Prof PB Sharma, VC of Delhi Technological University
ACCORDING to statistics, you will find that in many states as many as 20,000-30,000 engineering seats have been going vacant every year. What surprises me is that AICTE and Government of India are allowing the opening up of more and more colleges and increasing intake everywhere. This has resulted in low employability, a shortage of qualified faculty and a technical education system, which is largely unmanageable. Correct this before it’s too late.
Don’t just harp on increasing the Gross Enrolment Ratio (GER) as an education policy. Rather, ensure that increase in GER is matched by a firm resolve and commitment to create the necessary knowledge and academic character. It is the quality of faculty and students that decide quality of the final output. Hence don’t dilute the standards for admissions to a mere pass percentage or admit students with almost zero marks in the entrance exam. Invest heavily in education at the primary and secondary level to ensure a steady flow of quality students to engineering and technology disciplines at the university level.
AICTE has a proactive role to play in revitalising engineering education in our countryProf. P.B. SharmaVC, Delhi Technological University
Calling talented teachers
We are the only country in the world where the talented ones do not want to turn to teaching. Rather, they run towards high-paying careers. Who will teach our children and grandchildren tomorrow if the talented ones graduating from our universities do not come into the teaching profession? Today, the top 30% of every discipline would have no urge and inspiration to come for teaching, let alone toppers and gold medallists. Yet, exceptions are there and these exceptions are attracted towards high-profile institutions like IITs, DTU and others, leaving thousands of our technical institutions with a shortage of talent.
Perks of being a teacher
As a teacher, I get an opportunity to work in the company of highly talented youth of this country. I get an opportunity for unlimited professional growth and advancement and to excel in my own chosen area of research; also, to earn by marketing my capability to industry and society. Which profession in the world is going to give you that? If you add reward of society’s recognition of one’s talent and wisdom, along with the pay package, it is much more than what you can get even as a CEO, MD or Chairman of any corporation. We have to see it from that perspective, not just the pay package we get.
What AICTE must do
Employability is a major issue today. Imagine if the 25-30% employability levels of today could be increased to 75-80% tomorrow? India will be flooded with high quality, capable engineering manpower which can provide a major advantage to foster a new wave of industrial economy. AICTE has a proactive role to play in revitalising engineering and technology education in our country. It must support the growth of industry-academia partnership and recognise and support programmes in this regard. It should have a major incentive built into its funding system for research and development, to promote innovative product development. Such initiatives should be pursued by undergraduate students and faculty.