Riding high on the success of getting a seat in one of the most prestigious women's college in the University of Delhi, she came to Delhi starry eyed. Ranchi girl Richa Sharma’s (name changed), tryst with the Capital, however, wasn’t the joy ride she had assumed it would be.
“Everything, from making friends to adjusting to college life, was difficult. Negotiating with difficult classmates, battling peer pressure and a constant urge to play it cool were among the most difficult things to live with. The initial six months are the toughest. If you can manage to battle those days, things get easy,” says Sharma.
Teething troubles are worth it because “the experience of studying in one of the most prestigious universities is very satisfying. College makes you learn a lot. From people skills to management, you learn everything,” adds Sharma, a second-year law student.
Says Dr Gurpreet Singh Tuteja, deputy dean - students welfare, University of Delhi, “Everyone knows that college life offers tremendous freedom… to wear what you want, to be what you want to be. However, self-discipline plays a very important role. Here, you are out of the cocoon of the protective arms of your parents and school teachers and into a world so vast and varied. A good understanding of yourself and your priorities will go a long way in keeping your feet on the ground. Also, please learn to say no.
“With the semester system also coming into play, students must understand that the year is going to be a packed thriller. From projects to assignments and fieldwork to internals, everything will happen twice a year. A student will need to be organised from day one. None of your teachers are going to cajole you into studying, it is going to be your duty,” adds Tuteja.
College is about growing as an adult and making responsible use of freedom. Please don’t think it will be an extension of school life. “You have total freedom to do anything… attend a class or bunk – it’s your call. But always remember you are being watched by your teachers. They might not scold you, but you might see the impact on your results. Be regular in classes. You’ll get ample time to have fun,” says Vaibhav Juyal, a recent graduate.
“For most outstation candidates, the prospect of studying in DU is both exciting and challenging. While interacting with a host of completely different people hailing from different backgrounds can be fun, understanding them and accommodating their take on things can be trying. For most outstation candidates, the entire experience of living and learning in a metro like Delhi entails adjusting to simple things like shopping in hypermarkets or absorbing its cosmopolitan attitude,” says Shonali Chakravarty, an ex student.