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If there’s any month in a year that’s full of frantic running about’s and a thick layer of tension in the air, it’s June. There I said it. June is one of the busiest months and we all know why. “Back to school” month, the “Oh no, College starts” month and for those of you in between school and college, the “Yaar, mera iss college mein admission ho jaye bass” month.  Admission into various colleges all over the country starts somewhere in the last week of May after all the competitive exams’ results are out and goes on until mid of August, in some cases.

You’re a lucky kid if you are allowed to go to the college of your dreams, with no restrictions from your parents (Jee le beta, zindagi). But for some of you, the college you would go to might have already been decided by your parents. This is where the stress factor starts surfacing. There are 3 scenarios here:

#1 You may not have made the cut off to the college you wanted to go to, so your parents decide what’s next best for you: Say, in the case of IIT’s or NIT’s, you may have missed the cut off rank by a few.  Disappointed, your parents would have taken it upon themselves to find you a college, thereby entering you into the race of admission madness.

#2 You may have wanted to opt for a completely different course, but your parents have other plans for you: Take engineering for instance. You may have wanted to pursue a degree in Psychology or Literature. But your parent wants you to opt for engineering as your professional course. END OF STORY. Welcome to the whole college admission chaos.

 #3 You don’t even want to enter any conventional college. (What about Culinary art classes, mom? Can I do that instead?)

Now, what should you do, if you ever find yourself caught in this whole trap of admissions and wrong colleges?

First of all, breathe. This is not what you wanted. You wanted to become a professional photographer or train to be a classical dancer. But a degree in hand is worth a thousand words to your relatives. Isn’t that the whole purpose of your education? To top your cousin Chintu’s, professional status?

Absolutely not.

Your dreams are entirely yours to dream. You may have to sit down with your parents and openly discuss with them about how much you’ve dreamt of doing what you wanted to, in the first place. If they’re fair, they will oblige to your plans, because they support your dreams. If they’re anything but rational, this may not work at all.

So, now you arrive at plan B. So far trying to convince your parents did not work. Try to bring in a trusted teacher from school to explain to them about your potential or maybe your aunt/uncle who is open-minded. If all else doesn’t work, go with that college they seem to be keen on. Hold your horses, I’m not asking you to give up on your dreams yet. Go with it, but if you’re determined to follow your dream, take coaching class to train to be whatever it is that you want to be. Take online courses, watch videos and sign up for tutorials. Reserve a couple of hours every day to work towards your real dream. It may be tough to manage both, but hey, multitasking’s every hard worker’s secret weapon.

(Exception: this may not work well if your dream is to be a doctor and your parents have forced you down the engineering lane or if you longed to be a CA but were forced down the science stream earlier on.)

In this ultra competitive world, every student is placed in a rat race of outdoing each other. If you do not make it to the college you so badly wanted to go to, don’t be disheartened, there’s plenty of fish in the sea. Try to settle for alternatives and if you are one determined kid who cannot oblige, take another year and give your dream college another shot. No harm there. There are plenty of successful people in the world and half of them were more focused on their real dream in spite of their actual course of study. That is what gave them an edge. They were in control of themselves and their destiny, in spite of their forced circumstances.

The Naysayers will neigh; you know your dream is here to stay.

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