Long wait for Anna University counselling and seat uncertainity are worrying, say parents

CBSE students aspiring for an engineering seat are increasingly knocking at the doors of deemed universities, not wanting to lose time — and a chance for admission in a decent college — by waiting for Anna University to begin its counselling. The trend is on the rise because many of these universities boast of advanced infrastructure facilities and excellent placement records.

Two years ago, when D. Kumar's daughter, despite standing third in the State in class-XII CBSE examinations, did not get a seat in the most reputed colleges under Anna University, he learnt a lesson that he remembers even today.

“Deemed universities have caught up over the last few years. I am hoping my son gets into SRM or VIT merit list so that he doesn't have to wait for the single window counselling,” he says, waiting for this son to come out, after writing the SRM entrance on Sunday.

“There is little that CBSE students can choose from. Very few of them make it to the government engineering colleges through counselling. For those who cannot afford management seats, merit lists at deemed universities remain the best option,” says K.G. Pushkar, a parent. Deemed universities assert there is at least a 20 per cent increase in the number of applications received in 2012 when compared to last year.

Anna University's method of normalisation of scores of students from various boards is to blame for, say many parents. S. Vaidhyasubramaniam, dean (Planning and Development), Sastra University, feels the process of taking the maths-physics-chemistry score to normalise leads to faulty marking as there are many students with the maximum score.

Most deemed universities have scheduled their counselling sessions in May and June, much ahead of Anna University counselling or even NIT admissions through AIEEE. While these universities cite UGC norms as the reason for advancing their schedule, students say many of them give up on waiting for the AIEEE results that decide admissions to over 27 NITs.

“But what if you don't get through AIEEE? This thought worries us and therefore, we feel securing a seat in a deemed university is the safest bet, especially if you are a CBSE student,” says Karun Padmanabhan, a class XII student.

V. Rhymend Uthariaraj, secretary, Tamil Nadu Engineering Admissions, has urged parents and students to be patient because there are nearly 1.6 Lakh B. Tech/ B.E. seats available under the single window system across the State. There are 525 engineering colleges under the Anna University in Tamil Nadu. “If a student applies for counselling in Anna University, he will definitely get a seat,” Mr. Uthariaraj says.

But parents are not satisfied with just any college seat. “It takes nearly five years for a college to have a good mechanical laboratory. The new colleges go for courses that do not need much investment. I want my son to get the best,” says R. Swaminathan, a parent.

The fact that most deemed universities begin their counselling procedures by mid-May and finish it off by June forces parents to book seats in these colleges. “I have already booked a seat in VIT by paying Rs. 30,000. I am willing to forego the money if my daughter gets admission in a good NIT. The fact that Anna University stretches admission till August is not good as there is no point getting a seat in some far-flung college. VIT or SRM is a much better choice,” says P. Balasubramaniam, another parent.

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Vasudha VenugopalJune 28, 2012