EDUCATION TRIBUNE

Equip them for jobs
Need to make it employability part of education
S. S. Verma
Employability is the combination of factors and processes, which enable people to progress towards or get into employment, to stay in employment and to move on in the workplace. It is the means by which individuals can cope with changing employment conditions, organisations can maintain their ability to adapt and succeed and the nation can enhance its competitiveness.

MDU expands academic horizons
Shifts focus from traditional courses to professional courses
Sunit Dhawan
A
silent transformation is under way at Maharshi Dayanand University, Rohtak, with sweeping changes being effected in the university's academic programmes and its outlook in general. The university, which was conceived as a higher-learning institution dedicated to study of life sciences and applied sciences, is in the process of donning a new mantle of professional and job-oriented study programmes, and much more.

NCM chief justifies St. Stephen’s quota
NEW DELHI: National Commission for Minorities (NCM) chairman Syed Hamid Ansari has upheld the decision of India’s premier educational institution, St. Stephen's College, to earmark a small percentage of seats for Dalit Christians. “What St. Stephen’s did was perfectly legal.

Campus NoteS

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Equip them for jobs
Need to make it employability part of education
S. S. Verma

Employability is the combination of factors and processes, which enable people to progress towards or get into employment, to stay in employment and to move on in the workplace. It is the means by which individuals can cope with changing employment conditions, organisations can maintain their ability to adapt and succeed and the nation can enhance its competitiveness. For individuals, employability depends on the knowledge, skills and attitudes they possess, the way they use and present them to employers, and the context within which they seek work.

With increasing population and growing education levels, it is becoming tough to secure employment with changing factors of employability. Chances of employment with simple school, college or university education are limited. Professional institutes started by the government with employment guarantee some decades back are now turning into factories of academic certificates. The cost of education, corruption and nepotism make the process of employability difficult for the common candidate in general and the socio-economically disadvantaged youth in particular.

With modernisation and globalisation, quality education with guarantee of employability has become the need of the hour. The country has a more or less a do-it-yourself system for making the transition from school to work. What is learnt in school is not adequately related to what is needed to know to succeed after leaving school. The government policy is aimed more at producing more individuals looking to enter the job market, development and accreditation of knowledge and vocational skills and demonstration of assets.

Employability has to be an integral part of education. Institutions must not be committed only to quality education, but have a guarantee of employability. For a better career, the youth of today, supported by parents, are leaving no stone unturned in this direction. They are opting for private institutions, which are doing better than government institutions. Top professional institutions have launched new packages towards employability prospects of students.

Many individuals need support to overcome the physical and mental barriers to learning and development. Employability is not just about vocational and academic skills. Individuals need relevant and usable labour market information to help them decide about the labour market options. They may also need support to realise when such information will be useful, to interpret that information and to convert it into results. No responsibility is taken up in most government institutes to make employability sure. The administration has schemes, but only on paper.

Employers' dissatisfaction with young applicants is not primarily due to inadequate technical knowledge or skills, but due to lack of employability skills. Business and industry representatives express dissatisfaction with the general level of preparedness of prospective employees at the entry level. At least half of the youth leave school without the knowledge or foundation required to find and hold a good job.

There are many teachers and administrators who believe that students will pick employability skills and abilities incidentally in due course. Research on the effectiveness of approaches to teaching employability skills indicates that these skills are best learnt when they are included among instructional goals and are explicitly taught. In classes that teach employability skills effectively, instructors hold and communicate high expectations. They assume the role of facilitators and coaches. In classes where participants acquire a high level of employability skills, learning is individualised, determined by students' learning needs and styles.

Current interest in the concept of employability has been driven by the changing nature of the public employment policy, with increasing emphasis being given to skill-based solutions to economic competition and work-based solutions to social deprivation. As industry expands and more companies enter the country, it is felt that people do not have adequate skills for the jobs that will be on offer. In the time to come, employability will be the issue, not jobs. Carefully structured and thoughtfully conceived employability skill development will enable all individuals to develop self-confidence and motivation.


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MDU expands academic horizons
Shifts focus from traditional courses to professional courses
Sunit Dhawan

A silent transformation is under way at Maharshi Dayanand University (MDU), Rohtak, with sweeping changes being effected in the university's academic programmes and its outlook in general. The university, which was conceived as a higher-learning institution dedicated to study of life sciences and applied sciences, is in the process of donning a new mantle of professional and job-oriented study programmes, and much more.

Though the traditional academic courses are still popular among students, an increasing number of them now intend to grab a professional degree for better career prospects. While the academic disciplines entail study for the sake of acquiring knowledge, developing a fine taste for literary and art works and enhancing one's intellect, the job-oriented courses are considered a short-cut to material success.

