How to create industry-ready engineers

Last Updated : 04 October 2017, 18:55 IST
Last Updated : 04 October 2017, 18:55 IST

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According to traditional wisdom, an engineering degree guarantees a stable, well-paying office job. However, according to a recent survey, only 7% of the engineering graduates can handle core engineering tasks. As per the Ministry of Human Resource Development, India has 6,214 engineering and technology institutions which are enrolling 2.9 million students, and approximately 1.5 million engineers enter the job market every year. But they do not have adequate skills to be employed. The world needs skilled engineers who are better prepared to solve complex problems in an interdisciplinary, global context. 

Innovators of tomorrow

Today, there is a severe need to improve the quality of engineering education in India and equip future engineers to overcome the challenges in the new millennium, revive its lost glory, and progressively build future innovators of tomorrow.

Here are five ways through which engineering can bridge the existing gap between industry requirement and academic proficiency to produce a well-trained, disciplined work force that is in sync with the ever changing demand of corporate world:

Leverage technology: The advent of digital technologies and the proliferation of the Internet have paved the way for modern teaching and learning methods. Technology must be infused in the infrastructure of engineering colleges to transform learning, especially with the help of qualified teachers. Having state-of-the-art infrastructure ensures that the students receive an education that is not only high in quality, but also one that is based on excellence. Additionally, with facilities being supported by well-equipped laboratories, a modern computer centre, digital workstations and more, it ensures that students can stay ahead.

Experienced faculty: There is a huge need for faculty development both in terms of pedagogical development and engineering domain training. A transformation in the way courses are delivered, the pedagogy that is used and the assessment that is done is also required. Teaching and learning need to become more interactive.

Teaching tools such as labs, group presentations, discussion groups, debates, role-playing, and reviewing case studies also need to be included in the curriculum to positively improve the quality and relevance of their teaching, learning and research.

Industry-institute collaborations: Engineering colleges should aspire to build strong collaboration and partnerships with the industry through joint research projects, and also include arrangements for faculty to take up joint research collaboration, curriculum development and continuous education with industry and other renowned institutions. For this, institutes and industry need to work together and foster partnerships which are deep and profound. Internship for engineering students should also become a routine practice.

Innovation and entrepreneurship: engineering graduates also need to be innovative and entrepreneurial. They should be capable to contribute to building an innovation-driven ecosystem that creates economic prosperity and wealth. Each Engineering institution should focus on encouraging innovation and entrepreneurship, and develop entrepreneur skills in the curriculum. Institutes should not only aim at building better industry-institute relationships but also encourage and enhance the student’s interest towards entrepreneurship and business strategies, through start-up workshops.

Placements: Institutes should focus on finding the right job for the right student. Premium institutes are associated with core companies for on-campus placements with a mission to achieve 100% placement through hard work and dedication. They devise various programmes that aim at enhancing and honing the skills of students to meet industry expectations and build a bright future for themselves.

Good engineering colleges ensure that every academic and non-academic activity — whether it is cultural, corporate and entrepreneurial — are carefully designed to help every student find his or her own individuality in choosing a career and life that will make them an asset to their respective organisations and society as a whole.
(The author is executive director, Tula’s Institute, Dehradun)
Published 04 October 2017, 16:22 IST

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