Insider's tale on the varying shades of eminence in Delhi's DU & JNU

Akhil Acharya's experiential insights on the educational experience at India's top ranked central universities in Delhi - JNU and DU

My Story

I'm Akhil Acharya from Kapilvastu, Nepal. I am pursuing a master's in Economics from Jawaharlal Nehru University and I completed under graduation from Motilal Nehru College, University of Delhi in BA (H) in Economics. This is my take on the constrastingly value adding experiences I have gained as a student of both universities - JNU & DU. This will hopefully provide a perspective to juniors seeking admission or planning higher education in Delhi.

Fascinating role of economics in politics & governance 

I was always fascinated by world politics since childhood. In the 10th standard, I realized that Economics shapes world politics. Economics, in a way, propels politics.

At a high level, Economics has two branches: Micro-Economics  and Macro-Economics. My interest further evolved and I remember, my interest seemed to drift towards Macro-economics. It fascinated me as to how macroeconomics worked its ways. How it is important in the context of policy making, governance and management to effectively expand the benefit to a large section of people. Reading up in the school days seemed to have also shaped my interest besides giving me some perspective... nothing deep, just about enough to sustain my curiosity about issues like world poverty, inequality, the role of world bodies like WTO (World Trade Organization), World Bank, etc.

Career options and potential with a degree in Economics 

Economics is interesting as it gives you a wide scope in your career. You can go for civil services, IAS, IES, work as a data analyst in research, advisory, banking and financial sector firms. With an advanced research degree, further options in teaching, and senior advisory positions within the government (economic advisor), development planning and policy design, etc open up for you. I for one, am planning to pursue a Ph.D. in economics and hope to work for the government.

As per the recent Times Higher Education Rankings by Hindustan Times, JNU and DU are the only two Indian Universities to secure a place in the Top 500 Humanities Varsities in the world: Times global rankings. JNU found a place in the 301 to 400 bracket and DU in the 401-500 bracket.

Ambience of the vibrant Delhi University

I have completed my Bachelor of Arts in Economics Honors from Motilal Nehru College (MNC), Delhi University in 2019. 

Delhi University is a place for youngsters to learn, experiment, explore, and get exposure. If we talk about extracurricular activities then a DU college does give us a lot of exposure. There are societies for everything where you can try your interests. There are societies for everything. Are you good at dancing? There is dancing society, good at arguing or writing poetry, Debsoc is there, good at sports? You have college sports teams. Along with that many other societies and clubs like finance cell,  fine arts society, singing society and social service societies are there in DU, which gives you a platform to show your talent. 

Coming to the studies part, DU can be preferred for Bachelor degrees. Scoring well in semester exams is not very hard here. There are only a few good professors in DU. From my experiences, I can say that Delhi University faculty are slighter when compared to JNU professors, in terms of professionalism, teaching styles, extending support to students, and friendliness. Especially, Ad hoc teachers are not particularly bothered that way. 

Extra-curricular activities are like a ‘must’ for DU students, they are the real essence of Delhi University. I was always good at arguing with people, and DU gave me a good opportunity to use it in a better way. That is why I joined Debsoc- a debating society to justify my arguing skill and develop it further for the good. I was a part of our college Football team in the first year and joined the Cricket and Football teams of our Department in the second year. I also served as the President of Wirtschaft- The Economics Society of MNC, Executive Head of Abhivyanjana- Hindi debate-poetry & creative writing Society, General Secretary of Finance and Investment Cell and was a member of Enactus, a social service club. 

The unique Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU)

I am pursuing my final year in MA Economics and absolutely loving JNU for many reasons. 

JNU is an extraordinary experience that prepares one to face the reality with confidence. One can find profoundly knowledgeable and experienced faculty members here. All the professors are nationally and internationally renowned. For eg: Jayati Ghosh, Biswajit Dhar, Praveen Jha, and many others. Professors are very well organized, punctual, ever-ready to help and support us, the students. JNU professors expect students to be proficient and therefore take up their teaching as a serious pursuit to accomplish this. During the exclusive meeting hours, the students can personally meet any professor in their cabin and discuss their ideas, clarify doubts and seek guidance.

When it comes to studies and exams, scoring marks is not at all easy. I am being upfront here. It is quite a challenge in JNU to score high grades/marks. This may be because the professors test in-depth knowledge, not just theoretical.

Environment at JNU

The environment is harmonious and anxiety-free. Political life is very interesting on campus and one can stay out of it if it doesn't interest anyone. People here are very open-minded and no one judges you for whatever you do. There are people belonging to the LGBTQ community in JNU, who are living an amiable life. No one judges them on whether they are wearing a saree or jeans. Nobody cares about that! I personally feel that the rest of the world has to learn this kind of acceptance from JNU. 

A must have experience

In short, JNU is a must-have experience. There is acceptance, irreverance, research, ideology, intellectualization, and of course serious studies! JNU welcomes you as you are and helps you to grow as a person. 

Akhil Acharya is reachable at LinkedIn and Facebook for any queries. 

The opinions, beliefs and views expressed by the various authors and forum participants on this website are personal and do not reflect the opinions, beliefs and views of or Genval Consulting Group Private Limited or any of its Partners.
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