Check out career options for students pursuing some offbeat courses
Programmes with a punch: Delhi University students pursuing some offbeat courses like Buddhist studies, forensic science and environmental studies share their learnings with Danish Girdhar and Hemika Kharyal.education Updated: Jul 27, 2015 18:56 IST
Rohit Verma, BSc Buddhist ­studies, Satyawati College
Career options after Buddhist Studies
# University professor
# Researcher at the advanced level in various subjects related to Buddhist studies
# Buddhist archaeologist
# Buddhist philosophy expert
My interest in Buddhist studies developed when I was in senior secondary school. Buddhist studies is a unique course offered by Delhi University to students interested in the teachings of the Buddha.
Students pursuing this course get to study other subjects as well, such as history, anthropology, and philosophy. The best thing about this course is that one gets to learn about the life of Lord Buddha, his teachings and how these are still relevant in today’s time.
The Department of Buddhist Studies encourages students to take up research work in the field of Buddhist art, architecture, archaeology, Sanskrit and Tibetan Buddhism.
It opens up opportunities in the fields of archaeology, museology, conservation, social sciences and humanities. In the first year, I learnt about the the history and life of Buddha and how Buddhism spread across the world.
The course takes you on the path to spiritual progress. Buddhists pursue meditation as part of the path toward enlightenment and Nirvana.Though I am an undergraduate student at Satyawati College, I also get to interact with students and teachers at the Department of Buddhist studies, which conducts a range of research programmes, events for scholars, and outreach activities, often in collaboration with institutes within and outside the campus.
The course also has great scope at the master’s level and aims to prepare Buddhologists who excel in knowledge, orientation, and application of Buddhist thought of peace and non-violence with high ethical standards and social relevance.
Importance is given to both theory and practice at all levels of the programme. The course provides an opportunity to expand our knowledge base and practice Buddhism with a view to promote healthy interface between academics and society.
At the bachelor’s and master’s levels, we learn about Buddhist history, philosophy, and literature available in Pali, Sanskrit, Chinese, and Tibetan languages.
We are also taught different aspects of Buddhism.My course has taught me to be more calm and composed and has improved my interpersonal skills.
Most students who take admission to the department or to this programme are foreigners who come from different countries where Buddhism is a major ­religion.
Scholars of Buddhism play an important role in strengthening ties between India and the countries they come from.
Get innovative in crime detection methods
Ishaan Khanna PG diploma in forensic science, SGTB Khalsa College
Career options after forensic ­science
# Forensic medicine and forensic pathology
# Forensic anthropology
# Forensic toxicology
# Forensic biology
# Crime scene investigation
I was always fascinated by scientific methods used in cracking criminal, accident and other cases. Watching crime-based shows and films fuelled my interest in the subject. After graduating in botany (hons) from Kirori Mal College, I decided to take up a postgraduate diploma in forensic science at Shri Guru Teg Bahadur Khalsa
College. Now I want to go for a master’s degree in this subject.
My seniors have also developed some techniques that can prove to be useful in solving tough crime cases. The course focuses on specialised areas of forensics such as analysing fingerprints, cyber crime trends, handwriting analysis etc.
Advanced topics such as lie detection, narco analysis, DNA typing and cyber crime are part of the curriculum. Forensic medicine, which is generally taught in medical colleges, is also included in the syllabus. Students also get an opportunity to pursue a master’s degree and can later find placements as scientists in state and central forensic science laboratories, fingerprint bureaus and intelligence agencies.
The course is a great mix of all sciences. Another unique feature is that we get to attend training sessions conducted by the Delhi Police Crime Branch. Through this we get an exclusive opportunity to visit crime scenes with them. We have so far learnt all about the issues faced by investigating agencies during crime detection, among other things.
The course also allows you to gain extensive practical knowledge. Students are expected to innovate and find novel crime-detecting techniques. One of our biggest achievements is propounding various methods for detecting fingerprints on the crime scene.
A blend of science and arts
Dimple Setia BSc (hons) home science
Career prospects after studying home science
# Food technologist and scientist
# Interior designer
# Entrepreneur in the field of ­textiles, food, baking etc
My interest in food and nutrition was the main reason why I chose BSc (hons) in home science, with a specialisation in food and nutrition from the Institute of Home Economics. For me, it is not just a subject, but an art. If you learn to master this art, you can have a great career.
The best part of this course is that it includes a range of subjects such as physics, chemistry, biology, sociology and psychology.
The course also opens up entrepreneurship opportunities for students. Securing a seat in home science at Delhi University is tough as the course is offered by only a few colleges, which makes it very competitive.
My experience with home science has been an enriching one. The opportunities for employment are growing in hospitals, food technology divisions of companies, healthcare organisations, educational institutions, etc. Our college offers BSc (hons) home science with specialisations in food and nutrition, fabric and apparel science, communication and extension, human development and resource management. In the second year, we get to choose an area of specialisation based on merit and interest and undergo theoretical as well as practical training.
