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  • Building Bonds that go beyond Verbal Communication:  As is rightly said by Henry Longfellow, “music is the universal language of Mankind” and the music society is the perfect example of this statement. We all hail from different states, eat different food, have different cultural backgrounds and speak different languages which at times becomes a barrier in initiating a conversation and befriending each other. For that matter, A Punjabi girl (trained in Jazz guitar) might have some troubles bonding with a Keralite guy (a trained Carnatic vocalist) and won’t have many things in common when it comes to having a verbal communication. But both of them would be equally enchanted and amused when the jazz guitarist jams to the Carnatic Symphonies establishing a bond that transcends the cultural divide.
  • Team work: This notion might not sound as exclusive to the music society as the previous one, but trust me, it is. Music forms like acapella performances which include a group of 10-20 vocalists performing together without any instrumental aid, requires immense coordination. Unlike a pyramidal structure which has its base as the most crucial part, an acapella has a musical structure as dynamic and fragile as a house of cards where every singer has an equally important role to play to maintain the overall balance. ( One mistake and, Pffftt!)
  • What you do is also your means of recreation:  Unlike certain societies where people, after hours of working, take breaks to relax, we do something we’ve been doing for hours already. We play more. So it’s very common for musicians to break into random jamming sessions and have a small fling, playing their favourite melodies when they wish to take a break.
  • You may also find your Alter Ego:  We tend to like and connect with people with similar tastes in literature, sports etc. Every musician has his or her unique way of composing and improvising. But the moment you realize that the person you’re jamming with has a similar composing / improvising sense, you tend to have an inexplicable chemistry, an instant connection which often, later establishes and compliments strong friendships.
  • Altercation regarding grants and equipment:  An integral part of the music society is pleading for grants and permission to use college’s sound equipment, auditorium etc. You’re really lucky if you have cooperative cultural secretaries but if not, boy! you’re going to have a tough time!
  • Being a part of the music society demands commitment in terms of practice routines. It demands discipline and often causes discomfort at times, as you have to practice in public places, in the scorching heat even when colleges are closed. (And also Because A/C Jampads charge money.) But what it gives you in return is much more than it asks for. A family like experience, great musical minds to work with and friendships that go beyond cultural barriers.   Feature Image Credits- http://www.mercurynews.com/business/ci_29172264/employers-bend-over-backward-shower-their-workers-unusual Aditya Narang [email protected]]]>

    Being in a Photography/Visual Arts society is an enthralling and educating experience to say the least. Being in the company of people who know the skills of photography, and who are ready to teach and most importantly learn, has made me appreciate the beauty of insignificant things.

    This is what my experience has been like being in The Darkroom, the visual arts society of Shaheed Sukhdev College of Business Studies. (We proudly call ourselves a visual arts society because we teach, share and set forth the spirit of not only photography, but graphic designing and film-making as well)

    1.) Photowalks to the best spots in and around Delhi

    Our craving to capture architectural beauty drives us all around Delhi; from Humayun’s Tomb to Feroz Shah Kotla Fort to Hauz Khas. Sometimes the photowalks happen in crowded yet colourful places like Chandni Chowk which give us abundant human subjects to capture.

    2.) Knowledge of DSLR, even when you don’t have one

    When I joined my society, I didn’t even know what the full form of a DSLR was (many of us still don’t know, that’s a fact) but eventually we start learning how to operate a DSLR even when we don’t own one. Some of us even save up money to buy it. More than the intuitiveness, I guess it’s the fact that our non-photographer friends who force us to learn about DSLRs. Earlier when my friends used to ask me about DSLRs, I just used to tell them something out of Wikipedia.

    3.) Keeping track of photography society pages on Facebook

    An arduous task is to keep track of different competitions that come up on Facebook. Most of us have a competitions database but miserably fail to update it. Sometimes we just stalk a particular society’s facebook page until they post a competition.

    4.) Sharing the cameras in competitions

    When on-the-spot photography competitions happen (mostly during the fest season), we sometimes have just one camera and 4 participants. But, we somehow manage to submit every photo.

    5.) Where’s my tripod? Where’s my memory card?

    We keep losing our stuff for some reason, either things get swapped with another person in the society, or we just lose our stuff altogether.

    Kartikeya Bhatotia
    [email protected]

    Related: Read more from the life at Delhi University series here

     What sets it apart?

