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High cut-offs drive Delhi kids abroad

Despite topping in his class,Rohan Nayar is looking to go abroad for further studies.

Written by Dipankar Ghose | New Delhi |
July 5, 2011 2:30:33 am

Despite topping in his class in the higher secondary exam this year,Rohan Nayar is looking to go abroad for further studies. The high cut-off marks set by Delhi University has erased his chances of securing admission in a college of his choice in the Capital.

Nayar,a student of Vasant Valley School,secured 94.8 per cent in aggregate in the science stream and was keen to pursue economics at DU’s most-sought after colleges — Shri Ram College of Commerce (SRCC) or the St Stephen’s. However,a rude shock awaited him when when the cut-off-list for both these colleges were announced.

“I had to drop my plan of pursuing Economics and opt for Mathematics,” said Rohan,who has secured admission in Mathematics (Hons) at St Stephen’s.

Rohan is not the only student whose education plans have gone awry due to the cut-off marks this year. Tarana Chauhan from DPS,RK Puram topped Humanities stream in her school with 96.8 per cent,but still found it impossible to get a seat in a college of choice

Similar,is Jasmine Arneja’s story. A student of Springdales School,Pusa Road,she scored 95.2 per cent in Class XII. She could not make it to the SRCC first list and lost out by one mark.

While many of the top ranking students had to make do with the admission they got,others preferred trying their luck overseas.

Kamakshi Malhotra (Science stream) from GD Goenka School was keen on Chemical Engineering and applied to universities in the US while she was in Class XII. Nikhil Pandi,from Vasant Valley School too applied to a few French universities despite topping the humanities stream.

Komal Sood,principal of Shri Ram School in Gurgaon was candid in admitting that “something was wrong” in the way schools were giving marks to students. She said the CBSE and CISCE need to look into the issue of giving marks to students.

“The marks students get these days is unrealistic. I think both CBSE and CISCE need to look into their marking schemes. They are giving far too many marks to the students. Also,the first cut-off lists of different colleges was unrealistic this year.”

Her tip to students to avoid such a predicament is “to plan much earlier”.

Ashok Ganguly,ex-CBSE chairperson said,“There is a huge gap between the supply and the demand. The quality of higher education across India has gone down,so every one prefers Delhi University .”

CBSE sources said,in Delhi alone,nearly 6,000 students have got above 90 per cent marks in Class XII. And nationwide,this figure is at least 22,000.

Several students who passed out from HSC in 2010 have been looking at foreign universities for their higher education as they did not get the combination of subjects they wanted to pursue in Delhi University.

After securing 94 per cent marks in her Class XII last year,Nikita Sachdeva did not immediately start looking out for DU colleges. Instead,she decided to head for the US to pursue Economics at University of Chicago,Illinois.

Shiva Mandala is also following the same pattern. The 18-year-old will be flying to the US this August to study at one of the liberal arts college,Oberlin College at Ohio. With 95 per cent marks in Class XII,Shiva could have chosen from colleges in DU but he preferred going to the US since he wanted to study a combination of bio-technology and computer science. He could not find any college in DU or India that would offer this combination.

Officials at the US-India Educational Foundation (USIEF) said the trend of Indian students going to the US for under-graduate courses has gone up over the years. According to a survey conducted last year by the Institute of International Education,there are 10,4897 students from India studying in the US.

Renuka Raja Rao,country co-ordinator,Educational Advising Services at the USIEF,said,“For the last many years,the number of students going to the US has been between 25,000 and 37,000. During the 1980’s the number of Indian students in US was in single digit.”

Students have also been browsing through brouchers of colleges,universities in France,Germany and Netherlands.

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