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TISS to train students in soft skills to boost employability

Currently 1,000 students are enrolled in the programme and 200 third year students have already got jobs.

Written by Mihika Basu | Mumbai |
July 19, 2014 3:18:33 am

With soft-skills becoming a key in landing good placements, the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) is facilitating a programme to train first-year undergraduate students across 11 universities in industry and job-related skills. These educational institutes include Mumbai University and Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Marathwada University, Aurangabad from Maharashtra. The programme has been initiated by the Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports.

In the first year, students will undergo a foundation course in english and communication, digital literacy, financial and legal literacy, youth leadership and soft skills. They will also work with communities, leading to a field practical.

Currently 1,000 students are enrolled in the programme and 200 third year students have already got jobs. In June, for instance, a placement process was conducted for students of Mumbai’s Sree Narayana Guru College of Commerce, Chembur, that mostly caters to poor children from slum areas of M-East ward and 63 were placed in financial, retail and hospitality sectors.

Students are engaged for three years through a multi-stakeholder collaborative model, involving universities, corporates, NGOs, in addition to a graduation degree. While students get a certificate at the end of the first year in soft skills and management, and a certificate in the second year in vocational skills, they get a diploma in vocational skills at the end of the third year.

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“Only 20 per cent of the graduates in our country are considered employable by the industry. A NASSCOM report says that each year, over three million graduates and post-graduates are added to the Indian workforce. Hence, there is an urgent need for skill development, self employment and creation of entrepreneurs. Our target is to train 50,500 students over a period of three years,” said TISS director S Parasuraman.

There are 20 credits for the foundation course, which is followed by a 26-credit course in the second year on domain skills.

Students can choose from a range of courses, which includes entrepreneurship in agriculture, forestry and related sectors, construction management, financial management, water, sanitation and health (entrepreneurship in sanitation services), hospitality and tourism management, healthcare and micro insurance in healthcare or dialysis training, fashion designing, livelihoods and entrepreneurship development and community development and local governance.

More courses are being developed. All domain areas have employment, entrepreneurship and livelihood modules. While TISS has invested Rs 2.5 crore through internal borrowing, the budgeted pilot project cost is Rs 65 crore.

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