March 17, 2006

Hi, young friends!

This is a personal note to all our young friends in schools.
Girls and boys who will be completing their eleventh and twelveth standard exams.This is just a suggestion.
As the summer holidays unfold before us, here is an opportunity to look out for a summer job or a holiday assignment.
I can tell you that the fruits of this labour will be immense.
There are two jobs I undertook which remain in my memories. Because they were experiences that stood me in good stead.
The first was when I was in class nine I guess.
My dad used to work for a pharmaceutical company and it engaged casual labour in the godowns. I cannot recall how this came to be but on one fine morning in mid- April, I found myself sitting with packers, and working alongside them, packing Phensydyl, a hugely popular drug, into small boxes. The job was not all that exciting but exploring the products and the operations was.
And when the wages were paid every Saturday before lunch time, I was thrilled with the feel of currency notes.
I wasn't a spender and had my dad showed me how to open a bank account and run it, I would have had a good balance for college!
The second experience was richer.T hat was a training on the job at a rag of a weekly newspaper. That May made my future I guess.
I learnt so much here. From composing and printing to reporting and writing features and submitting articles as a freelancer.
Internships are a sham. Summer jobs are exciting.
You don't have to go too far out of your neighbourhood to get one. If you love what your dad does, ask him to find a slot for you - even if it means working on the shop floor of Sundaram Clayton or tagging along with the sales executives of Sundaram Finance. If you aren't comfortable with the idea of having your dad watch you from the far end, ask him to talk to his friend for an opening.
If you do not have encouraging help from the family, just walk over to a chartered accountants firm or a small software company or to the local bookstore or to the busy restaurant, and offer your services.
You will not be disappointed if you try hard.The summer holiday lessons will stand you in good stead at IIM, IIT or at your first professional job.

Do I have a job for you? Sure we do! Mail me your CV.


Ragamalika said...

Hullo sir.
Sure I'll be interested in working for you. I've just finished my class 12, and, like everyone else in my position, have some en-TRANCES coming up... But that is no reason for me to waste my time doing nothing, especially since I want to be a journalist (thanks to you for "better-ing" my views on certain matters during a panel discussion many months ago ;) ), and I am applying for a BA for the same in a reputed institute. I would just like to know what all you expect in my "CV".
Thanks in advance

Vincent D' Souza said...

Our newspapers, Adyar Times and Mylapore Times, are announcing a summer course in Journalism & Writing to be held over 21 classes in April and May. I am leading the course and many media professionals will also be part of it . The classes are held in the mornings - at the Adyar Times office in Indira Nagar ( - contact manager Ms . Vijayalakshmi at 2491 3602 ) and at the Mylapore Times centre in R A Puram ( email - ph - 2498 2244).

The course will also lead to assignments for those who are good and our weeklies will consider publishing some reports of the trainees.

This workshop is open to students in Classes 9 - 12 and those who are done with their Plus 2 exams.

The course and your published field assignments will be great references if you choose to apply for a media course in India or abroad.

Both newspapers will carry all the info on this short course this weekend ( Mar.25, 26) 2006.

Ragamalika said...

Than you sir. I'll definitely apply soon. :)

Vincent D' Souza said...

How do we encourage neighbourhood stores / companies / firms to provide summer jobs to our young people in the area where they live?

To address this issue, our newspapers will try and mail invites to some firms and stores, asking them to make public their needs for part timers and young people who can serve them this summer.

If the stores and companies can provide a list of jobs and specific requirements, then young people in areas like Mylapore or Adyar can go for them once we publish the needs.

I have rcd mails from a few young people 'pushing' me for jobs at our place. We can only help in a limited manner!

Hopefully, the summer jobs idea will catch up strongly in Mylapore, Adyar, Anna Nagar and other areas.

Imagine the huge PR that stores and firms can create. Esp, those in the food and lifestyle and real estate business.

Ragamalika said...

Oh, but the reason for the *push* is quite obvious, I guess. Everyone wants to be part of some firm which has a *name*, as such, and, well, I guess a lot of people don't really like the idea of *working* in the complete meaning of the word, I suppose.

About the other neighourhood stores etc providing jobs... Well, I did try for a few back when I had finished my class 10 and had a long stretch of free time... BUT, no one was willing, though they very much could acoomodate ppl for a part time job... Point is, they think anyone who's studying in school is way too young, and they don't really take it in the spirit of a *summer job* but they tend to think that *underage kids are trying to find work for personal reasons* :rollseyes:

The people around here definitely need to change their way of thinking, and realise that *summer job* is different from *child labour*


err.. iono! said...

hmm.. i think i do go with whatever rgmlk says.. well, i am in class.. err.. should i say 11th or 12th??..okay.. i have finished my 11th.. so presently doing 12th portions..

i just got the idea of having a "summer job" only after i read your column sir.. and yeah, i hope it is a combination of fun and learning experience.. (yeah, as rgmlk pointed out, it is not the
M factor!! )

and yeah, about a CV.. what am i expected to brief about?

looking forward to hear more .. :)

Vincent D' Souza said...

It is good to see so many young people keen to do summer jobs. I have been receiving e-mails from all over!

And then there are those who want to know how to write a CV. (Sorry, I dont have the time to run a column on ' How to write a Good CV ' but I guess a list of your interests and assignments you've done so far in school makes a good CV).

All this yearning is definitely positive.

I wonder if our young people would even like to indulge in voluntary jobs - reading for the blind, raising funds for a 'keep the beach clean' project or manning the office of a local NGO?
Certificates on such assignments are valuable when you apply for studies abroad or for a job.

I do agree with the comment here that some local stores / firms are still to appreciate the spirit of 'summer jobs'.

I hope our newspapers will help popularise the idea.

Ragamalika said...

Voluntary jobs.... I guess it depends on what the job exactly is. For instance, some of my friends keen on getting into a medical school wouldn't really mind volunteering in a hospital/clinic or even helping those who are physically hadicapped.
And there are others would love to do campaigning, or work with NGOs etc
Of course, there are ppl like me too, who'd take up anything so long as it keeps you occupied and still leaves some time for fun... Especially since mosta my friends are busy preparing for this and that, and I can't ask them not to, 'coz their dreams are mine too in part ;)
So it really depends on what's EXACTLY on offer, 'coz I assure you no one would commit themselves to anything unless they know the exact details to the last dot.
I'm joining that course, but I guess it does no harm if I send in my CV (I'd rather call it my Bio-data) to you as well...
Atleast I'll be working on something rather than surfing the net :rollseyes:

Anyways, sorry for the useless advertisement, but here goes:
Visit my blog @

err.. iono! said...

"I wonder if our young people would even like to indulge in voluntary jobs - reading for the blind, raising funds for a 'keep the beach clean' project or manning the office of a local NGO?"

very much .. but the only factor considered- for any kind of job for that matter - is the time.. if it fits, there is absolutely no problem.. :)

S said...


i'm from PS Senior Secondary School. i've just finished my 12th and am in the process of finishing my entrance exams too!!

since i'm keen on journalism and media, i was wondering if i could do a summer job at a newspaper.

if you remember sir, you had been a part of a panel discussion at our school last year. you told us then, that it heartened you to see so many student standing up for what they believe in. that just heightened my resolve to always do so.

also, i'd like to know what sort of qualification it takes to be journalist, academics wise!!

i've mailed you my CV. thank you!!