The university, which primarily focused on the traditional courses till recently, has now got a new faculty of Performing and Visual Arts. An Advanced Centre for Biotechnology and an Institute of Hotel and Tourism Management have also been set up recently.

A new teaching department - of Engineering and Technology - offers B.Tech courses in Electronics and Communication Engineering, Computer Science Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Biotech Engineering. MCA, B.Pharma, Mass Communication and law courses are also popular among the students.

Another department established recently is the Department of Business Economics, which runs an MBA in Business Economics. This is apart from the Institute of Management Studies and Research (IMSAR), which offers MBAs in four specialisations.

Then, the MDU administration has launched an integrated MSc programme in mathematics with computer science, and plans to start M.Phil in Psychology and some short-term study programmes. Courses in French and Spanish are already running, while another one in Urdu is being shortly introduced.

"The underlying idea behind starting the new courses, teaching departments and academic disciplines is to move ahead with the changing times and equip our students with the skills required to survive and progress in the highly competitive world," asserts the MDU Vice-Chancellor, Prof R.S.Dhankar, during whose tenure a majority of changes have taken place.

Apart from starting the latest courses, several student-support service components have also been created in the recent past. These include Career Development Cell, Alumni Association Centre, Human Resources Development Centre and Consultancy Services Cell. Besides A Centre for Haryana Studies, Research Development and Patent Council and Foreign Students Cell have also been established.

Prof Dhankar reveals that several other measures had been taken like forging international linkages with prestigious foreign universities, introducing internal assessment system and merit scholarships, and so on. "The aim is to develop MDU as a centre of academic excellence with international linkages," he maintains.

Dissenting notes

The changes and development apart, there are certain sore points like the allegations of the MDU administration trying to dominate the university's Executive Council by downsizing the elected representation from the campus and not recording the dissenting notes; effecting unreasonable changes in the Ph.D programme; and not giving due weightage to the issues raised by the teachers' and non-teaching staff association.

"The indifferent attitude of the university authorities towards our genuine demands is uncalled for. What is even more agonizing is the non-implementation of the matters which have been agreed to by the administration. Certain issues such as time-bound clearing of promotion cases of faculty members and grant of Internet facility to them have been kept pending for years," says Dr Rajinder Chaudhary, president of the MDU Teachers Association. Some food for thought for the university authorities, this!


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NCM chief justifies St. Stephen’s quota

NEW DELHI: National Commission for Minorities (NCM) chairman Syed Hamid Ansari has upheld the decision of India’s premier educational institution, St. Stephen's College, to earmark a small percentage of seats for Dalit Christians. “What St. Stephen’s did was perfectly legal. Within the 50 per cent quota reserved for Christian students in the college they made a separate allocation for Scheduled Caste Christian students,” Ansari, a former diplomat and Vice-Chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University, told IANS in an interview.

“Since the government does not recognise the existence of Scheduled Castes among Muslims and Christians, the authorities asked students wanting to avail themselves of this reservation to secure a certificate from their local bishop.” Ansari said the proposal to reserve seats for SC, ST and OBC students in minority institutes was reasonable.” It only stands to logic,” he said.

The proposal to reserve 10 per cent seats for Dalit Christians in the college earlier this month has evoked mixed response from its alumni with some fearing that such radical changes would affect the reputation of the 125-year-old institution.

Last year the Human Resources Development Ministry had moved a proposal to fix reservation for SC, ST and OBC students in privately-owned educational institutions but to exclude the minority-run institutes from its purview. Currently, reservation for SC and ST exists in all government bodies and institutions. However, the process of reservations for various categories in private institutions stands stalled because the Supreme Court has stayed the reservation for OBCs even in government-run institutions. — IANS


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Campus NoteS

Haryana Agricultural University,
Hisar Research project sanctioned

The Haryana State Council for Science and Technology has sanctioned a research project on conservation of biodiversity of ber germplasm to Haryana Agricultural University.

Director of Research, Dr B.S. Chhillar said the project envisaged collection and conservation of endangered as well as superior varieties of ber-a fruit tree of arid regions.

He said the project would be carried out by a three-member team of scientists comprising Dr S.K. Sehrawat , Dr V.P. Ahlawat and Dr K.S. Boora of the Department of Horticulture of the university. Dr Chhillar said an extensive survey of Haryana and adjoining states would be carried out for two years, during which both the endangered germplasm of ber and its superior genotypes developed at various research stations in these states would be gathered and a repository created at the Horticulture orchard of the university. This material, he said, would be characterised further through morphological and biotechnological tools.

