Scoring 87.6 percent marks in Class 12, Aakanksha Tiwari knows she only has an ‘outside chance’ of getting into Delhi University. “DU is my first choice, but my marks may not be enough. So I am looking at other options”.
Tiwari’s other options include – clearing the mass communication entrance test at DU, BBA from IP University (after clearing the entrance test), clearing CET and pursuing a technical course or joining a DIET and pursuing her graduation through correspondence.
Tiwari is lucky in that sense. Having secured more than 80 per cent marks, she may at least get into a BA or BCom pass course in the University. But for lakhs of students who have secured 60-80 per cent in their Board exams, the choice essentially boils down to spending a huge amount of money and taking admission in expensive private universities, clearing entrance tests or pursuing technical education and graduation through correspondence.
“It may look like students have a whole range of choices, but the truth is the choices are limited and defined by the money they can spend,” says Dr Nirmalaya Samanta, who teaches at Ramanajun college and is currently exploring admission options for his daughter who has secured around 79 per cent marks in Class 12.
Securing 79 per cent marks, Samanta knows getting into DU may be tough, but there are other avenues as well that are interesting and have a good career scope.
With just one lakh seats in public universities for more than 2.7 lakh students that appeared in CBSE Class 12 exams just for Delhi, education at a public university remains a pipe dream for most. More than 10 lakh students sat for Class 12 exams this year.
More than 2 lakh students apply for admission into mere 54,000 seats at Delhi University.
So while Aditya Tiwari who secured 78 per cent marks will be pursuing hotel management from IIHM Delhi after taking out an education loan in his name, Sharbhanu Dutta who has secured 69 per cent is looking at pursuing mechanical engineering from Manipal University, Amity University or Bennett University.
“Everyone wants their child to go to DU, but if that doesn’t work, IP and Ambedkar University are second choices. Those who can’t even get through these, even after entrance tests and can afford to spend money sending their children abroad, out of Delhi or to a private university in Delhi NCR. But most can’t afford that also. Those that can’t end up either pursuing graduation through Open schooling or enrolling in technical courses that require minimum percentage requirement,,” says Samanta.
Many, like Shivam Dodhani, have no option but to head of the city. Wanting to pursue mass communication, he has applied to Xaviers and Jai Hind college in Mumbai.
“For students securing less than 90 percent, the future really is bleak. It is either out of the city or into a private university,” says Ameeta Mulla Wattal, Principal, Springdales School Pusa Road, says.
Graduation through correspondence or pursuing vocational education remains the last and perhaps the most undesirable option, but lakhs of students end up pursuing just that. A case in point being Hardev Singh, who having secured 72 per cent marks, will enroll in DU and do a course in mobile repairing side by side.
More than 4.5 lakh students are currently enrolled in DU’s School of Open Learning.
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