I have passed my class XII exams with 75 per cent marks. I am going to appear in Central Institute of Plastics Engineering and Technology's (CIPET's) Joint Entrance Exam for the BTech programme in plastics engineering. What is its scope? What are the job opportunities after the completion of BTech?
— Satbir Singh
You are selecting a good option as the job opportunities for trained professionals in this field are immense, particularly with public sector organisations such as the ONGC, Oil India, polymer corporations of different states, petro-chemical research laboratories, and the Ministry of Petroleum and Chemicals.
Over the last decade, plastics technology and polymer sciences have attracted multi-crore investments from some of the biggest industrial houses in India. Companies like Reliance, Spic, Nocil, Finolex and others have set up plants to produce raw materials as well as research laboratories to develop new products.
Also, there are plants which develop intermediate products like PVC films of various thickness, synthetic marbles, and materials for sanitaryware and so on. Also, there is a lot of work being done to develop such plastics as also low cost polymers, which have a pilfer-proof property, for the packaging of healthcare products and medicines. Plastic waste management industry has also emerged as a parallel option for work.
I am a first-year BSc (applied physical science) student from Delhi University. Can I opt for a diploma/ MSc in forensic sciences after graduation as I didn't have biology in school, but we have biology in our first year? What are the career options after my BSc? In which subjects can I do my post-graduation?
Forensic science is a laboratory-based profession. The programme equips the student to apply his/her knowledge of science to crime investigation. Forensic scientists analyse all physical evidence found on a victim and compare it to evidence taken from the suspect and provide expert testimony in a court of law. They work closely with the police to provide scientific evidence which is admissible in court. A science background can lead you to a career in forensic science.
You do not specifically require biology for this specialisation. You can either go for a Masters degree in forensic science or a diploma in forensic science and criminology. For this, you need to be a graduate preferably with a first division in physics, chemistry, zoology, botany, biochemistry, microbiology, pharmacy, dentistry or applied science. Punjabi University, Patiala; Dr Bhim Rao Ambedkar University, Agra; Bundelkhand University, Kanpur and University of Madras are some of the institutions offering the MSc programme in forensic science to science graduates.
You can also consider a diploma in forensic science and criminology at University of Punjab, Chandigarh; a diploma in forensic anthropology at University of Lucknow, or a certificate in forensic science at Delhi University's department of anthropology.
If interested in the life sciences, you could select from careers such as biotechnology, environmental science, medical laboratory technology, food processing, forestry, plastics and packaging, pharmacy and so on. These fields require post-graduate training, at the degree or the diploma level.
With an MSc in biotechnology, or environmental science, you can work in biotechnology organisations, pharmaceutical companies, chemical industries, agriculture and allied areas, as well as with organisations which dealing in ways to control, eliminate and prevent environmental hazards.
To work in food processing industries and laboratories, you should be an MSc in home science or food technology. This would open up opportunities in the food processing industry with organisations processing and marketing fruit juices, edible oils, breads, soft drink concentrates, fruits vegetables and so on. Pharmacy and jobs in medical laboratory technology are other openings for those with a life sciences degree. Moreover, you can also do an MBA and get into a management-related job.
After class XII, I am planning to study law. But I am confused what to choose. I read about the company secretary (CS) programme in your columns. Should I look up to study law from any other law college and pursue this course? Please tell me details. I can study hard and have a good capacity. With a second division, which are the other courses I can look up? I have good communication skills and want to work hard. Please help me.
There is no need to feel despondent. There are many career options you can select from. While the five-year law programme may not be possible at this stage, it could still be your option after graduation. Since a career is something that you do for most of your life, it should be what that you enjoy doing. So your choice of career must ideally be based upon your aptitude and interests.
After identifying these and the broad arena and environment you see yourself working in, you should be able to choose your career easily. Whether a career in law is advisable or not, really depends on your abilities and interest in this field. To be a lawyer successful, you need to have above average intelligence, analytical abilities, strong memory and excellent communication skills. Moreover, if interested in legal work, you could also consider the CS programme which provides an integrated knowledge of multiple disciplines of law, management, finance and corporate governance.
An expert in corporate laws, securities laws and capital markets, a CS can work for any organisation. For more information, check www.icsi.edu. However, I suggest you complete a Bachelor's programme, either full time or through correspondence while pursuing the CS qualification. Alternatively, you may consider a range of other careers after graduation including advertising, public relations, event management, journalism, mass communication (as in TV and films), fashion design, travel and tourism, and publishing. Teaching and academics are other options. If languages are your forte, then you can go for careers such as information systems management, librarianship, translation, or even sales and marketing.