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HindustanTimes Sat,20 Dec 2014
Pledging allegiance
Anwesha Padhy, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, July 23, 2014
First Published: 12:52 IST(23/7/2014)
Last Updated: 13:11 IST(23/7/2014)

Remember that time in elementary school when before the start of a new session — when you experienced jitters? Well take that feeling, magnify it about a million times, and you will understand the level of excitement and anxiety thousands of students are feeling at the moment. After battling the scorching sun, sky high cut-offs and the long lines at the admission counters, most students have finally decided on the college that they will be attending.

It seems surreal to be actually making this transition from school to college. Everyone is eagerly waiting for the classes to actually start so that the changeover can be truly completed. But if the war of words in the CJ conference meetings is anything to go by, students have already pledged loyalty to their respective colleges and courses.

For instance, Rishabh and Neeraj, who will be pursuing English honours in the same college, have tried (in vain) to convince everyone else that their college is the best. There was also an animated debate over English versus journalism. At three versus one, the fight seemed unfair, but Yusra used all her debating skills to put forth her point.

To avoid further dispute amongst the six of us, we decided to judge each of our colleges on the basis of certain parameters.

We started by discussing the pros and cons of the colleges in terms of the extra-curricular activities we would like to pursue while there. Yusra wants to dabble in everything from film club to badminton to creative writing, while Rishabh intends to unleash his acting talent by joining the theatre club. Parnika wants to join the oratorical society. Neeraj wants to be a part of the debating and reading clubs and also wishes to write scripts. Apoorv on the other hand hopes to show his musical genius to the world by joining a band. As for me, I see myself doing volunteer work and lots of writing. Since all our colleges provide a great platform in terms of honing our skills and interests, we found no clear winner here.

We then headed off towards the north-south divide. Yusra and I found ourselves fighting for a lost cause as the north campus group relentlessly listed the sheer advantages of studying in that part of DU.

Finally we reached the ‘canteen’ debate. This part saw the most vociferous participation. Amidst all the chaos, we never could reach a decisive winner. After everything, we realised the truth in the wise words ‘Ask not what your college can do for you, but what you can do for your college’. Every college is great on its own account; the onus is on us to take it to even greater heights.

Parnika Singhal, St Thomas’ School

Expect the unexpected

Life is very unpredictable. Often we do not get what we expect. However, we never stop expecting. While most of us have made it to our dream colleges, others are still struggling to find a seat. But our hopes and expectations remain unaltered. The experiences of seniors combined with the little anecdotes of parents help us draw up a list of expectations.

A new place, new friends, a lively new campus, new classes and even the new-found freedom are the things that come to one’s mind on the mere mention of ‘college life’.

College is completely different from high school and often students dream of doing things that they could not do in their school life. Just like thousand others I too have my list of expectations.

At the top of my list are the different societies which I intend to join during the next three years of my life. The creative expression society, Enactus (the social service society) and the marketing society are a few names. Given my love for drama, I will also volunteer to be a part of the theatrical society. I am really looking forward to learning from the very reputed and talented faculty at Delhi University. Delicious canteen food, amiable seniors and rocking fests are a few other things on my wish list. I hope Delhi University gives me some of the best years of my life and helps in developing my personality. So as I keep my fingers crossed I raise a toast to a cheerful start.


Rishabh Suri, Ramjas School

Gear up for your first lessons in the real world

College. These days the very mention of this word makes me happy, excited and nervous at the same time. After all, college will be my first brush with the real world.
English being my favourite subject in school, it was obvious that I would take up  either English honours, or journalism, giving more preference to the latter. The first cut-off list was appalling-one needed above 98% to pursue journalism at a good DU college! Hence, English honours it was. Then came the time to choose a college.

My favourites were Ramjas, Kirori Mal and Hansraj. The only way I could decide between the three was on the basis of the extra-curricular opportunities on offer. Given my inclination towards theatre, I decided that Kirori Mal College was the best among the three. Kirori Mal has one of the most well-known theatre groups-‘The Players’.

Besides it has consistently been ranked among the top 10 DU colleges.

My advice to all the readers would be to never rely on the “brand name” of any college. What may seem great right now may not turn out to be the same when you actually start studying! Also, don’t follow the crowd! Do what you love.

Yusra Hasan, Mater Dei School

It’s college time already!

Now that our colleges are decided and our fates sealed, its time we made the next ‘big’ decision…what will we wear to our fresher’s party? Haha.

