By Allwin Tom, Batch of 2016
JEE coaching. School. More coaching. Boards. AIEEE. College Admission. Mid Sem. Treats. End Sem. Sherlock marathon. Mid Sem. Vellapanti. End Sem. F.R.I.E.N.D.S marathon. Mid sem. More treats. End Sem. Fests and concerts. Mid Sem. ‘What-just-happened?’. End Sem. Procrastinations and deep contemplations. A big mix of remaining mid sems, end sems, CAT, GATE, GRE, TOEFL, all-other- abbreviated-entrances’ preparation.
An NSITian? That would be your life’s four years (till you are a Bachelor’s in Engineering) summarised. Now, if you re-read your to-be degree carefully, there is this bit of ‘Engineering’ that you might have skipped. This is a very easy mistake because all you have done till now is to prepare for examinations. And ‘application’ has become obsolete.
A majority of an NSITian’s life is spent on preparing for examinations and that defines ‘learning to be an engineer’. In the interstices between examinations, we are so involved in savouring the freedom, that we hardly ‘do’ anything. We pick up the books a fortnight before the exams (or else suffer the mortal fear of being called a ‘ghissu’) and cram all the possible formulae, derivations, definitions, examples, notes, and rest is for God to take care of. Once the exams are over, the cycle starts again. And by the time we reach the ‘enlightenment years’ (3rd and 4th year), we realize the importance of marks, an impressionable resume, and enter the entrance era. Again.
Be it the last years of school or all the years of college, in the rat race for marks (or general complacency), we forget what we really started off with, to become an engineer. Working mechanically on a redundant syllabus of this dynamic field, we seldom discover the charms of the field. The delay in result declaration just fuels the complacency and triggers procrastination, giving us enough time to catch up on the latest season of Breaking Bad or whatever-the-world-has-to-offer. But we do become an engineer, don’t we? Passing all the exams and all?
Once you are done with the blame game (something we all ace in, after years of doing it), you may explore beyond the confines of your smugness with the status quo. You may want to reclaim that lost passion in the subject you chose to pursue. You may want to apply what you read and make sense of the progress your dynamic field has made. You may want to enjoy what you learn, explore and validate the ‘engineering’ bit of your degree (to-be). Or you may just attend the fest for which you got free passes and forget what you just read. The choice is really your own.
To B.E. or not to B.E.
Friends, NSITians, and the admin, lend me your years,
For I come to give a tale, of the befuddling 4 years.
Once upon a time, tucked in a jungle far away,
Lived a few thousand students, happy and gay.
Happy I say, for they never did study,
And the very first thing they did, was blame the faculty!
It was an able faculty, very experienced too, if I say,
Though the heavy engineering syllabus might have scared a few students away.
No soul is spared by the formidable placement hype,
Why study? Even Pappu, who can’t dance, got a job with just about a 65
But the people who, despite such existing circumstances, wish to study,
Realise that they could just borrow books from their dearest daddy.
For the syllabus is so old and belongs to the Stone Age,
Our retired professors could have studied this in their very own college.
Moreover, the theoretical B.E. degree we get, receives much flak,
What else, it’s not even the standard, Indian B.Tack!
Anyway, the MBA rat race freely courses through our veins,
If it comes down to this, we’ll just board the banal MBA train.
And even if all these reasons do fail to work,
Why must we even explain our reasons to shirk? We’ve come to college after a long, long wait and labour,
I guess I can live now, need I say more?