    The choreography societies were formed from 2002, a young conception, it is currently under operation in colleges such as Sri Venkateswara College, Lady Shri Ram College, Hindu, Hansraj, Kirori Mal, Gargi College, Kamala Nehru College, Netaji Subhas Institute of Technology (NSIT) and Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi (IIT-D) Students choreograph their production often with the help from professional dance choreographers. The piece is built around a theme or a story based on social issues, mythologies, and fiction while others take inspirations from movies and books.  It is story telling in the form of dance; abstract yet meaningful. The ten-minute production is accompanied by a voice over in the beginning and in the end, that explains the theme and concludes it respectively.

     Not just a hobby

    Being a member of the dance society, it is both, physically and mentally challenging. With practices stretching for as long as six hours it is no more just a casual hobby. In school, dances would be put up in 2 days time; college productions on the other hand, are a result of months of training, planning and choreography. Since it involves a storyline, students have to come up with ideas and concepts and build them in such a way that they leave an impact on the audience.

     Blood, Gut and Sweat

    Initial months consist of rigorous training and stamina building. Blood, sweat and injuries are an every day passing thing, the body is perpetually agonized by sores and clots with pain in places you could never imagine. And yet, the members remain passionate and turn up day after day for the love of dance.

     The Challenge

    It is important to have dancers that exhibit the same level of experience and training when on stage, decreasing the disparity between first, second an third years, which in fact, is natural. There is always an effort in making these differences less apparent and bringing the dancers to, if not same, but to at least a similar level.

     Just Friends Or…

    There is no body you see more than your society members. You spend almost quarter of your day with them, everyday for 6 months. These people become your friends and eventually, the more clichéd, family. Most often your best friend would be your co society member and your purpose coming to college changes from your academic subject to your society. There is natural bonding just by the virtue of being around each other all the time and sharing memories from the outstation trips and DU festivals.

     All Rounder Much?

    A dancer of the dance society is not only good at dancing but also other facets such as multitasking, crisis management and teamwork. Learning here is beyond dance, extending to life in general. The society builds you as an independent, dedicated, empathetic person, while also increasing your social circle. The fun and good times sneaked between practices always remain with you. It’s a place that makes you feel bad for the people who aren’t a part of this crazy rollercoaster. Being a member of the dance society, commitment, is the key for realizing your growth along with hard work and practice. Each day counts. The strenuous dance schedules and long hours of practice can sometimes take a toll, both on the body and studies. Time management is integral to work out a balance among various spheres but in the end, the magic of stage and lights shared with your tribe make it all worthwhile. [gallery columns="1" size="full" ids="36617,36618"] In pictures: Nritya, the choreography society of SVC Shefali Bharati [email protected]]]>

    Christopher Hitchens once remarked, “Time spent arguing is, oddly enough, almost never wasted.
    And rightly so, for debating in DU is one of the most gratifying and fruitful activities. In school, debating is one of those things that students pursue outside their curriculum, as a leisure activity. In college however, debating is more than just a hobby. For many, debating becomes life itself. That, in a nutshell, highlights the intensity and passion with which people debate in DU; the colossal time that it consumes; and the euphoria of achievement that it is capable of bringing to the winners.

    Ignorant freshers often believe that their experiences from MUNs and school level debating are sufficient for conquering the DU debating scene. But such complacency is the biggest myth attached to the DebSoc. Firstly, every college debating society conducts trials for freshers, where the main criteria for selection is a person’s ability to reason, articulate and argue.  So no fresher will ever be prejudiced against the lack of prior debating experience.  Secondly, every society invests at least a month in training their newest members in different forms and styles, indoctrinating nuanced arguments and holding mock debates. This training period goes a long way in prepping the rookie debaters for their initial tournaments (eg: Fresher tournaments).Thereafter, the credentials of a debater will solely depend on his participation, potential and growth.

    There are several reasons why you should consider taking up debating in college. Debating will help rid you of your inhibitions, make you more knowledgeable, teach you how to cajole people in the cleverest of ways, widen your ability to reason with logic and give you a college life worth experiencing.

