A student entering college this academic year will have many questions in mind. Should he or she take up regular conventional courses or think long-term and go out of the beaten track by choosing emerging technologies?

Higher education experts who spoke at ‘The Hindu Education Plus Fair 2009’ in Madurai on May 2 suggested the latter and gave the students some specific fields which are “going to rule the world.”

The vice-chancellor of Kalasalingam University at Krishnankoil, C. Thangaraj, said that four scientific fields and 40 technologies related to them would dominate the world in future. The four fields are nanotechnology, biotechnology, information technology and sustainable development/environment.

“Every student must be thinking of which discipline he or she should enter to get a job quickly. What are the skills needed to get a job? I will only say that students must think of year 2015 and beyond because by that time the emerging technologies would start dominating,” Dr. Thangaraj told the participants.

His suggestion for the youngsters was they should look beyond the current academic year. Few emerging technologies suggested by him were: computer-aided surgery in medical field, protein engineering, genomics, linguistics specialisation/translation techniques, cell therapy, biochips, ‘intelligent’ artificial limbs and so on.

Another set of ideas came from career consultant analyst Jayaprakash A. Gandhi, who made an exhaustive presentation at the fair.

He told the students to consider taking up the agriculture engineering course in Anna University, which according to him, will offer good career prospects because of the importance attached to irrigation/agriculture projects.