Every college student (without exception) has told me that college is miles away from ‘just’ studying. No wonder I find myself grinning at the slightest mention of college these days. The very fact that college is but a few days away is making me really  excited. So much so, that I can barely contain myself.

I have prepared this giant ‘to-do’ list for college and I plan to keep myself super busy. I’ll be joining  almost every club/society. But my main focus is definitely going to be the film society. All the all-rounder plans aside; my list also contains at least two pages of all the eating outlets that I must visit. And am terribly thrilled about all the unhealthy junk food which I shall be consuming in the next three years!

My advice to my fellow freshers? Gear up for this roller coaster called college life. It’ll have its ups, it’ll have its downs but it’ll be worth it for all it counts!

Apoorv Gupta, Cambridge School

In search of balance

A mix of academics and fun is what I look forward to in my engineering college. In my view, engineering is a dynamic and unique field of study and am very excited about starting classes. I am also preparing myself mentally for the challenges ahead. The biggest challenge that I perceive is self control. I intend to contribute to the music fraternity of my college and would like to be a part of the various technology fests and competitions.

While in engineering college I want to hone my knowledge both in the theoretical and practical sense.  Hence, apart from my lectures I will pay close attention to the real world developments in engineering. I might also undertake a couple of skill-based courses like application development or web-designing that will augment my employment prospects.
I also want to set aside some time for writing — maybe pursue some internship or freelance. Last but definitely not the least, sometime in the course of these four years, I would love to learn a foreign language. My first choice is Spanish.

My expectations from the college are fairly simple. I just hope for understanding teachers, considerable exposure and of course an interesting set of classmates. However, my biggest hope is that I manage to fulfil all my aspirations and grow to become a better person in all aspects in the true sense of the term.

Neeraj V Murali, Rishabh Public School

A step into a new world

After going through the ­harrowing admission process and surviving the cutthroat competition unscathed, I am ready to enjoy the fruits of my labour!  College means more exposure, learning new skills and joining numerous societies and clubs — a blissfully busy life ahead!

Being proficient in English, I had a clear aim — of excelling in the language. Though the cut-offs were surprisingly high, I managed to secure a seat in the English honours department of one of the best north campus colleges. I had put a premium on course (over college). However, I had researched about the libraries of every college. English literature has many interesting facets — it is a haven for book lovers. However, it isn’t just about ­reading books but includes an analytical approach towards texts. Being an English student has its perks ,including combining the pleasure of reading with the monotonous job of studying. Almost everybody that I have spoken to has said that college isn’t just about studying. It is also about a host of extracurricular activities. Since I am going to study the subject of my choice I guess I will enjoy my experience at college. 
I am excited for my college days to start, a new beginning does sound promising.

Anwesha Padhy, Amity International School

Of new beginnings

As the first day in college draws near, every ­student experiences a mixed sense of excitement and ­anxiety. After all, a new chapter (and a very ­important one at that) in life is about to unfurl. Everyone, irrespective of their choice of subject is ­looking for some novelty and adventure — something which is refreshingly different from the school days. I am sure the journey ahead for all of us is indeed going to be thrilling.

To say that I am excited about starting college is really an understatement. It is a feeling that I cannot fully describe in words. I am going to pursue English honours from Lady Shri Ram College. I cannot believe that I am actually going to get a degree for doing what I like best — reading! However, choosing my subject was not easy. Till the last moment I was confused. Journalism or English — I had debated as I sat down to fill my admission form. But when I was apprised about the syllabus of both the ­courses, the ­decision seemed easier. To me, ­critically analysing Austen and Shakespeare for an exam sounded more fun than ­studying global politics and media.

I am sure all students have selected their course after factoring in their interest and aptitude. Talking about interest, there is so much we want to accomplish once we enter college. Apart from doing well in academics, we wish to excel in co-curricular activities too. College is going to provide us a wonderful opportunity of pursuing all the hobbies which we could not adequately pursue in school.

So here I am, satisfied with my choice of course and excitedly planning all the activities I wish to pursue in college. I ticked social service as my compulsory extra-curricular activity. But even if it had not been mandatory, I would still have participated in volunteer work. Another activity that I wish to ­pursue is writing. Though I know there will be more than enough papers to write in college I hope to become a part of the college magazine and continue my love affair with writing. I intend to be a part of Expressions — LSR’s creative writing society. I am sure all my fellow students must have decided on their respective choices too. If not, now is the time.


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