10th Standard is a defining moment for every Indian student. Once the Board exams are over, every student needs to decide on selecting a stream for him or her, which will form a base for his future career. Stream selection is a very cumbersome process. All students and parents are confused and in everybody’s mind there is, this one question.
How did you select your Stream?
In fact many of us never selected our stream or career. Our parents did that for us. They had decided what we should study in our 11th grade and eventually that went on to become our career. We were never asked or were given a choice to select our stream. This was the scene predominant in majority of the families, as recent as 5 years back and this had resulted in to a lot of stress, anxiety, sleepless nights, nightmares, paper backlogs, ill health, heart burns for students, as well as their parents which had led to a lot more complexities and had its ramifications. It was not, that parent wished so, but parents were over protective about their children and always wanted to give their best. They always wanted their children to succeed and settle down in their lives as early as possible. Children were also not aware, what they were getting into. They had different vision of their lives. They wanted to study something else but were not sure whether their choice of stream would help them succeed in finding a better job or a good career and because of the non-scientific decision making there was lot of chaos in the lives.
For example: An Engineer, not by choice but by circumstances. Somehow passed the course and completed his degree, got a job. He would always look at the clock on the wall for 5.00 PM. He is doing this 9.00 to 5.00 job for his survival and not because of his passion. Obviously he is not happy, always stressful, added to the stress are his family responsibilities, financial commitments etc., neither he can leave the job nor he is left with the time to follow his passion. I hope many of us could relate to these circumstances. For once I was never given a choice, it was my parents who decided my stream. Let’s not repeat the same mistake with our children.
Some of the popular choice of courses back then were streams broadly categorised like Engineering, Medicine, Commerce or Humanities, even today families are choosing them blindly except for very few well informed parents. Many of the parents feel 11th grade/class is not the right time to decide the course or career options. But by the time they completes their 12th grade/class, options will be limited and two valuable years would have been gone. I feel it is in the 10th class, students should assess themselves and take a right career choice and option. Sooner the better.
What are the current trends in stream selection:
- Blindly Following the Neighbors, Class Mates, Relatives, Colleague’s children’s, etc. 2.Courses and colleges offering better placements and jobs, 3. Fulfilling parents dreams. 4. To get good matrimony matches for their wards. 5. To settle their children abroad. Reasons could be manifold but definitely are not scientific and rationale.
But the times have changed and some of those streams are not any more job getters, or some are very expensive and out of reach for many of us. Meanwhile there is lot of progress in societies around the world in general and India in particular. The choice of courses and career options available these days have also increased immensely.
Many of my industrialist friends often complain that the quality of employees whom they have recruited after following stringent recruitment processes and best practices, are deteriorating day by day, even after paying them reasonably good salaries, they do not want to work hard, there is no sense of responsibility, accountability and loyalty. It might be, these people are not what they are by their choice or may be wrong choice of their course of study and career.
Even today many parents, frequently ask’s me, what could be the best available course in the market for their children. They still look for quick fix solutions. I often reply to them, that, there is no best or worst course. “Courses are courses” and all are good. Our consideration should not be on which course to select but what is the most suitable course and career option for our children. Our main consideration should be happiness of our children and success will automatically follow. They should follow their passion and they should first identify their natural strength. Research have proved that people who have followed their natural strength as their career, went on to become great professionals in their chosen field. They never struggled. For them it was their passion, they loved each and every moment of their work and were always free of stress.
If we look around us, we will find successful people are those who are following their gifted natural abilities and strengths. Celebrities like, Movie stars, Cricketers, CEOs of multinational corporations, Politicians, Scientists, Sports Stars, Painters, Dancers, Singers, Industrialists, Architects, Academicians, Yoga Gurus, Photographers, Spiritual Leaders, Stock Brokers, Doctors, Engineers, IT Professionals, Investment Advisors, Social Entrepreneurs, Television Anchors, Radio Jockeys, Musicians, Economists, Naturopaths, Zoologists etc. etc.
So, What is a Natural Strength? How do we identify it?
Careers are based on Natural abilities and Eight multiple Intelligence’s. Namely 1. Linguistic, 2. Visual, 3. Musical, 4. Logical, 5. Kinaesthetic, 6. Intrapersonal, 7. Interpersonal and 8. Naturalistic. All these eight intelligence’s are present in each and every individual but in varied degrees and proportions, among’st these, One intelligence will be the most dominant Learning strength in an individual which can be nurtured and developed into talent. The student who pursues the most dominant intelligence, which happens to be the natural strength of that individual, they will be passionate about their study and will be stress free and will be more happy and will achieve significant success in their career. These days there are many options and tools available in the market to find out the most suitable course and careers. Various Vendors are offering different tools to assess the suitability of the course based on different parameters. I suggest parents to take informed decisions about the available tools in the market.
Choose a tool which not only focuses on one or two parameters, but which focuses on multiple parameters. The tools selected should be able to assess the student in different aspects like their IQ, Focus, Decision Making ability and Creativity. Apart from these, the said tool should also find out the natural strength of the student. The tool should also focus on the pace and style of learning. It should also indicate whether he is a logical or Creative person.
So please take informed decisions and choose your carrier wisely utilising various tools available in the market. Wishing all the best to all parents and children’s of 10th grade/ Class for a happy and successful careers.
Jampana Srinivas Raju. Director, T&P-HUB & Career Councillor