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In 5th grade, I wanted to be an army officer. In 8th grade, I started to enjoy science. But it was only in 10th grade that I figured exactly what I wanted to study and become in life. I spent a fair amount of time researching and visited several career counselors before making the big choice for my future. Several permutations later, I decided to take up the Humanities stream, a decision that raised a lot of eyebrows.
Even today, Science as a stream trends as the most favoured, most sought after career choice among Indian parents for children to pursue after Grade 10. It might be understandable, given that it allows so many career options.
Yet, I believe the true requirement for children to make their career choices is knowledge – the knowledge that all parents need to have. My parents were well aware of Humanities, the subjects and opportunities that the stream offered. So, I got lucky. They were very supportive of my decision to take it up.
But many of my friends weren’t so fortunate. There were some who wanted to study music and arts, but parental pressure and the cut-throat competition ended up forcing them into the Science stream.
Parents, families and societies need to be more open and receptive to alternate career choices for children. Ask questions, understand why your child makes a certain choice, build your knowledge on the subject and provide guidance and support for your children – that would ensure every child has the best means to achieve every single dream he/she dreams of.
Puruijit is 16 years old and is currently studying Humanities at Christ College, Bengaluru and wants to pursue a Masters in Economics to become a Financial Analyst.