Tuesday, June 29, 2004

An option to bank on

Q. What exactly is investment banking and how does one become an investment banker?

Krishen Khosa

A. Much has been written about investment bankers — especially about how much money they make — but very little about what they do besides trying to collect big fees.

Investment bankers identify joint venture partners, define acquisition strategy, structure and enter into joint venture agreements, and successfully execute a merger or acquisition (M&A). They also help to raise private equity capital.

An investment banker must possess a solid grasp of accounting, finance and legal issues, which affect the business along with a good understanding of all business facets.

Although a CA is equally qualified for the job, an MBA with specialisation in finance from a good B-school is what companies look at the entry level.

A stint at a real job in a big industrial enterprise would also be helpful, especially if you intend to become a so-called industry specialist. It actually helps to have at least a notional understanding of the business you are trying to finance, buy, sell, or restructure.

The National Stock Exchange's Certification in Financial Markets (NCFM) will equip you with practical knowledge and skills for openings in treasury. For details log onto: ww.nsdl.co.in/certification/exam.html.

Distance learning

Q. I am a working woman. Kindly advise me on the universities that offer MA Psychology through correspondence. Is MA Psychology through correspondence beneficial?

Amandeep Kaur

A. Masters in psychology through correspondence is offered only by a handful of universities: Nalanda University, Patna (Bihar); Mother Teresa Women's University, Chennai (TN).

The minimum requirement is an overall 40 per cent at the Bachelor's level in any discipline. The notification is usually issued in April in all major newspapers.

M.Sc Psychology: Annamalai University, Annamalainagar (TN) (MSc--Applied Psy). www.annamalaiuniversity.ac.in

Sri Venkateshwara University, Tirupati-517502

University of Madras, Institute of Correspondence Education, Chennai (TN)

(www.universityofmadras-ice.ac.in). Elig: BA/BSc in Psychology.

For further details and list of study centres in your city, log on to the respective university websites.

After competing spostgraduation you can pursue a PG Diploma in Psychology (like counselling, child development etc) to add value to your career.

Eligibility for MBBS

Q. I have appeared for plus exams and am currently preparing for Medical Entrance. My date of birth is April 16, 1988. Am I eligible for the MBBS course?

— Kamaljot Singh

A. Eligibility criterion for admission to any medical/dental College is 17 years as on December 31 of the year of admission. You can devote one full year for preparation of the entrance test next year and also simultaneously seek admission to a Bachelor's degree course (like B.Sc) or Bachelor's in Physiotherapy/Occupation Therapy for the current session as a good standby option.

Scope for physiotherapists

Q. I am a student of Class XII (Sc). Please tell me about the job opportunities, especially abroad, for physiotherapists.

— Amarpreet Chaddha

A. As compared to other paramedical professions, employment opportunities for physiotherapists are excellent, as this is a career where the demand exceeds supply. The requirement for physiotherapists in India and abroad, especially in countries like the USA, Canada and Australia is immense.

Physiotherapists play an important role in the treatment of patients with muscular and cerebral problems. Like all other medical and paramedical professionals, physiotherapists work in hospitals, orthopaedic departments, rehabilitation centres for the handicapped, schools for the mentally retarded and physically disabled children, healthcare centres and defence medical establishments. Physiotherapists can also opt for teaching, while those with adequate capital can establish private clinics of their own.

The initial remuneration of physiotherapists in government hospitals varies between Rs. 3500 and Rs 5000. But private hospitals offer a relatively better package, starting around Rs 7,500 and going up to Rs 10,000 per month. The remuneration for established private practitioners can be nearly Rs 20,000 to 40,000 per month.

Most physiotherapists with a five-year experience can start their own practice. They charge usually around Rs. 250 to 400 per sitting. Ayurvedic massage techniques can be incorporated into the treatment to make it more holistic.

Away from life on sea

Q. I am an engineer in the merchant navy. Could you suggest some areas I could move into if I opt out of sea life?

— Ramesh Kotnis

A. If you wish to capitalise on your training and experience at sea, you could choose to work on shore, specialising in cargo shipment or maintenance. You could become a nautical surveyor for insurance companies. You could also represent manufacturers of shipping equipment.

Merchant navy admission

Q. Could you please tell me about the procedure for direct admission to the merchant navy.

A. Shipping companies directly recruit fresh candidates for marine engineering as well as navigation. Be on the lookout for their ads in leading national dailies and apply to them directly. At least 60 per cent in Class XII (PCM) and medical fitness are the basic requirements. For the navigation branch (as a Deck Cadet, you need 6/6 vision in both eyes without glasses; for marine engineering however, glasses up to plus or minus 2.5 are permitted.)

Caution: Direct by no means spells 'easy'. You'll slog hard on board before you can start taking the competency exams that qualify you for working at sea. You have to study hard to ace these exams. In fact, to move up in your career — both in marine engineering and navigation — you have to keep clearing one level of examination after another. So, by no means must you look upon this as a soft option.

It may be a good idea to subscribe to a shipping journal like ‘Sailors Today’ or ‘Marex Bulletin’
(www.marexbulletin.com ).

Also, there is scope for starting your own consultancy service.

— Pervin Malhotra

Please send in your query, preferably on a postcard, along with your full name, complete address and academic qualifications to: Editor, Jobs and Careers, The Tribune, Sector 29, Chandigarh-160020, or at jobs@tribunemail.com