Students who were supposed to graduate in 2020, have been significantly hit by the global pandemic due to the coronavirus. Schools and colleges across the country have been shut, and processes of graduation have been prolonged and hampered. Students are just as divided about the whole matter, while some of them have become interested in not giving their exams, worried about their health, other students have wanted to give their set of examinations only to make sure that they get an opportunity to receive marks that they deserve. Job openings have also decreased due to the significant dip in the economy, and the future seems bleak for most students who were looking forward to being placed into a company after college.
While the career and a student’s health are both equally important, there can be a variety of reasons why some students have valued one more than the other. UGC has recently sent out guidelines reassuring both university boards and graduating students about the possibility of exams. This was severely contrasting the previous guidelines issued by them, which has deterred exam schedule for Invertis University, which clearly stated that there are no exams to be conducted this year, and all students of the final-year were supposed to be given an aggregate based on their previous examination marks. Some of the states had taken this up seriously and had cancelled their pending examinations allowing students to feel safer about their health. These states included Maharashtra, Punjab, and West Bengal, however, after the new guidelines were released the states had no other option but to follow the advisory, except West Bengal who has initiated a letter asking permission to continue the aggregate marking process citing the importance of the health of the students.
Even though the pertinent health issues direct boards towards an easy marking system with grace marks for all students, having a signed mark sheet with the same can be extremely harmful to the students, their future, and their career. The negative impact can mostly be in terms of privilege, for students when it comes to job opportunities. Having a special mark sheet can also have a negative impact when students wish to apply abroad, or to other new universities. While this may seem acceptable for some institutions, like in Invertis University, in India, most colleges abroad, will not value these marks the same.
Students have been ardently arguing from both ends, while the difference is mostly based on every individual student’s needs and requirements. As a middle ground which can be achieved, students can be allowed the option, to appear or not appear for the exams, this gives them the power to choose, what they value the most. Having a singular solution to the global pandemic will only result in more confusion and other complexities, allowing students to decide their future also puts the responsibility in their hands. Teachers and university boards must come forward with mutual support for the decisions of the students.