Academia follows the corporate world. In the west, the professors are closely linked with the corporates in terms of their research and grants helping them keep their academic material closely in sync. The Professors at the University of Pennsylvania (where we studied), used to take sabbaticals and spend time at Google or Facebook turning their research into some serious money making businesses for these companies. Who benefits from this approach – The companies, the Professors and ultimately the students, who are trained and taught the most recent material from the so called “horse’s mouth”.
Why Indian Engineering Graduates Are Not Employable
The trend in India is very different, with more than 2500 engineering colleges, the quality of education is questionable. With only a few thousand students making to the top 25 colleges, the rest of the students are absorbed by the remaining colleges. We would like to classify these colleges as grade B+ and below. Unfortunately most of these colleges have material which is outdated, and so is the teaching style with young lecturers trying their hands at teaching if nothing else. These students end up getting jobs at mass recruiters like the Indian IT Industry and some of them opting for higher education. As mentioned above academia follows the corporate, and in India’s case we are following the Indian IT industry, which as a matter of fact is going through very rough seas at the moment. Without going into much detail about which you can read here, we would like to drive straight to the point, which is the technology world is moving at a very high pace even for the Indian companies to catch up, leave alone the academic institutes. And this is why the employability of engineering graduates is a real concern today.
What does the above average engineer who worked hard all these years following the curriculum religiously should do when told the skill set is obsolete in terms of the technologies being worked on today? Its heart breaking – we know. The academia is not going to change its content overnight, nor are the archaic teaching methods suddenly follow modern methods.
Here are some tips for Engineering students wishing to pursue IT/CS based careers:
1) Start working on your own mini projects. That will keep you motivated to learn new things on your own – you never know it could be the next unicorn.
2) Spend a lot of time understanding the theoretical concepts in Computer Science. These are hard, but this is going to take you places for sure.
3) MOOC – Coursera, udemy and many others. Start taking these courses. The drop rates are high in MOOC, but your are being provided the best of courses from the best of teachers. Go for it.
4) Be curious about technology. A lot the businesses today would not be able survive in the next 5 years, better start learning how pick up trends.
5) Interact with older engineers. They have seen it all, from tape disks, to floppy drives to memory cards/flash disks. Learn from them as much as you can, they learnt things the hard way.
6) Read. Read. Read.
We at DD Step are working towards bridging this employability gap in India.
So for a one of one consultation about your career in this space, you can get in touch with us at ddstep.in.