I competed in the rat race of +2 exams in the year 2003. During that time there was another rat race termed TNPCEE which stands for Tamil Nadu Professional Courses Entrance Examinations. A cut-off mark is calculated by normalising the scores you obtain in your +2 exams and TNPCEE exams.
The two ranking system before 2006
In those days, Education Department of Tamil Nadu used to announce two set of rankings
* Names & Marks of the students who have occupied first three ranks. Sometimes these positions are shared by multiple candidates. On a lighter note whenever there is a topic surrounding this issue, I remember the scene from the movie Gilli.
* Rankings based on normalisation list (The combination of +2 marks and the TNPCEE marks). Though the first three ranks are not announced, you can find your ranking in your caste quota by logging into their website. I vividly remember that I ranked 4000th position in Engineering cut off list. I didn’t even bother to check my position on the medical list.
The Government decided to scrap the TNPCEE in the year 2006, a year which I can remember because my brother belongs to the last batch of students who had appeared for TNPCEE. Students were quite anxious, and there was contradictory information regarding the proceedings of the exam. And finally, the exam was conducted.
Remember while +2 exams have a mixture of descriptive and multiple choice questions, TNPCEE was a complete MCQ exam. The fact that a student answers the exam in OCR sheets added to the anxiety levels. Many training centres milked money training students for TNPCEE. When the Government body decided to go away with the devil, it shattered the market surrounding the TNPCEE training centres.
Tamil Nadu Government abolishes the ranking system for +2 students
Eleven years later the Education Department of Tamil Nadu has decided to scrap another crown jewel of Education Business – The announcement of first three ranks in +2 exams. The implications of this decision can only be felt or measured during the next year exams, definitely not this year.
Whether the businesses belonging to education mafia, continue their existing strategies or fine tune it? We are sure to know of it in the coming days.
The students who appear for +2 exams would fall into these three categories
* Students who are exceptional learners and aim for professional courses
* Students who are not exceptional learners, but work hard and aim for the top rankings and professional courses
* Students who are happy to cross the 55% line, and join a college
I am sure that third category will not be affected by any announcement whatsoever. They are quite happy to clear the exams and get into a college. While they might have slim chances of getting into Engineering/Medicine, they would secure a berth in other courses for sure.
The first category may or may not be affected by this announcement depending upon the potential of the student. For me, it is quite hard to understand their predicament.
Although I am not a professional psychologist who have dealt with emotions, I am confident that the second category would be the most affected. I would apply the “Carrot & the Stick” principle here. The top ranking is the carrot, and the stick is your the hard work and sacrifice.
The Government has removed the carrot and thereby would render the stick useless. Students might reduce the intensity of their workout. Before the announcement, even if the students fail to secure the coveted top position, they end up in entering into a reputed Engineering college through Single Window System. (I am not talking about Medicine here, as the introduction of NEET has complicated issues). With the announcement, students might become complacent.
I am confident in writing about the second category because I used to belong to it.
Can we buy the stress-related argument of the Government?
Honestly, yes! In spite of the fact that there might be the lack of motivation, there would also be an environment where there would be less stress, anxiety and peer pressure.
It would be fascinating to watch how things would unfold in the days to come.
For the year 2017, it would be a disappointment for some and a great relief for many. The madness surrounding the rat race would cool down a little and sanity would prevail.
And I would like to recollect a scene from the critically acclaimed movie – Appa where a father is furious that his son lost 100% by a margin of few marks.
It may sound weird, but I always used to compare the process of writing perfect resume against cooking. You may wonder why? Think about it, resume writing is an art, so is cooking. You prepare food mixing the right ingredients in the right quantity, and you perfect a resume by presenting a variety of facts. Cooking is a slow process and sometimes painstaking for rookies. Rest assured writing a presentation-perfect resume requires its set of skills.
Finally, a tantalizing food is a feast for the eyes. On the same note, a well-written resume would send the right signals to the receptor areas of a recruiter’s brain.
So, how to cook! Sorry, write a perfect resume?
The sole objective of a resume is to gain entry to the heart and minds of the recruiter. In the earlier days of job applications, the resume contains a list of barely essential facts. The interview was the most common mode of understanding your particular profile.
Today resume shoulders the dual burden of communicating your profile in a condensed form and a pitching document.
A perfect resume is a myth, a holy grail which is theorized, not achieved. You aim to make a perfect resume, but end up creating an ideal resume which would help you gain a job. There ends the objective of the document.
The process of writing a resume varies from one person to another, but the components of a perfect resume remain the same. Here is a look at a list of 12 factors that if combined in correct proportions would give birth to a job winning resume.
12 ingredients of a perfect resume
The heading is the area strikes the first hammer. The heading is the space which is occupied by your name and communication details. When I say communication, I mean your contact address, mobile number, and email.
Important Note: Increase the font size of your name to make it stand out from the rest of the pack.
