Published: 18th January 2021
How an FB post motivated Prof Shankar Bellur's to set up YouTube channel to do career counselling
Shankar Bellur, an author and career coach guides students to choose the right path for them. He speaks about his plans to set up a Career Lab for students and using technology to help them
When Professor Shankar Bellur, an author and a career coach for youngsters read a Facebook post a few months ago, he was shocked. The post read, 'Please don't trouble or stop parents who will be cremating their children who died by suicide'. This post was up on Facebook when the class 12 results were announced in Karnataka. Shankar recalls, "I immediately messaged the person and requested them to take the post down as I felt that there was no importance or value to a student's life in what was said. However, the person explained that one of his relatives had recently died by suicide due to failing in the Board exams." That's when he decided to start his own eponymous YouTube channel to motivate class 10 and 12 students.
Telling us what he covers in his videos, Shankar says, "In the first video, I spoke about why marks are not more important than life and what might be the reasons for their failure. Not just reasons, I have mentioned how they can rectifying these mistakes. Fortunately, when I posted the video link on social media and other platforms and shared it with college students, I got good responses from them. Students started messaging me to post a few more videos on career choices. Hence, the process went on and I posted videos on the different careers students can opt for, the job market in India and abroad and so on. So far, I have posted more than seven videos and students have mailed or messaged me personally that it has helped them a lot."
Shankar's videos are getting good traction. But what's next? Professor Shankar, who is the author of the book At the Crossroads, has some big plans for students. "Being a career coach, parents and students come to me for counselling and career guidance. I even visit colleges to deliver lectures on various trending topics. But I want to set up a Career Lab either in Mysuru or Bengaluru. Whenever a student approaches us for career guidance, we suggest different options based on their strengths and weaknesses. However, all this happens through sessions and the kids don't get to experience anything practically. But once this Career Lab is set up, students can experience the career or profession virtually for 30 minutes. They will get to understand the nuances of the profession and what is right for them."
Shankar cites an example and says, "If a student aims to get into digital marketing or journalism, then the lab and tools there will help them experience the life of a digital marketing professional, the challenges they face and how they make decisions. It will help the students think better and objectively. I feel technology can help me in providing quality career guidance for students." If everything goes well, then Shankar's Career Lab will soon be the right place for students to make the right career choices.