Do you feel uncertain of a career option? Do you lack the freedom to choose a subject that you really want to pursue? Do you always feel low on self-confidence? Are you constantly doubting yourself? A Q&A column to assuage your doubts.

I am a working professional and would like to pursue M.Tech from BITS Pilani through Work Integrated Learning Programmes (WILP). I am in a dilemma about whether to pursue it or not, owing to the Nov 3, 2017, Supreme Court ruling of nullifying all engineering courses conducted through correspondence. Should I pursue it? – Rajesh Thulasi

Dear Rajesh,

It would be nice if you could introspect and think clearly about why you would want to pursue this course, in the first place. The intent is important. Is it to receive a master’s certification from a prestigious university (then the supreme court verdict is a clear deterrent for you), or gain knowledge, skills and excel in a highly technical career (in which case the ruling doesn’t matter)?

BITS WILP is designed to provide candidates with the highest quality education experience, relevant to one’s area of specialisation, along with opportunities to upgrade one’s skills and stay relevant, without having to give up one’s job. There is no difference between syllabus for WILP and regular learning. No one who has done this course has complained about it. It is much a valid and a recognised course for working professionals.

I am 23 and have completed my postgraduation in English literature. I am unable to choose a career path. I wanted to be a fashion designer, but my parents didn’t allow it. I want to crack the NET exam to pursue a PhD. I also want to become a writer. How can I balance all three dreams, while also being unemployed? – Anjali Balachandran

Dear Anjali,

What are you doing to crack the NET? Do you have a plan? Please make a focused goal and work towards accomplishing it. Once you get an admission into your Ph.D or get shortlisted for a job that you like, you will feel secure. With a stable job and basic income, you can enrol into a part-time, weekend fashion designing course and check it out for yourself. It is imperative that you find your identity right now.

With regard to your writing, have you written anything so far? Today, we are blessed to have the option of self-publishing. You should start putting your thoughts and stories out there and once you are discovered, your dream will come true. Good luck.

I am 24, and struggling to complete my postgraduation in physics. Even though I am what you call a smart and witty girl with potential, I have paper backlogs. Right now, I am clueless about my career choice, and where to put my energy and focus on. Since mine is an orthodox family, members are pressuring me to get married or pursue teaching, which I am not interested in. Each time I make up my mind and focus my energy on a goal, something drastic and unexpected happens, and my efforts take a hit. I want to be an independent career women with creative freedom. I am getting increasingly depressed, each day. Please help. – Niranjana SM

Dear Niranjana,

I understand from your email that you seem upset and overwhelmed. It probably is a difficult phase for you right now. First things first — is it possible for you to get some external help to prepare and clear your arrears? Just being done with your PG will give you a relief. Also, everyone around you will back off and calm down. What do you plan to do to be an independent career woman? You need to start working towards that and find something that makes you happy, confident and financially stable. Marriage is no escape route. I would also suggest that you please see a counsellor to help you deal with your issues more effectively. Take care.

I completed my B.Sc in 2017 and took admission in M.Sc physics, but quit it for the preparation of SSC CGI because I wanted to get a job early. However, I am interested in astrophysics. What do I do now — continue preparing for SSC CGI, or pursue my M.Sc? – Ravi Sheoran

Dear Ravi,

I am not certain what the reasons for you to get an early job were, and if external factors (family and immediate environment) have improved now and hence, you are reconsidering pursuing your education again. Or, it is only now that you realised how serious your interest in astrophysics was?

Please double check with your parents if they will be supportive of your choice, as you will not be able to take up a job and contribute to the family for the next two years, whilst you do your M.Sc. If they are supportive, please get your admissions right away for the 2019-2020 academic year. All the best.

Disclaimer: This column is not a substitute for long-term therapy. It is merely a guiding voice. Some issues may need medical intervention.

The author is a practising counsellor and a trainer. She will answer questions sent to The subject line should be: ‘Off the edge’

Click here for the original article on The Hindu

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