Don’t: Never write the title of your resume as “Resume”, “CV”, “Curriculum Vitae” or “Bio-Data”.
2. Career Objective/Personal Statement
The necessity of a career objective can be determined only by its writer. The contents of a professional’s resume with solid years of experience obviate the need of a career objective.
In case you feel that a career objective is required, make sure you write it on your own. Aim for a short paragraph comprising three to four sentences. They paragraph should directly answer who you are, and what you aim.
Don’t: Never copy the standard, jargonist career objective text from sample resume you find on the internet. They would do more harm than good.
3. Professional Summary
A professional summary should be able to capture the key features of your professional self in few bulleted points. A professional summary is a preamble to your resume. What you write here, is going to linger in the minds of the viewer.
As the name suggests, it is imperative to summarise your skills and not elaborate them.
* Never blow your trumpet in general and particularly in your professional summary
* Never write more than 8 – 10 bullet points
* Professional summary is best presented in bulleted points and not in paragraph form (although if you love writing or reading paragraphs, I won’t discourage you).
4. Key Skills
A sane mind would question the presence of Key Skills section, when there is professional summary already present. List of key skills on a resume serves two purposes.
* Helps a deadline driven recruitment executive to identify your key skills without perusing the professional summary section
* Key Skills section is also a place where you can include some critical keywords that a potential recruiter may use to search resume database
* Present key skills in tabular form
* Never include more than 10 – 12 key skills
* Exclude generic skills such as communication, team player, etc.
5. Academic Qualification
The placement and the content of Academic section depend on your experience. For example, a fresher resume would have educational qualification as a top priority, while a veteran’s profile would push the academic section to the bottom of the list.
Key things to include in your academic qualification section
* Name of the degree
* Year of passing (If you are studying write “pursuing” or “expected to complete in YYYY”)
* Exclude schooling details if you have removed the fresher’s tag (if you have more than 2 – 3 years of experience)
Internship experience and details would help an entry level professional. It communicates to the recruiter, that an entry level professional is not a fresher, and has some experience serving in an organisation. I would personally recommend not to include them if you are an experienced professional.
7. Work Experience
The trickiest part of any resume is your work experience. If you list down your roles and responsibilities from entering the office until leaving your cabin, you are in for a surprise! Your resume won’t trouble the recruiters.
A potential recruiter would love to see your achievements and not the boring list of your roles. The benefits of hiring you would be gauged on the achievements you have made in your previous organisation.
That being said, do not completely ignore your roles and responsibilities. Only include them if they are unique and makes sense to the job you are applying.
The training section on your resume communicates a very powerful message to the reader. It makes them feel that you are a complete package, which requires less grooming and hence less cost. Training is training even if you have not received a certificate. Hence list all of them on your resume.
9. Software Skills
We live in the digital age. Every graduate is expected to be a computer literate with basic knowledge in handling applications such as word processor, spreadsheet, presentation and emails. Some jobs require specialised software knowledge such as CRM, SAP, etc.
Listing your software skills on your resume is necessary if they are relevant or closely pertinent to the profile you are targeting.
If you are applying for an SEO opportunity, your knowledge of HTML & CSS will come in handy. On the other hand, the same would be unnecessary if you are applying for an Industrial Sales position.
10. Personal Information
I have seen resumes with Personal Information section filled with details such as Name of Spouse, Marital Status, Children, Father’s Name, Nationality, and some containing even the Religion.
I am sorry folks, and your recruiter would not be bothered about your ethnicity unless you are going to mention it.
Write only the needful information which includes
* Date of Birth
* Languages Known
* Passport Details
Hobbies or personal interests continues to be a contradicted subject. I recommend writing the hobbies only if they are relevant to your current profile and makes sense for the recruiter.
Let us check this example. If you are applying for a Front End Designer position in a Digital Marketing Agency, it makes sense if your hobby is a photo manipulation.
Do you rely on the spell check of your word processor (Microsoft Word)? If yes, then you are in trouble. MS Word sometimes overlooks minute grammatical errors which may have a serious dent on your reputation. Use specific grammar check software such as Grammarly and make sure that your resume is free from spelling and contextual errors.
Have a comment, you have all my ears. Drop them below, I would be sure to respond.
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The month of May, in Chennai is famous for many reasons – soaring heat (Agni Natchathiram), complete occupation of Marina beach in the evening, shopping at T Nagar, kids enjoying their holidays and of course fresh juice outlets minting money when the sun is shining. Of all these instances, May is also famous for raising the anxiety limits of a set of people who are eagerly waiting a result that is going to change the course of their lives. I am confident you would have guessed it. Yes, I am talking about the +2 kids who are expecting their results in the month of May 2017.