    But before you immerse yourself in the world of DU Debating, here are five things to know about the Debsoc ethos:

    A. Killer Kompetition
    The circuit doesn’t have an age bar and quite often, you might land up in a sticky situation where you, as team of fucchas, are debating against stalwarts from Law Faculty and DSE, people who are almost three years greater than you in age and experience. This can be extremely intimidating, especially if the seniors take you as a joke. Winning in such scenarios is almost next to impossible. The best thing to do then is to take the debate as a learning experience. Instead of getting discouraged by failure, keep up the perseverance and debate with panache! Who knows, maybe a couple of months later, when faced with the same team of titans, you cream your opponents. Or more realistically, at least manage to put up a decent fight!

    B. Break Night Parties
    When you’re in the debating society, exciting break night lore will form a substantial part of the legacy that you will receive from your seniors. Break night parties are one of the two (the other being the hefty cash prizes) things that draw senior debaters to a tournament. Senior participation decides the reputation of a tournament, and thus it is absolutely essential to host an extravagant break night party. Debaters are hedonists; that is the crooked truth.

    Break night parties are like after parties: exclusive and lavish, anything and everything worth talking about happens here! Debaters let loose and enjoy the music, food and other gifts of Dionysius. After attending a break night party, you will realise (and possibly relish) that you belong to an elite society of people who are smart, yet know how to enjoy the finer things in life. Your first break night party will become a defining moment in your debating life and certainly a memory that you will cherish otherwise as well.

    C.  The freaky outstations
    For a debater, outstation tournaments are equally, if not more, important than DU tournaments and your seniors in the society will insist that your participation is well rounded. But getting permission from your parents, making arrangements for transportation and accommodation and saving for expected expenses are arduous tasks. Missing out on such tournaments can put you legions behind and hurt your growth. Outstations are usually a big no for debaters from conservative families. But those who have attended outstation tournaments will unanimously agree that an outstation tournament is like a never ending break night party: a perfect balance between work and play!

    D. My way or the Highway
    To survive in the circuit, you must be adept in one of the following two things: A. You must either possess tremendous knowledge about several issues like International Relations (IR), Economics, Third Gender Rights, Feminism etc OR B.You must make the other person believe that you possess in depth knowledge about these things. Not that you can faff your way to the finals. But a decent level of knowledge, complemented by a receptive mind, quick thinking and cocky smartness, can help you argue your way through the toughest and slimiest of motions. When all else fails, smartness will double up as a reliable weapon.

    E. Family, not society
    Most tournaments happen over a span of three to four days and take up almost six to seven hours per day. On non-tournament days, most debaters spend their time in intra and inter societal mock debates. Some others can be found in their groups, discussing raging issues in the library or just chilling in the college canteen. When you spend so much time with your society, members become the best of friends in no time. The bond that you share with your fellow debaters is inexplicable.It’s so tight and lasting that you might as well be a part of a family. Truly, DebSoc Bonhomie is a thing of legends.

    I wouldn’t be exaggerating if I were to say that the debating society is the object of desire of every fresher. The glamour, the talent and the intellect are sure to lure you right in!

    But a word of caution: Join the DebSoc,but join it for keeps. Invest your effort if you intend on staying; don’t join the society if you want instant results and lack patience. Debating requires time and commitment, because you’ll take at least a year to learn the tricks of the trade, another year to establish yourself in the circuit, and if you’re one of those bright bulbs, then you’ll finally come around to shining in your third year.

    So, if you’re one of those toughies who have mastered the art of determination and perseverance, join the debating society to develop a skill set that will help you in every phase of your life.

    Kriti Sharma
    [email protected]

    Christopher Hitchens once remarked, “Time spent arguing is, oddly enough, almost never wasted.
    And rightly so, for debating in DU is one of the most gratifying and fruitful activities. In school, debating is one of those things that students pursue outside their curriculum, as a leisure activity. In college however, debating is more than just a hobby. For many, debating becomes life itself. That, in a nutshell, highlights the intensity and passion with which people debate in DU; the colossal time that it consumes; and the euphoria of achievement that it is capable of bringing to the winners.