Water conservation

Haryana Agricultural University will promote conservation technologies for productive utilisation of water resources in agriculture in Haryana. The Central Water Commission, Ministry of Water Resources, has sanctioned Rs 50 lakh as grant for the implementation of this project.

Disclosing this a university spokesperson said 50 villages across the state would be covered under the project where the farmers would be motivated to adopt water saving technologies.

He pointed out that the university had done remarkably well in evolving water saving technologies for agriculture. Under the project, zero tillage, bed planting, laser land levelling and management of crop residue and saline soils technologies would be demonstrated in farmer-participatory manner in selected villages.

The Central Water Commission would provide the financial assistance for three crop seasons. The project would be implemented by the Directorate of Extension Education of the university.

In this regard, the Directorate of Extension Education was already making efforts through Krishi Vigyan Kendras to educate farmers about productive utilisation of water and resource conservation techniques. The villages selected for this project would later serve as models for other areas to emulate new technology.

Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar
Counselling schedule

The university will conduct counselling for admission to M.Sc (physics) part-I for 2007 on July 5 and 6. Dr B.S. Bajwa, head of the department, said counselling for all reserved category candidates who had qualified (20 per cent for SC/ST, 30 per cent for others) in the entrance test would be conducted on July 5 at 10 a.m. General category candidates having up to 64 marks in the test were advised to attend the admission interview on July 6 at the same time at the department. The list of candidates selected would be displayed on the notice board on the afternoon of July 9. He said the candidates must bring original certificates, failing which their candidature would not be considered. The approximate admission fee was Rs 17,000. — Contributed by Raman Mohan and Sanjay Bumbroo


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ADMISSION DEADLINE

Agriculture

Central Institute of Freshwater Aquaculture, PO Kausalyaganga Bhubaneshwar 751002 (Oris)

www.cifa.com

Various Training Programmes

Application Form: Download from website.

Details: Employment News (16-22 June 2007) / website

Armed Forces

Indian Army, NCC West Block IV, R K Puram, New Delhi 110066

www.joinindianarmy.nic.in

NCC Special Entry Scheme - April 2008 (SSC, OTA, Chennai)

Eligibility: Unmarried Males; Bachelors degree (50%), served 2 academic years in the senior Division of NCC, "B" grade in NCC "C" Certificate Exam

DoB: 02 January '83 - 01 January '89

Selection: SSB Interview; Psychological Aptitude Test; Medical Test.

Application Form: Apply in prescribed format on plain paper and send to the nearest OC, NCC Unit from where NCC 'C' certificate has been issued.

Details: Website

Application Deadline: 10 August 2007

Indian Air Force, PO Bag No 001, Nirman Bhawan Post Office, New Delhi 110011

www careerairforce.nic.in

SSC Men Flying (Pilot) Course - January 2008

Eligibility: Unmarried; Indian Male graduates (Maths & Physics in 10+2) / BE

DoB: 02 January '85 - 01 January '89 (Relaxable to 02 January '83 for CPL holders)

Minimum Height: 162.5 cm, Leg length: 99 cm - 120 cm. No colour / night blindness/ spectacles.

Selection: PABT; Personality Tests; Medical Exam.

Application Form: Apply on A-4 size plain paper in the prescribed format with all required documents & 2 stamped (Rs 22/-) self-addressed envelopes (23 cm x 10 cm) by ordinary post to the above address. Superscribe "30 SSC (W) F (P) Course" on envelope / download from website.

Details: Employment News (23 - 29 June 2007) / Website

Application Deadline: 30 July 2007

Civil Services

Union Public Service Commission, Dholpur House, Shahjahan Road, New Delhi 110069

www.upsc.gov.in

Geologist's Examination 2007

Eligibility: Masters degree (Geology /Applied Geology / Marine Geology / Mineral Exploration / Hydrogeology) / Diploma of Associateship in Applied Geology (ISM, Dhanbad).

Age: 21-32 years (on 01 January '07)

Application Form: Available at designated HPOs / POs all over the country: Rs 20/- (cash).

Details: Employment News (16-22 June 2007) / website.

Application Deadline: 16 July 2007

Engineering

University of Technology of Madhya Pradesh, Rajiv Gandhi Proudyogiki Vishwavidyalaya, Airport Bypass Road, Gandhi Nagar, Bhopal 462036 (MP)

www.rgtu.net

1) ME / MTech (Biotechnology)

2) ME / MTech (Energy Technology & Environment Mgmt)

3) ME / MTech (IT)

4) ME / MTech (Computer Science & Computer Technology & Application)

(School of IT)

5) ME / MTech in (Electrical / Electronic / Chemical / Mechanical / Civil Engg)

Eligibility: For 1: BTech / BE in Biotechnology / Biochemical Engg / Chemical Engg / Food Technology / Food & Fermentation Technology / Bio-medicine / Bio-Informatics / MSc (Life Science / Agriculture Science / Veterinary Science) / BPharm (55%).