When I had completed my +2 (in 2003), we had an entrance examination for professional courses known as TNPCEE – Tamil Nadu Professional Courses Entrance Examination. Not many of this generation know that such a process existed. Many people including me, have lost admission in prestigious institutions by margins as tiny as 1/10th of a decimal. The process of normalizing the marks obtained in +2 exams against the ones received in the entrance examination, applications, waiting before the Anna University counseling used to add a lot of stress. To hell with this stress! my batchmates would say there is a lot more waiting when one tries to complete his engineering arrears and search for a job.
Have you ever wondered about the fate of those who did not clear +2 exams?
What we, (I mean the “we” who were lucky to pass their +2, come out of engineering without any arrears, fortunate to get a job or become an entrepreneur like me) forget to consider, is the plight of those who have never been able to cross the barricade of +2 exams. Yes, I am talking about the fate of those who were unable to pass their +2 exams and are socially ignored by this society. Unfortunately, they live a life which is hell on earth. Either they are sympathized too much or viewed with contempt. Suicide helplines would have to work overtime in preventing these people from ending their lives.
During the years of my completion, there were not many options for +2 dropouts. They have to come out of their shell, complete their higher secondary exams, and then opt for a college. I have heard stories of remarkable men and women who had broken the shackles of their failures to become what they are today.
2017 offers an entirely different scenario. A guy/girl who had failed in +2 has more study options to choose from than what used to exist a decade ago.
In this blog post, I am trying to list 5 of such courses that a student can pursue without a Higher Secondary Certificate. These courses are not exhaustive, and I do not want you to ditch the idea of attempting +2 and going to college.
I want the following list to serve as a guide, along with an emphasis that “all is not lost.”
With the advent of digital photography, the number of professionals pursuing a career in photography has increased exponentially. It is easy to acquire the skills of wielding a digital camera and employing them to make a fortune. The bonus is that learning photography and getting a job in the discipline does not require a basic qualification. What it needs though is your passion, creativity and the quest to learn and explore
Just like learning photography, graphic design does not require any academic skills. All it needs is the right amount of creativity and strong knowledge of tools such as Photoshop, Illustrator, etc. If you are willing to check the job potential of graphic design, go to naukri’s website and search for graphic design jobs. Yes, I said “meme jobs”, and you would be amazed to see that meme maker are in so much demand these days which prompted The Hindu to publish an article titled Wanted Engineers, Meme style.
Learning web design requires some analytical skills. Unlike learning hardcore programming languages such as Java, learning web languages such as HTML, CSS and jQuery are more of fun. Some companies are willing to pay a good amount of salary to hire web designers, and someday you are going to thank me for suggesting this option.
Search Engine Optimisation
You regularly use Google to search for information; you had used some keywords to land on this page. Frankly, this did not happen by luck. It happened through a systematic process known as Search Engine Optimisation. To learn Search Engine optimization, you must know to write in good English and must be an out of box thinker; the bright side though is learning SEO and pursuing a career does not require any basic degree.
Do you love animated videos/gaming? Then I am sure that the process of creating them is not only satisfying but also pays you a lot of money. Learning the tools are quite fun, although creating games involves some amount of coding. But in the end, you make more money than a developer working for companies such as CTS or TCS.
I am eager to know your views on the above list.
Drop me a comment below and please do not forget to share on your social media platforms.
Hello, Everybody! What you are about to read is my first article on this website, and I am totally excited about sharing my knowledge, and experience with you. Without grabbing much of your time, let us dive and peruse the topic.
I have been a professional resume writer since 2007, and have written more than 3000 resumes, so take my word; writing a resume is a simple task. Seriously! You may ask, but allow me to clarify. The tricky part is to create a resume that leaves a lasting impression in the minds of a recruiter. Any document, for that matter, merits a reading only if its opening is exciting. The opening must arouse curiosity amongst its readers.
The career objective is the preamble of your resume!
A well-written career objective instigates the reader to peruse the content further. Unfortunately, job seekers do not understand the consequence of a poorly written career objective and stick to the age old templates of our seniors and peers.
Why and how should you change this approach?
As the article is about writing career objectives for Mechanical Engineers, I am going to showcase below an example of a career objective written by one of my client who happens to a Mechanical Engineering entry level professional.
“Aiming to build within the organisation a vibrant and stimulating environment, where the application of my skills and development of company goes hand in hand.”
I was confident that he had copied this content from someone else’s resume. I confronted him, with a simple question – The career objective makes no mention of your field of study or the field of work you are targeting? To my honest surprise, he was blinking.
I then explained to him that a good career objective must briefly answer the following questions.
Who you are?
Your relevant skill set
What are you aiming at?
Mentioning the industry if necessary
I also recommend to potential job seekers to change the title of this subheading from Career Objective to Personal Statement which makes more sense.
The below table consists of a compiled list of career objectives suiting Mechanical Engineering graduates.
[table id=1 /]
The above list is neither comprehensive nor would fit your profile entirely. The emphasis is to create customised content for your career objective rather than simply copy-pasting the boilerplate of your friends or peers.
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