    Ignorant freshers often believe that their experiences from MUNs and school level debating are sufficient for conquering the DU debating scene. But such complacency is the biggest myth attached to the DebSoc. Firstly, every college debating society conducts trials for freshers, where the main criteria for selection is a person’s ability to reason, articulate and argue.  So no fresher will ever be prejudiced against the lack of prior debating experience.  Secondly, every society invests at least a month in training their newest members in different forms and styles, indoctrinating nuanced arguments and holding mock debates. This training period goes a long way in prepping the rookie debaters for their initial tournaments (eg: Fresher tournaments).Thereafter, the credentials of a debater will solely depend on his participation, potential and growth.

    There are several reasons why you should consider taking up debating in college. Debating will help rid you of your inhibitions, make you more knowledgeable, teach you how to cajole people in the cleverest of ways, widen your ability to reason with logic and give you a college life worth experiencing.

    But before you immerse yourself in the world of DU Debating, here are five things to know about the Debsoc ethos:

    A. Killer Kompetition
    The circuit doesn’t have an age bar and quite often, you might land up in a sticky situation where you, as team of fucchas, are debating against stalwarts from Law Faculty and DSE, people who are almost three years greater than you in age and experience. This can be extremely intimidating, especially if the seniors take you as a joke. Winning in such scenarios is almost next to impossible. The best thing to do then is to take the debate as a learning experience. Instead of getting discouraged by failure, keep up the perseverance and debate with panache! Who knows, maybe a couple of months later, when faced with the same team of titans, you cream your opponents. Or more realistically, at least manage to put up a decent fight!

    B. Break Night Parties
    When you’re in the debating society, exciting break night lore will form a substantial part of the legacy that you will receive from your seniors. Break night parties are one of the two (the other being the hefty cash prizes) things that draw senior debaters to a tournament. Senior participation decides the reputation of a tournament, and thus it is absolutely essential to host an extravagant break night party. Debaters are hedonists; that is the crooked truth.

    Break night parties are like after parties: exclusive and lavish, anything and everything worth talking about happens here! Debaters let loose and enjoy the music, food and other gifts of Dionysius. After attending a break night party, you will realise (and possibly relish) that you belong to an elite society of people who are smart, yet know how to enjoy the finer things in life. Your first break night party will become a defining moment in your debating life and certainly a memory that you will cherish otherwise as well.

    C.  The freaky outstations
    For a debater, outstation tournaments are equally, if not more, important than DU tournaments and your seniors in the society will insist that your participation is well rounded. But getting permission from your parents, making arrangements for transportation and accommodation and saving for expected expenses are arduous tasks. Missing out on such tournaments can put you legions behind and hurt your growth. Outstations are usually a big no for debaters from conservative families. But those who have attended outstation tournaments will unanimously agree that an outstation tournament is like a never ending break night party: a perfect balance between work and play!

    D. My way or the Highway
    To survive in the circuit, you must be adept in one of the following two things: A. You must either possess tremendous knowledge about several issues like International Relations (IR), Economics, Third Gender Rights, Feminism etc OR B.You must make the other person believe that you possess in depth knowledge about these things. Not that you can faff your way to the finals. But a decent level of knowledge, complemented by a receptive mind, quick thinking and cocky smartness, can help you argue your way through the toughest and slimiest of motions. When all else fails, smartness will double up as a reliable weapon.

    E. Family, not society
    Most tournaments happen over a span of three to four days and take up almost six to seven hours per day. On non-tournament days, most debaters spend their time in intra and inter societal mock debates. Some others can be found in their groups, discussing raging issues in the library or just chilling in the college canteen. When you spend so much time with your society, members become the best of friends in no time. The bond that you share with your fellow debaters is inexplicable.It’s so tight and lasting that you might as well be a part of a family. Truly, DebSoc Bonhomie is a thing of legends.

    I wouldn’t be exaggerating if I were to say that the debating society is the object of desire of every fresher. The glamour, the talent and the intellect are sure to lure you right in!

    But a word of caution: Join the DebSoc,but join it for keeps. Invest your effort if you intend on staying; don’t join the society if you want instant results and lack patience. Debating requires time and commitment, because you’ll take at least a year to learn the tricks of the trade, another year to establish yourself in the circuit, and if you’re one of those bright bulbs, then you’ll finally come around to shining in your third year.

    So, if you’re one of those toughies who have mastered the art of determination and perseverance, join the debating society to develop a skill set that will help you in every phase of your life.

    Kriti Sharma
    [email protected]

    Related: Read more from the life at Delhi University series here

     What sets it apart?

