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Career counselling: questions and answers

Lahore

March 19, 2018

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Q1: Sir, I regularly read your column. Please guide me. I have done BA with simple subjects in 2007. Right now my age is 37 and I work as an office boy. I don’t know anything else. Subjects in BA were Persian, Punjabi, Journalism, Sociology.Let me know what should I do as I don’t want to work as an office boy any more. I often think if I do MA Mass Communication may be I would get a job in a TV channel or I should study Journalism. Please advise me. (Syed Ali, Lalamusa)

A: I appreciate your interest in education and for sure you are working hard both in terms of your job as well as studies. I would suggest that you look at exploring programmes offered by the Virtual University particularly in Computing Science and Software Development which will help you in understanding the day to day business and also finding better career opportunities at least better than an office boy. I’m sure there are degree and certificate courses in computing science and information systems that will help to boost your skills following which you can look to complete a degree programme in the relevant area.

Q2: I want to discuss about my two children. The elder one is in BS Mass Communication third semester and is interested section Film & TV. He stood first in the third semester. The younger one is in grade-8th. He has two options Pre-O and Pre-9 & (Matric). His average percentage in class 8th is 78% and he has interest in engineering. We are feeling uneasy to decide either we send him to O-level or Matric. (Mian Tahir Rashid, Bahria Town, Lahore)

What should we do further for their bright career.

A: I would suggest that your son works hard and completes his degree in Mass Communication and then finds an internship in the media industry perhaps in Film Production or Drama Production. But having said that I’m not sure whether he has the skills and passion to work in this very demanding and glamorous industry. I wish him all the best.

Regarding your second child I’m afraid he’s too young for me to provide counselling at this stage and especially when I have not met him or have had a session with him. I’m unable to provide corrective guidance.

Q3: I am a doctor working in a Gulf country. My son is going to appear for second year FSc exam next month. He has opted FSc in Computer Sciences. Currently he is studying in a Pakistani school here affiliated with Federal Board. Kindly give your expert opinion regarding the available options for him and the well-reputed institutes in Lahore or Islamabad and even abroad like UK or Canada. (Dr Nouman, Lahore)

A: If your son works hard and gets through his ICS in good grades, he may of course apply to so many public and private sector universities in Lahore and Islamabad through competitive exams these include COMSATS, FAST, NUST, LUMS etc. There are various options within the Computing Science domain and he can choose the development side or the Science/ Information Management side depending on his interest.

In case he wishes to proceed to Canada; he would have to do a strong IELTS/TOEFL in addition to his at least 75 percent and above aggregate marks, even a few universities in UK may accept him directly into the year 1 provided he has an IELTS of 6.5 with no less than 6.0 in each band.

Q4: I recently completed my BBA with Finance Specialisation. Now I want to take admission in MPhil Public Administration from Punjab University. What is your suggestion regarding this and kindly tell me about scope of MPA. (Shabbir Younas, Okara)

A: Having completed your BBA with a specialism in Finance. I would suggest that you should look at doing a degree in Financial Management, Actuarial Sciences or perhaps Risk Management rather than doing a degree in Public Administration. The career path that you have chosen for your undergraduate degree is quite visible and strong and I would not suggest that you take a complete new area which has limited scope. However, if you are interested to pursue Public Administration, you can do so.

(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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