I joined engineering in 1997 and finished in 2001, during that time there were very less engineering colleges and average students usually did not get a chance to think about what is best course for them. As time moved ahead every state, specially south Indian states permitted many engineering colleges and gave students a chance to study their desired course.
This freedom also lead to the confusion among parents and students regarding the courses. Most of the parents see the market and trends to make a decision for their children. When I passed out in 2001 most of the dot com companies failed leaving many of us job less. During that everyone just ran for Electronics and communication engineering or Electrical Engineering. Adding more to depression, parents of first year students started ranking Computer Science below Civil Engineering. I wrote a general post about all engineering course and their prospects for details visit Engineering Courses: Future, Prospects, Institutes and Studies in India.
Instead of doing little research or listening to the people in the industry most of parents just read news paper to make conclusions, which in long run make a deep impact on career and in turn whole life. Presently due to the global recession and Stayam scandal, ones again most of the people are in dilemma about Computer Engineering and Electronics Engineering.
Every time I visit India, many of my relatives and known people visit me for seeking advise regarding engineering courses. This always made me to think about the latest courses and their scope in view of a middle class family. Speciallly for girls, Parents are always worried about which is the best engineering course for girls? Instead of directly taking to my advise in this regard I would like mention a little about most popular engineering streams first and leave to make a decision. But I also give a choice of my preference.
Engineering is a basically a combination of theory and practical. Keeping this in view and thinking about the course will help you to make decision about you choice. Let me start with Civil engineering, this is a wonderful course and almost every college have good infrastructure for this, both in terms of faculty and laboratories. On the other hand this is really a tough job and most of the going to sites and taking care of construction management stuff. You can not make good money in this field working for someone and starting own company need good investment and contacts, which is difficult for a common Indian family. Mechanical Engineering comes with similar issues.
Electronics and Electrical Engineering are very good and highly job oriented courses. No doubts and questions about that fact. But when it comes to faculty and practical experiments most of the colleges does not have sufficient infrastructure. Moreover after finishing most of these engineers work in software companies as there no sufficient companies who work in core areas of Electronics and Electrical Engineering.
At last we are left with Computer engineering and IT. The infrastructure required for these courses is very easy to provide and if teaching is not good at college finding a tutor outside even in a small town is not a problem. More importantly when google, Microsoft and other top companies come for campus interviews they don’t allow any other stream than CS and IT.
Even after electrical or electronics engineering one goes to software jobs, more over top software companies do not allow them to appear for test and interview. Therefore, I don’t see any logic in going for these courses if computer science or IT is available. We have more software companies than any other companies. These companies pay good salaries and also give a chance for foreign assignments that will further enhance your personal and professional skills.
If I am the student or parent and need to select an engineering course, my order of preference will be.
1. Computer Science and Engineering
2. Information Technology
3. Electronics and Communication Engineering
4. Electrical Engineering
5. Mechanical Engineering
6. Civil Engineering
Once I am done with admission in any course, I will concentrate and work hard to be best in that course. Best in any field is always rare and respected. So I suggest all of you to work hard and live to the dreams of you parents and make them proud.
Have a wonderful luck with your admissions and post question if you some.