    The choreography societies were formed from 2002, a young conception, it is currently under operation in colleges such as Sri Venkateswara College, Lady Shri Ram College, Hindu, Hansraj, Kirori Mal, Gargi College, Kamala Nehru College, Netaji Subhas Institute of Technology (NSIT) and Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi (IIT-D) Students choreograph their production often with the help from professional dance choreographers. The piece is built around a theme or a story based on social issues, mythologies, and fiction while others take inspirations from movies and books.  It is story telling in the form of dance; abstract yet meaningful. The ten-minute production is accompanied by a voice over in the beginning and in the end, that explains the theme and concludes it respectively.

     Not just a hobby

    Being a member of the dance society, it is both, physically and mentally challenging. With practices stretching for as long as six hours it is no more just a casual hobby. In school, dances would be put up in 2 days time; college productions on the other hand, are a result of months of training, planning and choreography. Since it involves a storyline, students have to come up with ideas and concepts and build them in such a way that they leave an impact on the audience.

     Blood, Gut and Sweat

    Initial months consist of rigorous training and stamina building. Blood, sweat and injuries are an every day passing thing, the body is perpetually agonized by sores and clots with pain in places you could never imagine. And yet, the members remain passionate and turn up day after day for the love of dance.

     The Challenge

    It is important to have dancers that exhibit the same level of experience and training when on stage, decreasing the disparity between first, second an third years, which in fact, is natural. There is always an effort in making these differences less apparent and bringing the dancers to, if not same, but to at least a similar level.

     Just Friends Or…

    There is no body you see more than your society members. You spend almost quarter of your day with them, everyday for 6 months. These people become your friends and eventually, the more clichéd, family. Most often your best friend would be your co society member and your purpose coming to college changes from your academic subject to your society. There is natural bonding just by the virtue of being around each other all the time and sharing memories from the outstation trips and DU festivals.

     All Rounder Much?

    A dancer of the dance society is not only good at dancing but also other facets such as multitasking, crisis management and teamwork. Learning here is beyond dance, extending to life in general. The society builds you as an independent, dedicated, empathetic person, while also increasing your social circle. The fun and good times sneaked between practices always remain with you. It’s a place that makes you feel bad for the people who aren’t a part of this crazy rollercoaster. Being a member of the dance society, commitment, is the key for realizing your growth along with hard work and practice. Each day counts. The strenuous dance schedules and long hours of practice can sometimes take a toll, both on the body and studies. Time management is integral to work out a balance among various spheres but in the end, the magic of stage and lights shared with your tribe make it all worthwhile.     [gallery columns="1" size="full" ids="36617,36618"]   In pictures: Nritya, the choreography society of SVC Shefali Bharati [email protected]]]>

    Enactus is an international organisation that promotes social entrepreneurship in colleges. More than 20 Delhi University colleges have an Enactus chapter in their college. Each chapter starts with a well researched business plan to advocate assistance and better standard of living provisions for a target community by employing them in a prospective sustainable venture. As easy as it sounds, that is certainly not the case during the implementation of the venture. However,  this challenge is set to provide a kick to the students who are a part of this society. Here are 5 vital things you will experience while you are a part of an Enactus chapter in your college :

     

    • Without drive, your contributions are futile: This is probably the most important experience you’ll have being a part of an Enactus chapter. Without drive, empathy and willingness to assist the community you have targeted, your team’s efficiency will not be maximised. As long as you do not have the hunger to run that extra mile, to create a good rapport with the community, to really care for them you will not be as close to meeting your community’s needs or making your venture as sustainable as you would have liked.

     

    • Team work is essential – While getting into an Enactus society is tough, the contributions after being selected end up being abysmal for a majority of applicants. This is sometimes because of the lack of intent to gel with the vast number of one’s peers. While there might be people from other courses, your intent should be to mix with everyone and learn as much as possible. This is the only way by which you can ensure that your opinions are being heard and debated upon. This also makes it easier for the team to acknowledge a decision taken by everyone.

     

    • Not everybody wants college children giving advice to them: Once you’ve identified your community, you’ll often find them hesitant to subscribe to your business model. Especially when they are ‘content’ with their current livelihood. This is an important lesson that you’ll end up learning. The orthodox belief of communities being ‘grateful’ to you for bringing in innovative ideas is certainly not the case. That respect has to be earned with persistence of rapport building activities.

