Why This Age Bar?
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Matt was 45 years old when I met him in Arizona State University (ASU). He was doing his 7th semester of his Bachelors in Civil Engineering while I was doing my second semester of my Masters in Civil Engineering. He had two kids of which one will be graduating from high school (12th grade) next year and may potentially join ASU (he ended up in
). Both of us
worked in the same project and we become very good friends. He was working with
Federal Government as an Environmental Regulator for over 15 years after taking
few courses related to that when he felt that he should do his Bachelors in
Civil Engineering. He resigned the job and joined ASU full time for his
Bachelors at the age of 41. He was a warehouse of knowledge with the tons of
experience he had and I learned a lot from his association. University
Moving forward 7 years – when I was about to finish my Ph.D and looking for a job, he recommended my name to his boss in his company and that got me the first job in US. Initially I was working with him and learned all the tricks of the trade.
Now another of my friend – Rick – he was 50 years old when I met him in the first semester of my Masters in one of the classes. We need to do a project and this professor formed the groups randomly. Rick and I were picked by the professor as a team to do the project. That was the start of a great friendship that is going strong even now. Being my first semester in US, his story was unbelievable for me. From the age of 18, Rick was a construction worker, married at the age of 19 and had four kids by the age of 24. Now here he is at the age of 50 doing his Civil Engineering Bachelors.
Eight years back at the age of 42 he felt that he should learn more about construction and joined a community college and took some courses related to construction. He found those courses interesting and at the age of 44 decided to enroll for engineering in ASU. He graduated with a CGPA of 3.8/4.0. His practical knowledge derived from 30 years of work experience was beyond words.
Why am I talking about Matt and Rick now? If they were born in
there dream of becoming a Civil Engineer could never has fulfilled. I was
surprised to see that there is age restriction as well as restriction on number
of attempts for all major exams in India. See below the advertisement of IIT
entrance this year. Only those born on or after October 1988 can appear for the exam!
If someone like Matt or Rick wants to study in IIT after few years of practical experience, they never can. Rick and Matt got admitted in ASU after going through the entire admission process of ASU for Bachelors degree. Shouldn’t we in
India should also encourage such
practice than restricting admission based on date of birth and number of