Union HRD Minister Prakash Javdekar on Monday said that the government is planning professional bachelors courses that will make graduates immediately employable.
“We are conceptualising professional BA, B.Com and B.Sc courses in which we will give a choice to students to take 1,000 extra hours of courseware along with their regular courses,” he said. Javdekar said that the courseware will include 250 hours each of soft skills and computer skills and 500 hours of one or two course-specific skills.
“These will enhance students’ preparedness for jobs because we find millions of job opportunities waiting for the right person. On the other hand, we have millions of educated unemployed students. It is a perfect case of a mismatch. Those students who pick up skills will get immediate job placements. That is the need of the hour,” he said. Javdekar added that new courses are part of the government’s efforts to equip graduates with skills required by industries.
Javdekar spoke via video conference at “Skill India – The Way Forward In Higher Education”, a three-day seminar, which began at the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) on Monday.
The opening session was attended by state Finance Minister Sudhir Mungantiwar, state Skills Development and Entrepreneurship Minister, Sambhaji Patil Nilangekar, MP Kirit Somaiya and Anil Sahasrabudhe, Chairman, All India Council for Technical Education, among others.
Rajesh Agrawal, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, said that the central government is also working on a program to ensure that all graduates can secure industry apprenticeships during summer vacations in the duration of their courses.
“During these apprenticeships, students will align skill with demand. As a result, recruitment will become skilled and and employment will improve because the employer will be able to observe the student and not ask for a skill certificate,” he said.
Aseem Gupta, Secretary, Skill Development and Entrepreneurship department, Maharashtra, said that the state government is also working on proposals to develop separate forest skills and cyber skills universities. “We have also mandated all universities in the state to include skill development in courses so that students do not need to spend an extra year after graduating to learn a skill,” he said.