     

    • Its not just a society;It is your venture: While people may criticize you for being just a college society, and not being a ‘serious’ venture, you’ll learn that it is certainly not the case. Every Enactus chapter has to face as many hindrances as any other business. You start with zero funds, zero external support and an experimental business model. You have different departments like any other organisation. You also have to take as much risks as any other business.

     

    • Networking and Public Relations is extremely essential: Every Enactus chapter needs to reach out to as many people as possible. The more you reach out, the more chances you have of getting aid, assistance and guidance from clients, well wishers and fellow organisations. More networking leads to a lot more opportunities. When these opportunities are utilised, there is an increased chance of success.

     

    Being a part of an Enactus team is extremely educative and fun. However, without full commitment you cannot expect success. Hence you have to strive and take your duties as a challenge and not a burden.

     

    Ishaan Sengupta

    [email protected]

    Picture Credits:- enactus.org

    Lights! Camera! Action! Despite this run of the mill, clichéd description, believe me, that is precisely how a day in a mass media student’s life starts. After pulling off a late nighter: writing a story, watching a movie, reading a deeply engrossing book or indulging in investigavtive journalism when we finally fall asleep it is mostly after the clock strikes midnight and come morning we usually need a hundred watt light right in our faces or a bucket of ice cold water, if you will, to wake us up. Then next step in line is to shake enough sense into ourselves to find our way to 31, Shamnath Marg known only to the IPians and their close friends as Indraprastha College for Women.

    As for camera and action, these two go hand in hand after all we are known to document each and every moment of our lives through our vast and inspiring presence on the social media. One thing that forms a vital brick of our department is our team spirit and the affection we hold for each other, it is like a close knit family of about two hundred and fifty female students. The quote – “One for all and all for one,” truly belongs to the Multi Media and Mass Communication department.

    An almost serendipitous play of destiny led me to join this course last year and there have been no regrets ever since. Despite an obvious concern for obscurity, the college finds itself shrouded in given its location and negligible social presence, all the mass media students lead a pretty chilled out life which might not be the envy of many but is a reason enough for them to be happy.

    The queson “Why is ‘BMMMC’ better than any other mass communication course offered by various other Institutes in and around Delhi?” can be answered in numerous ways. One of the many being, the practical exposure we get through this course makes us industry ready in about three years me, leaving us the opon of either pursuing our career in one of the many facets of the media world or going forward with higher studies which would further add shine to our already luminous prospects.

    Related: Read more from the Life at Delhi University series here

    1.What does it take to become a media student?

    Come for admissions wearing your love for media (books, magazines, movies, TV shows, documentaries, photography) on your sleeve and hopefully your curious nature and potential to learn would sail you through the three amazing but tedious years of BMMMC life.

    2.One too many

    I don’t think a lot of people out there know that media is a plural of medium so the number of mediums that come under the word media and therefore the number of fields available to us for forging our career is crazy. I spent most of my first year trying to figure out my vocation – Do I write well, can I become a reporter or a travel journalist? Becoming a photographer would be so rad; taking up job as a Public Relation person will not be that bad either, I mean I meet new people all the time and have I ever met anybody more amiable than myself? After spending more than a year contemplating this overwhelming list of options, I am still not sure of what I want to do.

    3.Jai Ho Yogi Ma’am Ki

    Dr. Manasvini M. Yogi is the living breathing soul of our Department. Her grit, patience and her immense love for the course has made it such a success. Everybody loves and dreads her in equal measure. The marathon we run every morning from the metro station to the doors of the studio to a end her class becomes the highlight of our day. Then on days when unfortunately we lose the race against me and find ourselves locked outside class, we find ourselves consoling each other with jerky smiles and canteen food.

    4.Our version of heaven

    The audio visual studio also known as The Studio is the safe haven of BMMMC students for most part of the year. Since it is the only other room except for the library (too crowded) and AV room (perpetually locked) that grants the students the cool and refreshing air of AC in the sultry summer of Delhi, you will always find a crowd of media students there; huddled together pondering feminism, gossiping or watching videos.

