In the Indian society, Science stream and the career paths derived through it are highly respected. For some reason, people- irrespective of age group- think that your intelligence can be measured by knowing how technical you are.
But as our society with time opens up about other career opportunities, the question on science stream still being the most relevant career path automatically arises. In this article we will take an analytical approach towards understanding the scenario of career options particularly around those related to science stream, and compare it with the other career options, the pay scale, overall job satisfaction etc…
Careers in science
The science careers can be divided into 3 major categories:
- Research and development: Engineering, CS, Scientist etc…
- Medicine: Doctor, surgeons, Pharmacy etc…
- Others: Architecture, Aeronautics, Merchant navy etc…
Why does the question on relevance of science stream arise?
As per a recent survey 60% B.E graduates (most common Degree among science graduates) are unemployed, i.e. out of eight lakh graduates, approximately five lakh are without job.
As per another survey, 65% of career switch happens from a science based career into a non-scientific career path (usually management).
As per the AISHE report 2011-12, out of top 20 major career options (which cover more than 85% of the choices) the percentage of enrolment in post-graduation in science stream is just 13% of the total enrolment in graduation. Compared to percentage that being 26% in commerce and 14% in Arts (even though enrolment in arts stream was much higher).
Job satisfaction in science based careers tends to decline as the employee progresses through age, which is not a case in commerce and is higher than the decline in Arts.
As per Payscale.com, The average salary of a science professional is minutely lower than that of other streams.
Growth prospects of a science graduate are slower than that of other streams, moreover most engineers do not get into 5 lac+ earning until they pick up managerial duties.
The above researches showcase that the notion about science being a more promising choice of career is partially a myth. The rate of unemployment and career switch shows that people need to reconsider their choice.
The reason behind such a condition can be understood through these points:
- The oversaturation of engineering and medical colleges is not in a proportion with the demand of professionals in the field.
- Huge difference in the standard of institutions leave graduates from colleges on the lower side of barometer jobless as better professionals grab the limited jobs offered.
- Many students pick up science stream because they had a good score, due to lack of research, counselling coupled with high parental expectations and social prestige, students tend to make such decision.
- Even after having a job in the required field, for growth, the employee usually has to deviate away from core field , raising the dissatisfaction despite being employed
Such situations and stiff competition can lead to anxiety and depression among students. What many people fail to realise is that a person who excels in the field of language and literature is as intelligent as a maths maestro.
Considering how the socio-economic factors are changing, penetration of automation in various technical fields, and current situation of stiff competition, It should be noted that the science and technology field is in a state of producing diminishing returns in the aspect of employment generation i.e. The growth is happening but not at the pace it used to around a decade ago.
Proper research and communication between student and parents is very important to understand whether choice is worth it or not.
Seeing the upcoming situations, what we can understand is that there are many creative youngsters are able to make their mark by using the current state of technology.
The field of science will always be useful and contribute to humanity’s growth, considering the present situation- this era is about using the current state of technology and not as much about developing new ones. Remember, nothing can stop you if you are good enough, and there are many more opportunities for you beyond the paradigm of science. You just need to be aware of the scenario, and prepare yourself for future.