K'taka rolls out guidance scheme for students' careers

K'taka rolls out guidance scheme for students' careers

Credit: DH

The state government on Sunday kick-started the launch of Youth Empowerment Centres to offer career guidance and support for students across the state.

The inaugural ceremony was held during the commemoration of Swami Vivekananda’s birth anniversary at the Kanteerava Indoor Stadium on Sunday. The government described the empowerment centres as a means of giving students critical guidance to secure them employment after education.

“One centre is being opened in every district as of now,” explained Anirudh Shravan, Director of Collegiate Education, adding that the centres are not only intended to help students find employment after graduation but also helping them stay in education.

“The centres will offer career guidance, help get students access to skill-building courses and help with job placement,” Shravan said, clarifying that while the programme is meant for all students across the state, it is currently limited to government college students. 

Laptop distribution

The occasion also saw the government launch a programme to provide free laptops to first-year degree students studying in government colleges. Dr Rajkumar Khatri, Additional Chief Secretary of Higher Education, clarified that 1,09,916 laptops would be distributed to students fulfilling the required criteria from Sunday onwards.

“We hope that the distribution of these laptops will increase the skills of students who receive them,” Khatri said.

A government official clarified after the event that the total cost of the project came to about Rs 300 crore, with each of the distributed Acer or Hewlett-Packard laptops costing the state exchequer Rs 28,000.

“The supply of the machines will be completed in a month and we will have them distributed to students 15 days after that,” clarified Shravan.

Much of this effort is a move to upskill students to help them adapt to the changing employment scenario worldwide, explained Deputy Chief Minister Ashwath Narayan.

He added, however, that enrollment in skill training has not reached the levels hoped for. “The gross enrollment ratio in skill-based education in the state is currently hovering around 30%; we hope to raise it to 60% within 10 years,” Narayan said.

The Deputy CM also cautioned students against reaching for the stars. “Don’t just depend on white-collar jobs but also seek out blue-collar positions,” he said.

CM once sold lemons

The statement prompted Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa to disclose that his own academic life had been difficult. “When I was a student in Mandya, I must confess to you that I sold vegetables and lemons to get by,” he said, adding that grit and perseverance came with big payoffs. 

“Today, I stand before you as a chief minister,” he said.

The event also saw an MoU by the ICICI Bank to offer training and job placement for 2,500 students.

Meantime, Cisco systems, also exchanged an MoU with the state government over its ‘Mentor Together’ programme, to help give students access to mentorship. 

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