Figure: Crossroads Leading Different Destinations – Choose before You Step Ahead

In Bangladesh, a towering number of students are getting enrolled into the university level education every year which is unconditionally a positive sign for our education sector. According to the UGC Report 2018, 1179796 students are pursuing their graduation, post-graduation, and doctoral degrees from the public, and private universities in Bangladesh. [1]

After passing the HSC (Higher Secondary Certificate) exam, a student is supposed to get enrolled into a university for completing the higher studies. The admission process is pretty cumbersome which is out of today’s context, and we will not talk about it in this discussion. When a student gets admitted into any universities of Bangladesh (regardless of whether it is a public university, or a private university) on the basis of his/her performed outcome in the admission test along with the combined GPA (Grade Point Average) achieved in the SSC (Secondary School Certificate) exam, and the HSC (Higher Secondary Certificate) exam, he/she is asked to provide a first choice about the desired subject on which he/she is willing to get enrolled. Here comes the crucial point on which I would urge you to put forward your concentrated emphasis, and logical analysis. Have you ever asked yourself – “how many of the newly admitted undergrad students give the first choice according to what they truly want to study in”? A study conducted upon a group of 500 students in the Northern Vietnam who were admitted to different universities in 2019 revealed that only 160 students out of the 500 students submitted their first choice as per their own willingness, and zeal. AFAIK, there’s no surveys that have happened to be conducted in Bangladesh to find out the percentage of the students’ self-willingness to choose for their first subject.

Now, when a student in Bangladesh (contextually emphasized, it might be held true in elsewhere as well) grows up by hearing – “you would need be a doctor, or an engineer, or a teacher, or a service worker, or anything else” from his/her parents, or relatives, or next door neighbors; a psychological complexion is forced to be developed into his/her minds which severely impacts the ability to choose, and decide his/her career path. Clinical psychologists refer this as an academic mental persuasion. They disclose a startling fact saying that this may lead many students to a prolonged unidentified paranoia. If a student becomes a teacher by the willingness being emanated from his/her parents, or relatives, it is obvious in most of the cases that his/her pedagogy will fail somehow to build a potential career of a student. It can be assumed to be true (most like to be true) in countless related cases as well.

It is high time we raised concern over the aforementioned issue. Students should be allowed to decide their desired subject(s) during the period of admission into the universities. Parents should not unintentionally let their children converge into the crossroads of their career paths. Nowadays, it is not cumbersome to detect the assumed inherent inclination of a child to a specific subject matter. Tons of research works have been conducted on this aspect. Experts are suggested to elucidate, and illuminate this unheard mental exigency with proper care. Let us not think about the consequences before striving our concerted efforts to solve this abstract conundrum, and help our young generations decide what they wish to decide. Salvador Domingo Felipe Jacinto Dalí i Domènech (a Spanish surrealist artist) was perhaps right – “Have no fear of perfection – you will never reach it”.

Thank you so much, ladies, and gentleman for your mental presence (most important one yet unnoticed!) while reading my written observations. Take care of yourselves, and stay safe.