What kind of jobs can we get if we attend a course in Christian Studies?
This is a question Fr. Patrick has to respond to when young people pose it when he talks to them about his department.
This priest is one of the lecturers at the Department for Christian Studies at the University of Madras. The Head is an internationally known theologian, Dr. Felix Wilfred.
This week, the faculty and some students here set up a meeting with a cross section of the community - pastors and nuns, researchers and social workers and media professionals - to brain storm.
How does one make the department known better to the world at large? And how can its education be relevant to the times?
To cater to more pressing ambitions, the department offers two PG diploma courses. One in Human Resource Management and ethics and another in Ethics and Bio-Technology.
Both courses are relevant to present-day businesses and young people who have attended them seem to have found placement.
I suppose if campuses and industry have pow-wow sessions often, the student community can be offered lots of interesting options.
Which is what another group of us have offered students who attended a diploma course in tourism conducted by the same University.
Marketing and conducting heritage walks in Thamizh.
Whenever we arrange such walks in our city - in Fort St. George, Mylapore, San Thome or at railway stations - we feel bad that we seem to have created such options only for the English-knowing community.
So we are now making an attempt to have heritage walks conducted in Thamizh and hope to motivate a group of young people to take the lead.
Which brings me to a 'summer holidays' theme I often broach.
Now hols should be just that - great hols. Trekking in the Nilgiris; driving down the Konkan, hibernating in the plantation bungalow of your friend's cousin's friend in Coorg.
And then there are Summer Camps!
And there are Summer Jobs. You not only earn money but you also gain valuable experience.
I would urge tech-savvy young people to launch a web site exclusively for Summer Jobs in this city, push businesses to make commitments and drive school and college students to the web site.
If such options already exist, do let me know - at email@example.com.
I don't need a job; I need a break!