With Delhi University cutoffs set to take over newspaper headlines across the country, become the punch line of corny jokes and contribute significantly to the Internet meme industry as it does every year, one has to wonder what impact these sky-high cutoffs have on aspirants and students of the university alike. Do students in the eleventh and twelfth get driven with ambition to get that 98% or just simply throw in the towel and resort to private universities or foreign education if they can afford it? On the other hand do students on the other side of the cutoff look back on their time in DU and feel that all the hard work was worth it in the end or that DU has failed to meet their expectations on every note? The answers to both of these questions may be subjective but they do help one to decide whether DU is indeed the ‘number 1 university of the country’ as they used to so proudly declare on their official website, and is implied by their rising cutoffs every year.
With the exception of some, it is pretty well known that most of the colleges still promote an archaic era of education whether it is the outdated material they teach in certain courses or the state of their classrooms and campuses. Most colleges do not provide any exposure to students in terms of encouraging extra curricular activities, foreign exchange programs or research work but instead penalise them in Internal Assessments giving them a flat zero out of five for lack of attendance or not scheduling retests on any grounds whatsoever.
There are always students in DU who are seen in college once in a blue moon who cite these very reasons for hating college life and wishing they were elsewhere but every college society or friend circle has an equal (if not larger) number of individuals whose love for the university and pride to be a part of it increases every year. These optimists embrace the freedom given to them by joining new societies every year in order to explore different fields and develop their skill sets, set realistic expectations of what the education offers and as a result find themselves performing a lot better than others. The fact that they study in classes filled with school toppers and academic over-achievers further motivates these individuals to study harder and do better. Furthermore they constantly remind themselves of the brand value that the university and its colleges carry which is what causes them to believe that the hard work and effort they put in one, two or even three years ago was indeed worth it.
It is one thing to feel pride in being a part of the ‘number 1 University of the country’ but it is quite another matter when it comes to the university preparing its students for the challenges of life after college. It is important for the educationists behind DU to think more pragmatically in terms of how global and relevant an education is being provided to the students and how well-rounded the individual who passes out of DU after three years of college actually is. If that is achieved then more and more students will be motivated to work towards securing that 98% and the students who constantly criticise and complain about the system cannot deny that three years of DU did not have a positive impact on their growth and development as individuals.
Image credits: www.hindustantimes.com