    5.News Paper A. K. A. Holy Bible of media students

    Never read a newspaper before? What have you been doing your entire life child? Trust me, this is the kind of rant you will be subjected to when you enter BMMMC. The kind of humiliation this class piles onto you would give you the movation to read tomorrow’s paper today, if it were possible. All our teachers are hell bent on convincing us of the fact that reading newspaper everyday is a life alarming acon, forget brushing, reading a newspaper is what you should wake up to every day for the rest of your life. This is what you signed up for as a media student, isn’t it?

    Image Credits: myarena.com

    Guest Post by Sonali from Indraprastha College for Women

    ]]>

    Christopher Hitchens once remarked, “Time spent arguing is, oddly enough, almost never wasted.”
    And rightly so, for debating in DU is one of the most gratifying and fruitful activities. In school, debating is one of those things that students pursue outside their curriculum, as a leisure activity. In college however, debating is more than just a hobby. For many, debating becomes life itself. That, in a nutshell, highlights the intensity and passion with which people debate in DU; the colossal time that it consumes; and the euphoria of achievement that it is capable of bringing to the winners.

    Ignorant freshers often believe that their experiences from MUNs and school level debating are sufficient for conquering the DU debating scene. But such complacency is the biggest myth attached to the DebSoc. Firstly, every college debating society conducts trials for freshers, where the main criteria for selection is a person’s ability to reason, articulate and argue.  So no fresher will ever be prejudiced against the lack of prior debating experience.  Secondly, every society invests at least a month in training their newest members in different forms and styles, indoctrinating nuanced arguments and holding mock debates. This training period goes a long way in prepping the rookie debaters for their initial tournaments (eg: Fresher tournaments).Thereafter, the credentials of a debater will solely depend on his participation, potential and growth.

    There are several reasons why you should consider taking up debating in college. Debating will help rid you of your inhibitions, make you more knowledgeable, teach you how to cajole people in the cleverest of ways, widen your ability to reason with logic and give you a college life worth experiencing.

    But before you immerse yourself in the world of DU Debating, here are five things to know about the Debsoc ethos:

    A. Killer Kompetition
    The circuit doesn’t have an age bar and quite often, you might land up in a sticky situation where you, as team of fucchas, are debating against stalwarts from Law Faculty and DSE, people who are almost three years greater than you in age and experience. This can be extremely intimidating, especially if the seniors take you as a joke. Winning in such scenarios is almost next to impossible. The best thing to do then is to take the debate as a learning experience. Instead of getting discouraged by failure, keep up the perseverance and debate with panache! Who knows, maybe a couple of months later, when faced with the same team of titans, you cream your opponents. Or more realistically, at least manage to put up a decent fight!

    B. Break Night Parties
    When you’re in the debating society, exciting break night lore will form a substantial part of the legacy that you will receive from your seniors. Break night parties are one of the two (the other being the hefty cash prizes) things that draw senior debaters to a tournament. Senior participation decides the reputation of a tournament, and thus it is absolutely essential to host an extravagant break night party. Debaters are hedonists; that is the crooked truth.

    Break night parties are like after parties: exclusive and lavish, anything and everything worth talking about happens here! Debaters let loose and enjoy the music, food and other gifts of Dionysius. After attending a break night party, you will realise (and possibly relish) that you belong to an elite society of people who are smart, yet know how to enjoy the finer things in life. Your first break night party will become a defining moment in your debating life and certainly a memory that you will cherish otherwise as well.

    C.  The freaky outstations
    For a debater, outstation tournaments are equally, if not more, important than DU tournaments and your seniors in the society will insist that your participation is well rounded. But getting permission from your parents, making arrangements for transportation and accommodation and saving for expected expenses are arduous tasks. Missing out on such tournaments can put you legions behind and hurt your growth. Outstations are usually a big no for debaters from conservative families. But those who have attended outstation tournaments will unanimously agree that an outstation tournament is like a never ending break night party: a perfect balance between work and play!

    D. My way or the Highway
    To survive in the circuit, you must be adept in one of the following two things: A. You must either possess tremendous knowledge about several issues like International Relations (IR), Economics, Third Gender Rights, Feminism etc OR B.You must make the other person believe that you possess in depth knowledge about these things. Not that you can faff your way to the finals. But a decent level of knowledge, complemented by a receptive mind, quick thinking and cocky smartness, can help you argue your way through the toughest and slimiest of motions. When all else fails, smartness will double up as a reliable weapon.

