What happens when Arts is born into a family of science?
My BE (Mechanical) father got married to my BSc (Biology) mother. I was born a year later. I didn’t have a name yet. But my MS (Physics) uncle who adored me felt my personality had some “chemistry”. That’s it! I was named Chemistry by my family. My life revolved around chemical equations and carbon chains. I saw pride in my family’s eyes when they spoke about my chemical engineering future – Like father, like daughter.
Most homes are filled with music, politics, or sports; mine was filled with talk of carbon chains and inert gases. It was all Science, all the time. And yet, there I was: copying verses from my favorite writers – R. K. Narayan,
J.K. Rowling, and Toni Morrison – and inserting them between the pages of my thick, boring, chemistry textbook.
Why? So that I could enjoy Harry Potter when I should have been studying Hydrogen Peroxide. I went into an existential crisis. I just could not relate to my name or my pre-determined future. How should I tell my parents I am Arts and not Science?
Enter ProTeen; literally. One day, in walks the principal to introduce us to this app.
ProTeen is a smart application that equips high school and college students with the awareness and skills to make sound academic and career choices. At its heart is a free assessment that scientifically pinpoints an individual’s strengths by evaluating that which determines them: the union of core skills, interests, and passions. Together these attributes tell us who we are, and in which fields we are most likely to succeed.
They form a “fingerprint” of potential.
That evening I shut myself up in my room and downloaded the app. I answered a series of easy questions framed by 24 parameters of aptitude, personality, interest and multiple intelligences. It took just 20 minutes to compete the profile builder.
And then with the push of a button, the results flashed before me.
My greatest strength: creative ability!
Followed closely by interpersonal ability. Numeric ability, on the other hand, was hardly a strength at all.
And scientific reasoning? Nowhere near the top. ProTeen told me what I could not tell myself. I am Arts, not Chemistry!
I gathered all my courage and without wasting any time, broke the news to my family:
“Apps are just for fun.” “Findings are incorrect.” “You are mistaking a hobby as your strength.” They started brushing me off.
I showed them. There is deep science behind ProTeen’s assessment engine, which integrates the findings of cutting-edge research in cognitive psychology, developmental psychology,
and occupational sciences like Bloom’s Taxonomy, Holland’s Occupational Themes, and Gardner’s Theories of Multiple Intelligences. Next, they displayed a series of
stereotyped doubts and worries. “You score good marks in your science tests, why would you then take literature?” “Arts doesn’t have a future.”
ProTeen equipped me to quell this doubt, too. With research-backed data for 16 industry segments and over 600 careers, the app enabled me to explore suitable careers based on my individual strengths and interests.
I immersed myself in career demos, engaged in career role plays, and ascertained the market value of jobs that appealed to me.
Thanks to ProTeen, I shed my false identity with conviction. Soon after my family accepted my strengths and proudly re-named me Arts.
7 years later…
Hello, it’s been 7 years since my family stood behind my Arts future. And I haven’t disappointed them since.
I see proud faces of my BE (Mechanical) father, BSc Biology mother and MS (Physics) uncle as they take their seats in the front row of the auditorium. Today is my graduation day.
Henceforth, I will be proudly known as
MA (Journalism), and this is my story.
INSPIRED BY A TRUE STORY
This story has been inspired by true events. Sukanya Sarkar was born into a family of doctors and engineers based out of Assam, India. She was the first one in her family to pursue Arts. Later, Sukanya went on to pursue a Master’s in Mass Communication and Journalism. Today, she has already worked with some of the best companies in the world bringing value to her employers. Her family is proud that she realized her true calling at the right time and chose her career based on her own passions, interests and skills. Stories like Sukanya’s is what inspired ProTeen’s founders to build a platform that would change the way students and parents make academic and career decisions.