When I think of the last time I wrote anything it makes me shudder to remember that it was almost 3 months ago. Cliché as it may sound, I couldn't write because I was busy contemplating the course of my life. Realy I was! I graduated last month, you see. And if you know me, you would know I was deciding whether I should come back and search for a job or extend my stay and continue for another year.
I remember when I was a fresh class 12 graduate and got selected for scholarship; I singed a bond with the government agreeing to be among the teacher-candidates. They said we were the promise of the future, the future lecturers, send away not in India but in 'Third Country' as they put it to become better educators. Sending us away with so much promise that when we complete our course we would come back and be directly appointed as assistant lecturers.
Now,if you have been following any newspapers you will already know the chances of that happening are Nil. Now that we are about to complete our course, we are neither young enough to believe RGOB is going to deliver their promise nor naive enough to assume it is that simple. I am not saying students deserve to be appointed as assistant Lecturers just because they are on scholarship. There are students from India and Sherabtse who must work equally hard to get the same position. We are not so naive as to think there won't be other students applying for the same position, so directly being appointed as an assistant lecturer might as well be a myth. However, the vast number of competitor for the same slot is not what bothers me; once you are in your final year and have seen the number of unemployed graduates, you kind of expect the competition. You prepare yourself for an even higher number of students competing with you next year. So a given number of graduates clashing with you for your desired choice of spot is a given.
What disheartens me is the number of slots available to compete for in the first place.This year the vacancy for the position for an English Assistant lecturer in all of the University under RUB is zero. Yes, you heard it right, there isn't any slot for English assistant lecturers in any of the universities, yet no one can contest that the majority numbers of students graduating each year is always BA English. So I am wondering what will happen to all these BA English graduates? What are they going to do?No doubt,there is journalism but there are already so many journalism graduates trolling around, literature students would surely be in a disadvantage. Ofcourse, just because there is no slot for an English assistant does not necessarily mean the graduates will be left behind. I am sure they will find a job in the end, either after RCSC or private but what are the chances that the job they get selected for will be the subject they majored in.
RUB managed to squeezed a single slot for 'Creative Arts' in Paro College of education, and one can argue that it is enough but any literature students will know there is a vast difference between 'creative arts' and 'literature'. I am not a science student so I cannot profess anything of the sort for them, but they are students as well, so perhaps their concerns are as similar to mine. I know for a fact that there are only 4 slots for Mathematics this year and I am already friends with 6 Mathematics graduates who are applying for the same slot. So now I am lost as to which among them will manage to bag the slot.
Competition is a fact of life, everyone expects it, but what if there is no slot to compete for in the first place? I certainly did not undertake literature for three years so go Home and work in a job completely irrelevant to literature. I certainly would not be completely competent in teaching a subject I don't know much about and I certainly would not be passionate about it. With the number of graduates increasing and vacancies decreasing every year, if the number of slots of English assistant lecturer is zero this year,I certainly cannot imagine any improvement next year.
I am aware that it is usually when RCSC examinations are about to take place that there are so many articles about graduates, you might want to gag over another similar piece.But my days lately have been filled with browsing RCSC and RUB website hoping they will announce something, anything that will reassure me that while I am holing up my part of the deal, they will honour theirs. And if only I was sure there was going to be a job to compete for in the first place when I get back, I would not have been contemplating my next course anyway.