So…what next?

There was a wedding in the family and Shyam’s cousins were going to be at his place for the next few days. He could barely conceal his excitement. His big brothers were fun and there was never a moment of quiet with them around. Being the only child, Shyam missed having siblings- his cousins Bharat and Vishal were always there however! This time he also had another agenda for them-now that this year he was going to finish 10th grade, his mind was reeling – What next?? He wanted to understand his options and his brothers were the perfect candidates to give him some sound advice.

The “What next??” question was almost always on his mind. Now with the wedding around the corner, he knew precisely what to expect from his relatives and friends– the same “What next?” question! Thankfully his parents were supportive and they had complete confidence in him. That was very comforting! How important it is to have parents who extend support when we most need it ,is it not?!

So What Next
The house rocked with enthusiastic spirits the day his cousins and family arrived. The weekend saw an excited trio deeply immersed in football, cricket, movies and of course …pizzas! They shared their recent experiences, jokes, the latest Apps and of course Bollywood! Shyam really enjoyed his time with his cousins, more because he was not sure if he would get to meet them next year – just in case he chose to go to a hostel!

On Sunday night they all sat down for a cozy family chat- Shyam, his cousins and their parents. Bharat casually asked him – “So, what stream do you plan to take next year? You decided?”

“Oh no! Not that dreaded question again!”thought Shyam.

“Well…Bharath that is what I wanted to discuss with you and Vishal. How did you decide what you wanted to do after the 10th?”

“What? It’s February and you are giving exams in April…you STILL don’t know???” askSo What Next 2ed Vishal.

Shyam was visibly getting tensed.

“Don’t get him tensed Vishal, he is already quite scared.”, guffawed Bharat. “Don’t worry Shyam, Vishal is just pulling your leg.You are only going through what we all went through ourselves. There is ample time. Get a pen and paper and let’s list your options.”

“Here I got them for you, I was just joking”, grinned Vishal. “You are only suffering from I-am-so-confused syndrome. I was just like you at that age and now see how much better I am.”

Shyam knew how right Vishal was. Both his brothers were serious about their respective streams. Bharat was studying Aeronautical Engineering and Vishal was running his own Event Management company. They were both doing very well and were happy.

“So…here we go..let’s start with your options…hmmm…of course you have your broad options of Science, Commerce and Humanities for grades 11 and 12….but I always tell my juniors, to think and find out their interests first and then make a plan. Depending on your plan for college, you can easily make your choice for grade 11……..also… have you given a thought about your area of interest and passion?” asked an excited Vishal.

“He loves to construct and build things, Vishal”, chimed in Shyam’s enthusiastic mother.

“Yes, mom is quite right, watching new constructions and designs excites me.” said Shyam.

“That’s great Shyam, so you are lucky to already have an idea about your stream. You know there are so many options – design engineer, civil engineer, architecture etc. In my opinion, you should research all related options and then make an informed choice for your grade 11!” said Vishal.

“The most important thing is, to ensure that you are happy with the option you choose and are passionate about it!” said Bharat.

“Hmm….I suppose you are correct, both of you! How do you think I should research and find my options?” asked Shyam.

“Speak to your seniors, browse the internet, am sure your teachers will also be able to help you. You are a smart boy, just like your cousins..ahem…so am sure you will research well and make intelligent choices…just like we made  “

“Okay, now that we are done with discussing your future…could we please watch Formula 1 racing now???? Please pass me the remote control and the potato chips!” said Bharat.

“Yes I will, but only if you promise to see my research and help me narrow my choices for grade 11!”

“Of course we will Shyam, we all will help to guide you. Your parents have been asking us to speak to you about this since December, that’s why we came early- to support and stand by you!”
Shyam was glad to have opened up to his family. He now knew how to plan his future and make relevant and related choices after his 10th and 12th grades. His parents who saw how his brothers were guiding him, were also happy for him.

Dear parents,
It is extremely important to provide support and guidance to students when they are faced with choices. Help your child make a plan for himself/herself. There are so many options in this hi-tech world of ours, it is a matter of tailoring choices to interests and passions!