Written by Vedika Pathania, a second-year student.
Throughout our teenage years, we are faced with numerous decisions. Decisions which at the time seem like the end of the world and as someone who has made them, even though I’m still not sure if they were the right ones, if there is one thing I’m certain of, it is that the uncertainties never one and the decisions never stop coming your way. It starts in 10th grade. Science? Arts? Commerce? “They are supposed to dictate your future”
That statement I think is quite debatable. I’ll begin by telling you my story and how I ended up in college. It is a bumpy ride so try and stay with me till the end and hopefully you’ll find something that helps.
At 15 years of age, I was like any other 10th grader. My batch, the batch of 2020, was the first to give 10th-grade boards and so we were scared and studied a lot. I did fairly well, finishing with 93.6%, I was certain that Physics, Chemistry, and Maths were the way to go. I had different plans for my life, I wanted to study Astrophysics and Cosmology which is why I pushed myself into Science.
But 11th grade is a whole other ballgame. The sudden increase in workload and difficulty of the subjects stripped me of my confidence and gave me a reality check. By the time I realised that the world of equations wasn’t meant for me, I was too far in it and there was no turning back. So I pushed and pulled myself through those 2 years, did nothing but attend tuitions and study and cry about studying. Saying that it was tough for me is an understatement. But somewhere through it, I grew confident again, I knew that this is not what I wanted but I couldn’t give up on it. So I practiced, studied as hard as I could and finished school right before the first 2020 lockdown, and began my hunt for colleges.
I narrowed down my subjects. Psychology and/or Journalism. A complete shift from what I studied in the past 2 years, I know. But these subjects always had my interest and I finally knew what I wanted to study. The thing is, school is only as difficult as you make it out to be. I had amazing friends and a very supportive family that got me through it. Surround yourself with people who make you believe in yourself, who make you want to do better, and who make you feel that no matter what, they’ve got your back.
I had 90.8% in 12th grade so that wasn’t enough for Journalism or Psychology Honours at top Delhi University colleges. I shifted my focus to Private Universities and prepared for 6- KREA University, Ashoka University, Symbiosis Center for Mass Communication, Symbiosis School for Liberal Arts, CHRIST (Deemed to be University), and Bennett University. I’ll briefly explain my journey through these entrances and their interviews. From my experience, I can tell you that universities give more weightage to your personal interviews and your interaction with the interviewers. Interviews always seal the deal.
The process was a little different for us, everything being online; from interviews to tests.
For KREA University, I had endless technical glitches and couldn’t get through the interview. It wasn’t my first choice but it taught me to make sure that I have a proper microphone and camera.
Ashoka University has a lengthy admission process. It took me 4 days to fill the detailed application which needed everything from Academics, Co-curricular, Letters of Recommendations, Essay Type Answers, etc. Ashoka University also has its own Aptitude Test which I was exempted from because I gave the SAT. Even though I did not get through after the interview, it gave me an idea about how interviews are.
SSLA and SCMC had the same entrance test- SET which was really basic and easy with a few GK questions, basic English and Reasoning, and Maths. They had separate interviews. My interview for SSLA went amazingly well. They wanted to know about me, how I felt about certain situations, my opinions and where I saw myself in the next few years, and what I planned to study if I got in. It was similar for SCMC. Out of these two, I got into SSLA and was on the waiting list for SCMC.
I got accepted into Bennett University based on 12th-grade merit and a language aptitude test too.
Finally, CHRIST University, Bangalore. This was one of my first choices and I knew I had to get in. The entrance test for the course I applied for was pretty simple. GK, Reasoning, English, and a few subject-based questions. The interview went smoothly too. The interviewer asked me about myself, why I shifted streams if I liked to read, why I was interested in Psychology even though I did not study it in school, etc. I got my acceptance from CHRIST a week later.
My choice was between SSLA, Pune, and CHRIST University, Bengaluru. It was a tough choice, they are both great colleges. So I ended up making a pros and cons list. When it came to CHRIST, the pros for me outweighed the cons. I have always been into writing and Journalism was always an intriguing course and I got the chance to study Psychology with it, something that would not have been possible in SSLA. The course was everything I ever wanted to study, Bengaluru is an amazing city, the campus is breathtaking and although the University is a little strict, I knew I could manage it.
So here I am, walking into my second year of BA Journalism, Psychology and English Literature at CHRIST, and when it comes to the course, the faculty, the campus, and the friends I’ve made, I could not have asked for anything else.
If you’ve made it here, here’s some final advice- Always, ALWAYS have a backup plan and a backup of a backup plan because you never know when you might need it. Research as much as you can about the course, its future prospects, and the colleges you apply to. Ask around, it never hurts to talk to those who’ve already gone through the entire process. And lastly, believe in yourself. These decisions seem humongous at the time but a few years down the line, you realise that it wasn’t worth all the stress and the worry. As long as you have even a vague idea of what you want to study, you’re all set.
Best of luck!
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