The first page of my college diaries starts with the sight of Delhi College of Arts and Commerce, fondly referred to as DCAC. It was back in 2012 and I had walked through the walls which resembled that of a hospital wing to take admission in the English course there.
While the first (newer) building looked like a health clinic, the older one was being repaired and remodeled. It smelled of cement and sweat every time I ran around trying to get all my documents in one place.
Delhi College of Arts and Commerce or DCAC was established in 1987. Trying to find its footing in the then expanding Delhi University family, DCAC finally found its home in Netaji Nagar (near Sarojini Nagar). A little distant from the base establishments of the renowned south campus of Delhi University, DCAC has gradually made its way in the list of leading colleges of India.
Love at first sight?
Despite its “it is good college” name, my first meeting with DCAC was not encouraging, and I had no hopes that further acquaintance would make any difference. However, after struggling to reconcile with my fate, swallowing the bitter pill of acceptance and coming to terms with the fact that, that was the place I was ultimately heading to, I made my way to the first class.
I don’t know when it really started, but while Professor Vasant Sharma walked through the lanes of Pride and Prejudice with us in tow, I fell in love with my college. It did not happen the way John Green had said it would, “slowly at first and then all of a sudden”. It did not happen like the million of stories I had read about love at first sight. It happened gradually and without my even realizing it.
I started seeing the college for what it, and without the film of prejudice covering my eyes. I enjoyed the college functions, looked ugly (without even trying) on days when HT City organized fresh face competitions and complained about the tight space and the small grounds throughout.
It was only by the end of 1st year that I realized we actually had a play ground in our college. Tucked away under the arms of the canteen, the playground looked more of rubble ground from afar. I chanced to peep in one day and discovered beautiful flowers and green grass, behind the ugly looking canteen.
Let us talk about the canteen
No, no amount of love could ever make that canteen look pretty or the food taste nice. The only time I thought the canteen actually looked well enough, was when it was all dressed up with the flyers during the elections. No part of its brown walls would be visible and it was the prettiest it could manage to look. How I hope somebody could have covered the food with flyers to make it taste good too. Sigh!
While the food quality never improved, I did discover many things about DCAC. I discovered that there was a thing like MUN and how people actively participated in it. I discovered how important virtual internships were and how everyone made it a point to do at least one every year, or a summer or winter internship as they saw fit. I became a part of the Tanzeal society which looked after the education of underprivileged children and I discovered the joys of spotting peacocks flirting with the cloud.
Cut-off from the rest of the activity
Though it was always brimming with life, Delhi College of Arts and Commerce could never be a part of the hubbub which is generally associated with Delhi University colleges. It was always cut-off from the rest of the team, playing alone. It was a good thing, but not always when you had to travel especially to south or north campus to get your course books and when you had to tell your friends exactly where it was because it was so detached from the rest of the horde.
DCAC always missed out on all the collective fun of the university, and while it had a good share of its own, the College fests still lagged a little behind. It was finally in my last year of college that the college fest actually picked up pace. And Oh how it did it. With elan.
The sea of people filling the ground and dancing late into the evening was an amazing sight. Especially since the crowd was so well behaved despite being drunk on the face of the Badlapur (movie released in 2015) crew.
I miss my college for what it was, but more importantly for what it was not, a part of the crowd. Surprisingly, I miss the canteen food too, but most importantly I miss the freedom of college life and how I filled my college diaries, one after another with all the entertaining and inspiring classes and the memories of the multiple bunks.
Enjoyed the story? To learn more about different colleges, stay tuned to the Letsintern blog. And since we know how nervous you must be about your first day college of day and how excited to fill in your own college diaries, we advice you to read through these tips.