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Lahore

March 12, 2018

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Career counselling: questions and answers

Q: My son Hamza is studying in Pakistan Scouts Cadet College (PSCC), Betarasi, Mansehra, in FSc last year. He has been a student of PSCC, Mansehra, since seventh standard. I want him to be in Pakistan Army. I need your best advice. Please recommend a good college or university for him. (Rana Javid Akhtar, Mansehra)

A: Your son is in the right place and I see he is progressing well. If all goes well with his FSc, he may enter the Armed Forces through the ISSB for a further training at PMA, Kakul. On completion of his training at PMA Kakul he will be commissioned as a second lieutenant. However, if you wish that he becomes an engineer or a doctor and then joins the Army, he may do so with advance appointment such as Captain for which he needs to complete a degree programme and some of the good universities could be NUST, UET, UET Peshawar etc. I am not sure whether he is a pre-medical or a pre-engineering student and, therefore, you can follow my above advice accordingly.

Q: Sir I am a fresh graduate of Electrical Engineering and want to start a career in the media but do not know how to apply and where to start. Can you please guide me? (Razeen Ahmed, Sialkot)

A: The media is a huge domain and there are opportunities even for Electrical Engineers to join large media houses due to the rapidly changing technology and the use of equipment such as drone cameras and latest broadcasting equipment. However, if you are looking to join the media as a journalist or an anchor, you must evaluate yourself and see if you have the required skills to become successful in the media. The media is divided into two basic domains the electronic and the print and you will have to do some research to find out which one is best for you. I hope this information will help you understand how to change your career or adapt your current engineering degree to the best.

Q: My son Zain ul Abedeen is a pre-engineering student. He is very good at math.s Now he is in second year and we are really concerned about his future. But don't know what field we should choose for him. He has secured 420 marks in first year and he is interested in software engineering but as he has no base of computer science so he might have difficulties in practical field as people having computer science basics will be preferred to him. (Sabiha Zafar, Taunsa Shareef, Dera Ghazi Khan district)

A: Software Engineering is a huge and emerging subject area and someone with an FSc and good Maths should not have any difficulties in understanding computing science or the development of software, etc. After FSc your son will be going for a four-year honours degree either in computing science or software engineering and the first two years of both degree programmes provide the basic understanding and are based on foundation modules after which he should not have any problems in understanding and becoming an expert as a computer scientist or a developer.

However, since he’s good at maths and he is finishing his FSc in pre-engineering, he may look at other possible options such as electrical engineering or electronics and communication engineering or mechatronics. All of these have career opportunities in Pakistan and abroad.

Q: I just did my FSc pre-engineering from Okara and secured 74 percent marks while in the past I scored 84 percent marks in Matric. After FSc, I appeared in the IELTS exam and scored 6.5 overall with no band less than 6. I want to pursue my higher education in international relations or global studies because my interest is in international politics, affairs and diplomatic relations. I'm going to Australia in March for this course. Please guide me from your best knowledge and experience. (Qamrosh Ali, Okara)

A: Since you have done everything right so far and you are all set to go to Australia, I would like to wish you all the best in your studies. IR and international studies particularly international politics are emerging subject areas and have huge demand but you would need to choose a niche or a specialisation for your postgraduate studies and then apply to international organisations to find a relevant career. I am sure you would be able to do so as I see you are a good planner and can organise yourself well.

(Syed Azhar Husnain Abidi is a renowned educationist in Pakistan, with more than 20 years of experience as provider of education counselling services. He has represented Pakistan in over 100 national and international seminars, conferences and fora. He is a recipient of the most coveted civil award Tamgha-e-Imtiaz).

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