second year


There is a gargantuan vacuum between the triads of the life in and around college, the internal anxieties, and all the post-modern ways you try to mask it in. This piece was published in the farewell edition of DU Beat for the session 2018-2019.
In spite of the million diversities which form the demography of the University of Delhi (DU), what creates an eternal mutual sympathy is the fact that we all come out of the conveyor belt of a strict school system, having braved the long twelve years of mechanical monotony, and the teenage crises, under the constant surveillance of parents.

Naturally then, the idea of a promised land of unfathomed independence called college is firmly romanticised in our mental spaces. In perpetuum, the countless young-adult movies, the many high-school drama based books, and all those young-love songs, create an utopia: about a future in the dreamish college, which ultimately develops into clearly unrealistic expectation from, and hence for, the future self; a red zone by all aspects.

Then starts college, and with it, dance heavily and noisily on our heads all the expectations that the 13-year-old, and later the 16-years-old self had from this 18-years-old self. As if that being not enough, the present self adds extra expectations when one sees the other guy in the class who has a really confident air you had always wanted to have, or the girl over there is interning with a big-shot media firm, or some guy on the first bench has read all the books a human, for you, possibly can.

First year, hence, goes by in ticking the boxes. Studies, internships, dressing well, the right genre, a romantic endeavour, a friend circle – there are just too many to tick. Additionally, the university keeps its tricks in tact – the freshers’ parties, elections, and fest; a first-year kid, the prince of this promised heaven, has to ace all of them.

But the second year brings the disillusionment. You realise that there will be this person who would always score better, because the marking system is inherently flawed, that college societies can be really toxic, and any number of smoked cigarettes won’t fit you in with the cool kids, that the relationship is just another game of power dynamics, that capitalism is a lie, the god is dead, and there is no point of doing all the freelancing and internships because any tangible outcome is impossible. Overall, there is no point striving because at the end of the day, nothing actually is worth the struggle. Unsurprisingly, social media, where your friends show off their unflinching state of happiness in weekly parties and monthly trips, where success stories are a regular tune, only increases this existential malaise. Clearly, this is the huge boulder of failing expectations and hard-hitting realities, and the Sisyphean second-year kid finds increasingly impossible to ascend with it to the following year – the third and the final year of this tryst with life.

However, as Albert Camus famously concluded, one must imagine Sisyphus happy. Since the reality has finally set in and the ultimate truth of being caught up in indomitable constructs is a universal act, by the final year, one starts understanding existential angst in its own terms. Living is full of complexities, it is up to the individual to give the meaning to life. It is up to one to find the order in this chaos. And so one does.

“More often than not, one stops looking for the answers in the third year, and starts taking delight in the mess that is life, comes at peace with the hypocrisies, cultural anxieties, emotional and individual insecurities and, well, life,” remarks a professor, who has also been a student of this university, in a casual conversation.

Summing up, if you have spent these three years at the university and have, by some deux ex machina, succeeded in saving your sanity, you know where you are heading. Even if nothing makes sense right now, with patience, it will. Product of the Indian social constructs and the education system as you are, good things are waiting for you.

Feature Image Source: Google

Nikhil Kumar
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The beginning of the year brings with it countless pieces of advice for the first-year students. From where to eat and shop to how to ace society auditions, there’s no dearth of literature to help guide the fucchas through this tumultuous time. What inevitably ends up happening during this time is that the second- and third-year students lack any sort of guidance as they attempt to navigate the remainder of their college lives. So here we are, doing our bit to ensure the seniors aren’t left out.

Let’s start with the second-years. With barely anything to lose, this batch is the most relaxed of all DU students. Having gone through society auditions and having dealt with the hectic trauma of internals and attendance woes, second year students are inherently wiser and calmer. While it sounds great at first, this laid back attitude can often get the better of them. Case in point: yours truly. My second year, especially the fourth semester, was a whirlwind of non-academic activities. Attending debsoc sessions and covering fests for DU Beat provided me with legitimate reasons (read: excuses) to skip class on an almost daily basis. With deep regret, I confess that if I could go back and do it all over, I’d prioritise my lectures over my cosy bed and a boring fest. So there you have it – don’t relax too much, or you’ll come to regret it.

For the third-years, as much as it pains me to say this – think about your future. You don’t want to end up in a pile of tears when the fifth semester ends, when all your friends have already applied to foreign universities and you still aren’t sure about what you want to pursue further. The task is daunting but necessary – take out some time, maybe an hour each day, to do substantial research for your future plans. If you want to continue your education, look at all possible options – foreign universities, Indian universities, DU. Find out whether the admissions are entrance-based or merit-based. For foreign universities, it’s essential to have a variety of documents which you’ll need to have ready well in advance. If, on the other hand, you want to work straight out of college, keep an eye out for job opportunities. Try to intern as much as you can. Be proactive and work quickly to avoid those pangs of guilt when you later realise that you could have accomplished so much more had you just started earlier. And, of course, give it your all when it comes to DU – actually study for your internals, go to all those crowded star nights, and make memories that will last a lifetime.

