Campus placements, along with their many advantages for college students starting out in life, can also be a traumatic experience for those who get placed much later or do not get placed at all; and for the differently-abled students, the fight for a job is intensified as they compete with a disadvantage that has nothing to do with academic records or performances during entrance tests and interviews. However, as Delhi University gears up for the placement season scheduled to start this Tuesday, this dismal scene is all set to change.

“There are four companies that are going to visit on the first day, out of which Teach for India, an NGO that sends teachers to rural places to teach, and Jaipur Rugs, a carpet manufacturing company, have promised to consider physically challenged students before others. While the NGO is looking for graduates in any discipline, Jaipur Rugs will hire only management students,” said Delhi University's placement cell officer Gulshan Sawhney.Two more companies who are scheduled to visit on Day One have agreed to think about hiring differently-abled students but have not given any concrete commitment, added Dr. Sawhney.

“Year after year we see these students never getting placed. Those of us working for students welfare and the Vice-Chancellor thought something had to be done for these students and therefore we started negotiating with the companies, telling them that these students be hired under their corporate social responsibility schemes and that they had to be placed first before they could start to place other students,” said Deputy Dean of Students Welfare Vipin Tiwari.

Mr. Tiwari said the University is planning to have skill assessment tests to ascertain the strengths and weaknesses of the differently-abled students to place them in the right jobs. According to Dr. Sawhney, around 21,000 students have registered for placements, out of which nearly 150 are differently-abled.