BENGALURU: Vishal Kumar, 19, is studying for a Bachelor of Commerce degree, a subject chosen for him by his parents. Although he says it was heartbreaking at first, it made sense to him when he realized that his favorite subject, geography, may not have offered promising career opportunities.
“I plan to take the UPSC exam with geography as an optional subject. But to consider it as my major would be difficult as there are no interesting course options or career options, ”he said, adding that at least the business has a defined and tested career path. .
Like Vishal, many students who enjoy geography end up choosing other courses due to a lack of awareness or opportunities. While students say they don’t choose the topic because there aren’t enough options, college administrations say the lack of awareness and promotion has kept demand low.
A geography professor at a government college said it was disappointing not to focus enough on the topic. “Private and government universities need to promote the subject just as they promote STEM courses, journalism or psychology,” he said.
Meera HN, principal of Seshadripuram College, said there are colleges offering geography undergraduate and graduate programs, but courses are not in demand in urban areas. “The demand for geography is high in the upstate. Employability depends on how students develop their skills in this subject, ”she said, adding that with NEP, students may have the opportunity to opt for geography as an elective course. with other materials, thus increasing its demand.
The Vice Chancellor of the University of Bangalore, Professor KR Venugopal, agrees that the NEP will help change the traditional nature of the course and make it more relevant by integrating it with technology. “The subject is more than just an option for UPSC exams. Opting for it with engineering subjects or with an emphasis on disaster management will make the subject career-focused, ”he said.
“The program should be changed”
Dr Rajasekhar, director in charge of the Institute for Social and Economic Change in Bengaluru, said that to make the topic attractive, the curriculum needs to be changed to meet current needs, as has been done in foreign universities. “Geography should be taught from the perspective of development studies, like geography in relation to social and economic changes,” he said.