Friday, July 07, 2006

Engineering - A waste of time

If I were to print a business card with my qualifications, it would say:
B.E. Electrical (DCE); PGDM (IIMC)
The first qualification is an utter, colossal waste - of taxpayers' money, which subsidised my four years at DCE; of my time, which was spent learning stuff I had no fascination for; and perhaps most importantly, of a precious seat which some other poor sod who actually liked the subject could have availed of.
College years are where one is supposed to have the time of his/her life. When I look back upon mine, I find not much I can look back upon with much fondness. Not the classes attended in dingy rooms with uninterested professors teaching even more uninterested students. Not the labs with Victorian equipment and frustrated assistants (my high point there was blowing up a transformer, which IS a fond memory!) And certainly not the administration, which seemed to take perverse pleasure in squeezing every bit of enthusiasm out of the students.

The bulk of my first year was taken up by a teacher's strike. From my second year onwards, I was under no illusions that I wanted out as soon as possible - CAT or a software job, but anything would do as long as it didn't have to do with electrical engineering. This sets me wondering - why should we regiment 18-year olds? Why not let them choose from as wide a basket as possible, and only later specialize in what they actually like?

My ideal mix at college would have been a bit of history, economics, mathematics and finance. Sort of what I studied at IIMC... :-)


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