How Engineering Students Dangle In The College-Corporate Gap
By Joanna Sundharam:
After four years, ninety courses, twenty-four sets of exams, six projects, countless reports and endless lectures, engineering students realize that all that we have studied is obsolete and absolutely worthless from the industry point of view. Isn’t the whole point of education that we should be able to have a career and seamlessly integrate ourselves with the corporate sector? But sadly, the reality is very different from seamless integration. The curriculum is nowhere near what the industry demands and corporates want to spend minimum time training students. This is the situation of most non-IIT, non elite engineering colleges.
The flaw in the curriculum and structure of engineering courses comes into the picture during the placements. For three and a half years, students slog it out, with unending exams, submitting papers, reports and projects, only to realize in the final semester that they don’t have any knowledge of what the industry requires. Then starts the saga of the four week computer courses, fake certificates and online tutorials.
One of the most common lines, lashed out at students in technical interviews is “Aapko knowledge nahi industry ki, abhi latest technology ka kuch nahi pata aapko”. How exactly is a student supposed to have industry knowledge without the right courses and industry exposure? The curriculum suggests, two months of summer/industrial training in the 3rd and the 4th year. There is absolutely no assistance from the college and students are expected to fend for themselves. Companies are not willing to train students for just two months, because it makes no business sense to them. A few Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) that do undertake industrial training, don’t really teach anything, it is just mere eyewash. Students run from pillar to post, to get an internship, but at the end of the day, only those who know someone, ‘high-up-there’ make the cut. The rest of the students are left with no choice.
When the placement season starts, companies have several rounds of written tests, technical interviews, etc. They skim off the cream, the ones who need to be trained the least, before they join the company. It is sad, how students aren’t given the right opportunities, and at the end of the course, they are left with a feeling of injustice.