If one asks the undergrad students, who are just on the verge of attending their final exams of university life, what is their biggest concern right now, what could be the most common answer? To guess the answer, one does not need to be a rocket scientist. Not the exam that is coming, most of the answers will be the career waiting afterwards. Pursuit for a stable job is now more important than ever, as the job market has become uncertain in the aftermath of the pandemic. Therefore, one must be careful of the decisions they make today for a secure and prosperous tomorrow.
University of Dhaka miss now-a-days, a very common picture that is of a long queue of bags in front of the Central Library of the campus. Those bags are usually placed there even before dawn; however, the queues are missing due to pandemic. These bags belong to the students who sacrifice their night's sleep in studying and going to the library to prepare for an exam so important to them that they are fully dedicated to pass. Yes, the discussion here is about the Bangladesh Civil Services (BCS) examination, the road that leads to the most prestigious job in the country.
BCS is the examination one needs to pass to get appointed in government services. It is an opportunity to join the government services and change things as an insider. The exam happens countrywide, is highly competitive, and has three core stages. This exam is specifically open for Bangladeshi nationals aged between 21 and 30, who have at least attained their undergraduate degree. The three stages of the exam include the preliminary exam, the written exam, and the viva-voce. The BCS exam is attended by over two hundred thousand candidates every year. The competition for each of the job positions is beyond description. Yet, every year the applications only increase in numbers. But what motivates the youth to compete in the country's most competitive exams? What makes the civil services a much sought after job sector in Bangladesh?
Asadullah Fahim (pseudonym) is a BCS (admin) cadre who joined the service three years ago and is currently continuing his service in Chuadanga. He secured his position in 35th BCS. When asked about his inspiration for sitting in the exam, he said, "To pursue higher education abroad is a dream of all. But not everyone is fortunate enough to get that chance. So I decided to stay in my motherland and serve the people here through my job. Bangladesh Civil Services is the best option if one wants to serve the country and has the best job security at the same time."
The struggle and hard work it takes to overcome this highly competitive exam is no mystery to anyone. Every BCS cadre today has a story of struggles and determination to tell. "It was months of hard and detailed preparations along with preparing myself to be suitable for appearing in the viva voce. All my hard work finally paid off when I got appointed and I must say I enjoy my workplace very much," the officer added.
Now, after being successful in own mission, he finds it pleasant to help people who seek it from them. "When we are truly able to assist someone seeking our help, it brings us great joy and satisfaction. My seniors have always guided me and made my working atmosphere easy. Obviously, the job security assures me of financial safety," Mr Fahim mentioned.
As the 41st BCS preliminary exam is just a month away, job seekers will be very keen on seeking motivation; and who is a better option to take motivation from than a senior officer who has been in the services for a long time? Najmul Alam Nobin, upazila nirbahi officer (UNO) of Bhandaria, has been on the service for a while now. "It is good to be motivated by dreams in career building, but it should be balanced with the sense of professionalism as well. To serve the people properly, it is important to have self confidence and motivate one's own self with the drive to work more proficiently. Those who have the skill to balance their head and heart and are determined to work with honesty can join the public services, I think," Najmul said.
When asked about the benefits of joining the services as a cadre, he answered, "Certainly, it is a secured job that rightly appeals the youth to join the public services. It allows one to mix with a variety of people and gives a chance to make a difference in society. When our services change the life of a distressed person, we find ourselves in a very peaceful state of mind. The youth should consider joining the services though it is a hard and stressful path from applying to finally being appointed."
The preparation of the BCS exam is a time consuming practice that needs serious dedication towards studies and gaining knowledge. Though it is a difficult target to achieve, every year thousands of aspirants sit and toil for the limited cadre positions in the respected civil services. For passionate young people who are in search of a career that promises job security and gives the chance to serve the people of the nation, it is a respected job sector that beats many others with its vast preference.
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