Our curriculum is exciting because of field visits, community work and placements. The learning here is multifaceted and the course has an innovative and interdisciplinary approach.
The programme includes lectures, discussions, tutorials and practicals meant for the overall development of students.
Home science is gaining popularity among students due to its wide application in industries like clothing and textiles, interior decoration, food preservation and training.
More students are being drawn towards courses at various levels in home science, including bachelor’s, master’s and diploma programmes. It has become a field of interdisciplinary studies, making use of three main domains of knowledge – physical science, life science and social science.
More than just knowledge banks
Ajaz-ul-Hasan, research scholar, Department of Library and Information Science
Career options after library ­science
# Documentation officer
# Library and information officer
# Knowledge manager/officer
# Information analyst
# Director/head of a library
Library and information science is an interdisciplinary course. Libraries are now universally recognised as important social institutions.
As a librarian, one needs to be proficient in social science, humanities and one of the natural sciences. This helps in one’s overall professional development.
I am a research scholar at the Department of Library and Information Science, University of Delhi, pursuing MPhil. I have completed BLISc and MLISc from the same department and have qualified the National Eligibility Test. I am also the former president of the Delhi University Library Science Association.
After taking up this course, I learnt many things, including searching for and locating specific information in a document: managing different types of database resources such as Social Science Research Network, Econlit, Scopus and Web of Science; creating websites for libraries, blogs, and connecting the social networking sites to collect and disseminate information.
The course helps students learn more about the philosophy of librarianship, basic principles and ­professional ethics. Students can also get training in information and knowledge processing, organisation and reterieval of data.
I want to go for a PhD in this discipline. Libraries are resource banks that allow young men and women dedicated to their profession to enhance their knowledge base.
The Central government’s Digital India initiative will open up a number of avenues in this field. Information handling and ­measurement of information ­science can open up new dimensions in this field.
One can go up the ladder in this profession as those with experience and high qualifications take up senior roles and positions in libraries.
The salaries in college and university libraries are comparable to those of teachers. After passing out you have several career avenues to choose from. You can became a documentation manager, information officer, cybrarian, and professor in library and information science education. This is an ideal course for those who love reading.
Your passion for sports matters
Abhimanyu Rao, BSc physical education, health education and sports science, Indira Gandhi Institute of Physical Education and Sports Science
Career prospects after studying sports science
# Sports administrator
# Sports coach
# Sports development officer
# Sports therapist
I completed BSc physical education, health education and sports science from Indira Gandhi Institute of Physical Education and Sports Science, University of Delhi. I was always interested in sports and was keen on pursuing it as a full-time career. This is why I decided to take up this programme at the undregraduate level. I was lucky enough to have cleared the cut-off.
Sports play an important role in the nation’s development and offers many career prospects too. My five-step admission procedure included the following – written test, sports proficiency, physical fitness test, playing ability test and an interview.
I got admission by clearing all these tests. These tests are not so tough, provided you are passionate about sports and are willing to work hard. The mix of sports and academics is unique.
Do you want to save the planet?
Himanshu Gupta, MSc ­environmental studies, Department of Environmental Studies
Career options after environmental studies
# Environmental geologist
Environmental study is a unique discipline and offers great scope to those who love nature. I was always fascinated by nature and wanted to work for a green cause. I opted for basic sciences at Hindu College.
Today, problems such as high pollution levels, climate change, global warming and the risk to plant and animal species need to be addressed and dealt with carefully.
I wanted to contribute to bringing about a change and also by doing research that can help tackle these issues. This is why I took up a master’s degree in environmental sciences. I cracked the entrance and joined MSc environmental studies at University of Delhi.
The department of environmental studies has an excellent faculty with many internationally-acclaimed scientists and researchers. The department offers both MA and MSc in environmental studies. The course has a common module in the first year for MA and MSc, which ensures that a student is acquainted with the scientific fundamentals and also develops social temperament essential for tackling complex environmental issues. The first year of the course was very interesting, the teachers’ emphasis was on discussion and case studies rather than orthodox pedagogy. Field visits are an integral part of our curriculum.
The second semester comprises interdisciplinary modules which ensure that students take up a diverse range of subjects essential to both MA and MSc. The final year leads to stream specialisation in which MSc students study this course from a scientific perspective while MA students study the subject from a social perspective.
Every student has to undertake a dissertation in the fourth semester for their degree. Many students take up further studies, often leading to a PhD. The department offered me the freedom to take up extracurricular activities along with course work. I am involved in various research projects inside and outside the department. I have also received many internal and external grants and fellowships during my first year of master’s. My aim is to become an ecologist.
Environmental studies is a discipline that brings together researchers from diverse disciplines, ranging from social sciences to physical andbiological sciences.
The department has some of the leading scientists from different disciplines who are there to guide students. The faculty and students have published their research in some of the leading research journals of the world.
There is a diverse range of sub-disciplines that can be studied as an environmental studies student. These include introduction to the environment, atmospheric structure and composition, water quantity and quality, soil and land use, global warming and climate change and mineral and energy resources.