Since our very early days we have been writing compositions about our 'Aim in life' and thinking that the fulfilment of our desires won't be that difficult, but facing the reality is not that easy. There was a time when parents believing that 'morning shows the day' observed their children's behaviour and interest (most of the time, mistakenly) and pushed them to their goal. Nowadays, things have changed. The long obsession with 'science' subjects and prejudice against 'arts' subjects exists no more. The new interest towards 'commerce' subjects has gained ground. Now students can take 'one' group for SSC, another for HSC, while a third one for graduation. However, this writer is interested in talking about the choice of honours subject-the final selection of a sincere and promising student.
From my own experience I can say that it's a crucial moment. Some say "take 'this' subject, you'll get job easily", some others say, "this subject has no future" etc. What can a student do in this decisive moment? Once I was interested in 'Law', everyone upset me telling that lawyers are liars. My obsession with BCS was shattered when I saw with my eyes how the BCS question papers leaked out. Though the University of Dhaka offers a lot of new subjects, most of the parents particularly those living in villages, do not know much about their possibilities on their eligibilities. That is why they put pressure on their wards for the traditional subjects. I know a girl called Rani, a first year student of History, who was interested in "Women's studies". But her parents did not allow her to take it since they had never heard of the name before. Therefore, it is very necessary for both the institution and the parents to know about the newer subjects, which are very interesting and promising.
Traditional subjects are now giving ways to the newer and challenging ones. New subjects open more gates to the future. Though books may be less available, but teachers are always more than eager to lend their books so that students can photocopy them. Besides, Internet offers many new websites, which provide rich materials on various new subjects. So, I think, neither the parents nor the students should hesitate before the new and retreat to the traditional and limited subjects.
What is worth noticing is that we have some baseless prejudices against some subjects, for example, some think that 'Philosophy kills people's religion. I, being a student of English literature, am often teased by my acquaintances as a 'Pagan.' Nevertheless, the choice of a subject for honours is quiet essential since it leads one to her his mature achievement in life.
I've tried until now to tell about present condition of both students and parents. Now I would like to propose a few steps, which can be effective. First, any institution offering graduation programmes must make people clear about the subjects they have on offer: especially, private universities offer a great range of promising subjects like Environment Science, Film and Media, Journalism for Electric and Print Media, Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology, Microbiology etc. Common people do not know much about these high-sounding terms and are less interested in them. Secondly, a student while choosing an honours subject must consult with seniors, experienced teachers. Thirdly, parents should not be influenced by rumours and must take good care that their children are not misled by their mistakes. And finally, all of us have to be less prejudiced and more liberal about the current flow of educational system. After all, it's a new time!