So the next time you feel smothered by freshers-related content, refer to this for an insight of what to do and not to do as a senior!


Feature Image Credits: Equinox 

Vineeta Rana
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This is the time of year when the first and second year students bid farewell to their seniors, signalling the end of the latter’s undergraduate life. It’s naturally a nostalgic time for the third year students, but what we often tend to forget is how overwhelming it is for the juniors as well. It’s a flash-forward to what we’ll be experiencing in one or two years’ time and how far we can come in such a short journey.

Farewells are crushing reminders of the fact that not only are we saying goodbye to our friends, but that we’re saying goodbye to our leaders and our mentors. We’re saying goodbye to those who have helped us form our identity and help us grow in ways beyond our imagination. They are reminders of how much we’ve evolved and how far we’ve yet to go.

The lead-up to the farewell is the usual: frantic running around and last-minute panicking by the juniors, and enthusiasm and denial by the seniors. The day itself is a package of fun with an abundance of food and beverages. There are speeches, continuous photo sessions, and energetic dancing, but the common theme between all these is the bond between the people.

All farewells include laughter and tears, excitement and nostalgia. It’s never easy to think about how you won’t interact with these people on a regular basis anymore, or how you have no one to guide you anymore. But we take solace in the knowledge that they’re always only a phone call away. We take comfort in the memories we’ve formed together and which will be cherished for a lifetime.

You know something impacts you a great deal when you’re unable to write about it without being cheesy and clichéd. It’s a faux-pas I’m willing to indulge in for the sake of honesty.

So for those of you who’ve yet to experience this year’s farewell, be prepared. The heavy hearts are only an indication of your attachment to the seniors, and the sorrow will pass. Embrace the emotions and take it all in – you’ll be on the other side of the equation soon, after all.


Image Credits: Pinterest

Vineeta Rana
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They say that starting something new is easy; sustaining it is where the real challenge resides. These words are golden. I have seen their manifestation in my very own life. And how!

When I joined college a year ago, various aspects of DU life excited me. But one bug that bit me the hardest was the fashion bug. I remember spending the entire month before joining college, trying to put together a look for myself. I would endlessly sit before the computer screen, surfing fashion articles, Google Images and YouTube videos in my hollow pursuit. Finally, when I did settle on something I liked, I remember dragging my mother to the nearest mall and coming home almost penniless!

It was only after I felt that I was fully equipped with a trendsetting wardrobe, did I put an end to my shopping sprees. With bags full of clothes and accessories, I moved into my tiny hostel room. Lack of space was no deterrent. I was determined to be the Sarah Jessica Parker of my college.

Finally, when college began, I started to bring out my outfits one by one. Every night, I’d invest time and effort in trying out different combinations and seeking others’ approval. However, the tedium was both rewarding and unforgiving. Though I’d have a mind-blowing look for the next day, I’d also have a huge pile of clothes on my bed, demanding my attention. The mess used to take so long to tidy, that often, I’d just sleep on the pile!

These amusing tales, however, belong to the pages of my “Fuccha Diary”. Ever since I’ve moved into my second year, my attitude has taken a 360 degree turn. Not only has my dressing sense become sloppy, but my interest in college fashion has also completely paled. Now, looking even remotely presentable seems like the least of my concerns.

I think the cause for this change can be attributed to my second year. When you come back to college as a senior, the excitement that stems from the novelty of DU dies. Also, you have other, more critical things to worry about (e.g.: getting out of bed and actually making it to college!). Fashion takes a back seat and focus shifts to academics, internships, extracurricular activities and coaching for entrances.

In the light of our realistic constraints, it can be said that we, the sophomores of DU, are handing over a massive responsibility to the freshers. We are passing on the baton. It is now up to them to carry forth the legacy and make the streets of DU look fashionable. Let the freshers strut around in their fancy attire. We, on the other hand, are content in walking those same streets in our pyjamas and chappals!

For the more fashion conscious second years, and the enthusiastic fashion loving public in general, there is a solution that exists for all your fashion issues, doubts, problems and queries. It’s called the Wooplr App. It’s fun, funky and extremely helpful! The Wooplr App is easy to use and promises a delightful experience for those with diverse fashion needs. Enjoy the customised services and end up fashion wiser after accessing Wooplr.Make sure you check it out and download it ASAP.

Watch out this space for more fashion gyaan!


Featured Image Credits: www.cennamology.com

Kriti Sharma
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