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Making the right choice

Josh B. Niraula

"To be or not to be" has and will always be the question, whether we like or not- making choices are an integral part of life. The billion-dollar question is not whether we make the choice or not. It is whether we finally make the right choice. Making the right choice is the bottom line of every success story.

An individual's career choice is, needless to say, of utmost importance. Contrary to popular teenage belief, the career choice is not made after graduating from college. It is more often than not, finalised when the student makes his/her choice of streams at the end of high school, i.e. after the SLC. This career choice is stamped indelibly in a student's life when he/she decides on the stream of study and the institution that offers this course. These choices are vital. Sadly, the time and professional guidance required to make these choices correctly are limited.


Deciding on the right course:

In Nepal, parents and friends primarily influence students in their decision making. It is not uncommon to find parents making choices for their children even when they are adults. In many cases, parents influenced by their own petty desires and social pressures make unjust choices for their children. For example, it is a trend for many parents whose children secure first division in the SLC examination to, directly or indirectly, coerce their children to study Science to become medical doctors or engineers. As a result, many students after a few months, when they cannot cope up with the course, experience a growing sense of frustration. This frustration causes immense emotional turbulence leading to the birth of anti-social sentiment. Decadence among the youth begins with the easily resorted means to release this frustration: drug abuse and disobedience. These twin social evils are the commonest means of emotional release among teenagers. Discipline problems in and outside school, low motivation towards studies and inclination towards harmful drugs are most common in the behavior patterns of these students. This brings pain to both parties: children and parents.

As long as parents make choices for their children without taking into serious consideration the children's needs and inclinations, these social problems will persist. The solution is in encouraging children to make the right choices and giving them the patience and understanding they need. Giving them the freedom to choose and trust and support when their choices are legitimate will put and end tot the cold war that exists in many parent-teenage child relationships. Children should be encouraged to make their own decisions for themselves from an early age. This creates the much-needed self-esteem required in ones teen years to be able to say "NO" to the wrong choices.


Deciding on the right institution:

Finding a proper institution is another area where students and parents have to exercise utmost care. The lack of trust in the schools and colleges in the country compounded by the barrage of often misleading and false advertisements, parents send their children to foreign educational institutions. The fees, no matter how exorbitant, are also seen as a guarantee of a premium education. The sob stories of the biter experiences of many students who have succumbed to the foreign lure are common in Kathmandu today. The slipshod administration of these 'foreign' intuitions and their affiliation to little-known and even non-existent universities have led to hundreds of unemployed students waling the streets in desperation while their parents are tying to figure out the damage done to their pockets.

Thankfully the increase of good schools and colleges in Nepal has curbed this exodus of students to a considerable degree. Parents and students are now empowered with many options. The range of higher education is increasingly steadily. The onus is now on the students to decide wisely.

Students and parents should realise the enormity of this task. In case there any doubts, professional help should be taken. Student counseling has come a long way and its presence in almost everyday educational institution in the west has stressed on the necessity for students' needs to be addressed with professionalism and accuracy. The services of a skilled and unbiased counselor should be employed without any hesitation.



Source: WAVE Magazine


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