For 2: BTech / BE / MSc (Environmental Science / Applied Chemistry / Applied Physics); 55%

For 3: BE / BTech (Computer Science / Electronics / IT); 55%.

For 4: BE / BTech / MCA / MSc (Computer Science); 55%.

For 5: BE / BTech in respective branch of Engg / Technology (55%)

Selection: Merit based. GATE scholarships are available. Non-GATE qualified students may be considered on merit but without any stipend.

Application Form & Details: Download from website

Application Deadline: 10 July 2007

Delhi College of Engineering, Faculty of Technology, Bawana Road, Delhi 110042 (Govt of NCT)

www.dce.edu

1) ME/ MSc Courses: In D/o: Applied Physics / Civil Engg / Electrical Engg / Electronics & Communication Engg / Mechanical Engg / Computer Engg / Applied Chemistry (Part Time / Full Time)

2) PhD Programmes:

a) D/o Civil Engg / Electrical Engg / Electronic & Communication Engg / Mechanical Engg / Production Engg / Computer Engg / IT / Polymer Technology

b) D/o Applied (Physics / Chemistry / Maths).

Eligibility: For 1 (Full Time): Valid GATE scores.

For 2: a) ME/ MTech

b) MSc in relevant branch

Application Form: Download from website.

Details: Website

Application Deadline: For 1: 09 July 2007

For 2: 30 July 2007

Scholarship

National Board for Higher Mathematics, Anushakti Bhavan, CSM Marg, Mumbai 400001 (Mah) (D/o Atomic Energy, GoI)

www.nbhm.dae.gov.in / www.nbhm.tifr.res.in

Scholarships for PG Studies in Maths (MA / MSc) 2007-2008

Eligibility: BA / BSc degree / BA / BSc final year / MA / MSc year 1 / year 2(1st Division from +2 level to present)

Age Limit: 23 years on 1 January '07.

Selection: Written Test: 22 September 2007; Interview

Scholarship: Rs. 4000/- pm for 2 years (1 year if is granted scholarship for the 2nd year) MA / MSc (Maths) from recognized institution. The scholarship can be paid through the institution they join.

Application Form: Apply on plain paper in the prescribed format. Send in duplicate with a recent passport size photograph & stamped (Rs 5/-), self-addressed envelop to the Nodal Centre. Superscribe "NBHM MA / MSc Scholarships" on envelope.

Details: Website

Application Deadline: 30 July 2007

Sciences Social

National Institute of Public Cooperation & Child Development, 5 Siri Institutional Area, Hauz Khas, New Delhi (Under M/o Women & Child Development)

http://nipccd.nic.in

Advance Diploma Course in Child Guidance & Counselling (1 year)

Eligibility: Masters degree (Social Work / Psychology / Child Development) / Bachelors Degree (Social Work / Psychology / Child Development) with 5 years work experience with children / BEd with 4 year work experience with children / sponsored candidates

Selection: Written Test: 31 July - 01 August 2007; GD; Interview.

Application Form: Download from website

Application Deadline: 20 July 2007

University

Guru Jambheshwar University, Directorate of Distance Education, Hisar 125001 (Har)

www.gju.ernet.in

1) PGDCA / MCA (1st year)

2) MSc (Computer Science) / MCA - 2nd year (Lateral Entry)

3) MCA - 3rd year (Lateral Entry)

4) MBA

5) Master of Mass Communication

6) MCom

7) MCA (5 years, Integrated Course)

8) PG Diploma in Taxation

9) PG Diploma in Environment Management

10) PG Diploma in Advertising & PR

11) PG Diploma in Bakery Science & Technology

12) Bachelor of Mass Communication

13) Bachelor of Business Administration

14) Master of Insurance Business

15) PG Diploma in Industrial Safety Mgmt

16) Bachelor of Fashion Studies

17) PG Diploma in Counselling & Behavior Modification

Application Form: Send Rs 250/- by DD favouring "Registrar, GJU, Hisar" to the above address / download from website.

Details: Website.

Application Deadline: For 1-4: 31 August 2007

For 5-17: 31 October 2007

Pervin Malhotra, Director, Career Guidance India (CARING)
(www.careerguidanceindia.com)


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