    E. Family, not society
    Most tournaments happen over a span of three to four days and take up almost six to seven hours per day. On non-tournament days, most debaters spend their time in intra and inter societal mock debates. Some others can be found in their groups, discussing raging issues in the library or just chilling in the college canteen. When you spend so much time with your society, members become the best of friends in no time. The bond that you share with your fellow debaters is inexplicable.It’s so tight and lasting that you might as well be a part of a family. Truly, DebSoc Bonhomie is a thing of legends.

    I wouldn’t be exaggerating if I were to say that the debating society is the object of desire of every fresher. The glamour, the talent and the intellect are sure to lure you right in!

    But a word of caution: Join the DebSoc,but join it for keeps. Invest your effort if you intend on staying; don’t join the society if you want instant results and lack patience. Debating requires time and commitment, because you’ll take at least a year to learn the tricks of the trade, another year to establish yourself in the circuit, and if you’re one of those bright bulbs, then you’ll finally come around to shining in your third year.

    So, if you’re one of those toughies who have mastered the art of determination and perseverance, join the debating society to develop a skill set that will help you in every phase of your life.

    Kriti Sharma
    [email protected]

    1. Sky-high cut-offs depreciate the value of your marks. Depreciation happens for real. Your score a decent 95% after all the hard-work in your board exams, and end up nowhere near the college of your choice. For a commerce student, admission to a DU college of one’s liking is perhaps harder than a ticket to the moon. Getting into SRCC is the litmus test for the toppers, and with the rocketing cut-offs, not many pass this test. Which means you land up in a college which wasn’t even on your list when you first set your foot in the admissions arena. Not just that, you’ll be reminded of this reality by your relatives and even your professors time and again.

    2. B.Com is never enough alone.

    Doing B.Com and learning about accounts, marketing, finance, advertising, laws and whatnot doesn’t seem to suffice as a curriculum. There comes a volley of questions, “Beta, CA bhi kar rahe ho?”, “Iske baad CS karoge ya CA?” you’ll be made to feel doing B.Com Honours alone is not enough and that you are wasting time if CA/CS/CWA is not in your things-to-do. And this is not it. If you come across questions that predict your career trajectory, don’t be bogged down by the stereotype. “Beta, B.Com ke baad MBA? Coaching le rahe ho?” No aunty, will you help me crack CAT?

    3. You start reading business and commerce newspapers and journals

    You either start reading these of your own accord, because frankly, things make less sense in class if you are not aware of the world of commerce, business and economics, or you have been advised to read these by your professors so many times, that you give in to their incessant goads. Whatever be the stimulus, pretty soon you are devouring the pages of Economic Times, or the Business section of magazines, and if you turn out to be a really big business geek, you’ll be found within the pages of a business/commerce journal, reading research papers, and writing your own. This knowledge also comes in handy when you participate in commerce fests: case study competitions, business challenges, business plan competitions, paper presentations… you get the drift.

    4. Economics is a clingy sister.

    You’re never asked about your next favourite subject after commerce. Reason? It has to be economics. Add them to the list of stereotypes, but this is sadly true. If the curriculum asks you to choose a minor subject, it is a farce because you don’t really have a choice. You’ll end up studying economics. It is that clingy sister who wouldn’t let go of you. Granted, economics as a discipline is the nearest to commerce and the subject matter is related, but lack of choice is just brutal.

    5. Commerce students? Ruthless number-crunchers

    One, people will think of you as future corporate honchos who pursue profits ruthlessly. Tell them you have a whole paper on Business ethics.  Second, commerce for them is almost synonymous with accounts. So your future should look like a bespectacled geek who is perennially glued to Tally. Only, we commerce students are spoilt for choice; and advertising, marketing, law are far more glamorous professions than they are made out to be. Also, they aren’t just about accounts, as is clear. Third, number-crunching is not the only thing that comes naturally to you. You are a multi-faceted personality and you might be a literature-lover or a music aficionado, or a food connoisseur. With so many diverse papers that this course encompasses, there are endless possibilities for your career trajectory. You get used to these stereotypes, and with your multi-hued personality, you ace it all, with or without a professional course- and end up in a variety of jobs, some of which don’t even have the word “accounts” in their job profile.   With inputs from Iresh Gupta Kritika Narula [email protected]]]>