..hehe... but as shweta put it IT WAS ALL WORTH IT!!!!

vijaya said...

Hi Naveen,

Interesting post with ur points rightly put. There is the occasional tinge of bitterness here and there, but you've done well to sprinkle it with your optimism.

All said and done, I must confess that I am, in all aspects a by-product of this system of 'rote-learning' - though, those days seem rather far to me now. I do wish it weren't so - I might have turned out to be a more informed individual perhaps.

In spite of the flaws of our educational system, the Indian mind has taken over the clockworks of major industries across the world. Give us knowledge delivered in true spirit of learning- give us knowledge with the promise of giving merit its due and India shall truly take flight.

Your post has stirred some serious thinking - good job!


voodooboy said...

"..its about the system not supporting ppl who dont want to mug."

*Prints it...pastes it on the wall*

I honestly couldn't agree more! I mean, i know i'll b incurrin the wrath of many when i say..quiet frankly, i ENJOYED certain subjects in engineering; as in thoroughly HAD FUN studying them. Yet, my interest, passion and hardwork for it goes down the drain the instant i see the paper and realize MU has put up a question that makes absolutely no sense even though i have sincerely studied every bit of the subject. However, the "TOPPER" somehow managed to mug up the paper solutions and comes out with a smug face...while im left wondering why do i even bother.

Honestly, this whole MS fiasco has instilled the feeling of "Hope for the best, perpare for the worst"..nothings gonna go work on the alternatives and what not. If it does work out...well then good for u!
An im glad atleast some people are able to relate to wht i went thru/wrote. :)