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Young and bright minds aiming to become scientists

CHANGE IN PERCEPTION

Young and bright minds aiming to become scientists

-Majority of JEE toppers want to take up research at IISc, Bengaluru after graduation

-Earlier the preference was on higher education abroad, especially US

-However, with changing geo-political situation, talented lot is exploring alternative options with research on top of the list

-Experts welcome this change in perception of present students bodes well for country’s development after being affected by brain drain for nearly three decades

There was a time when majority of top rankers and bright students, joining IITs and top technical institutions, dreamt of continuing their higher studies abroad, especially USA (United States of America). This used to be on top of their priorities list. However, off-late we are seeing a change in mindset of students of their parents.

With increased awareness on the need for research studies in higher education over the last two-three years and Centre also taking steps to boost research by pumping in more funds and creation of infrastructure, perception and outlook of talented students is also changing.

Take the case of JEE (Advanced) 2018 rankers, majority of whom are showing inclination to take up research studies after completing their B.Tech.

JEE toppers are not content with the super success and instant fame they are getting for performing exceedingly well in the entrance test for getting admission into IITs, the top technical institutions in the country.They want to continue the good work even in the future and leave their stamp while they embark on higher education journey.

Seventh Ranker Hemanth Kumar, B Jishnu (15th rank), G Sai Abhishek (31st rank) all want to take up research studies in the future. Interestingly all of them want to get into the prestigious IISc (Indian Institute of Science),Bengaluru after completing graduation from IIT Bombay.

The same trend was also seen with JEE toppers in 2017 also. All India sixth ranker in JEE (Main) 2017 Mohan Abhyas stated that his aim was to become a Scientist. My aim is to go into research studies in Physics and ultimately become a Scientist, Mohan said after results were out.

B.Venkata Pavan from Hyderabad got All India 11th rank in JEE (Main) and his aim is to do research in Robotics and Gaming. D. Sai Kiran, who secured 24th rank, wants to take up research in Quantum field theory in the future.

Ravuri Praful, overcame a personal loss (he lost his father few years ago) to secure All India 71st rank in 2017 wishes to join IISc (Bengaluru) and do Astronomy research in the future.

This transformation in students’ outlook augurs good for our country’s growth and economy as several developed nations benefitted because of brain drain from India for last few decades.

Also increased education costs, limited job prospects, wrangles over work permits, changing political climates and transformed policies meant host of Indian students with foreign degrees to return home. And this is playing on minds of the present crop of students who are embarking on their journey of higher education.

Former NAAC (National Assessment and Accreditation Council) director Dr B.S.Prasad opined that young and bright minds looking towards research was a good and welcome shift.

“Research is one of the key inputs that determine nation’s development. It is good that present bright minds are showing interest in research. Earlier the focus was more on applications side rather than on research,” he said.

Dr Prasad explained that the change in perception and need for alternative options arose because the scenario abroad is not like say 10-15 years ago.

“ Education and job opportunities are not the same like in the past. Now the thrust in most of the countries is to give preference to locals and own countrymen and think about foreign talent next. So obviously the craze to pursue higher education abroad has dipped a bit if not totally hit. And with Centre trying to improve facilities and infrastructure and make environment conducive for research studies, bright minds are obviously attracted,” he felt.

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