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Campus buzz: BVoc a rising option for graduation

Owing to the practicality of the curriculum, the programme has gained popularity among students, especially those who do not have the time and the means to complete graduation.

vocational studies, mumbai vocational studies, mumbai vocational studies  course, mumbai university, mumbai university courses, mumbai university vocational studies, mumbai news Six colleges under the University of Mumbai offer a BVoc programme. (Representational Photo)

In 2014, when Vishal Jambhale from Bhandup took admission into the Bachelor of Vocation (BVoc) programme at St Xavier’s College, Churchgate, he formed the first-ever batch of the programme launched by the University Grants Commission (UGC).

“I joined the programme because I didn’t have too many other options,” said Vishal, one of the seven students inducted for the software development course of the programme in 2014.

As Vishal’s batch enters the third year now, the perception towards BVoc programmes, too, has changed. “When we started with two courses in the programme — Tourism and Software development — we didn’t get enough applications. We had considered discontinuing the programme,” said Agnelo Menezes, Principal of St Xavier’s College. However, the takers for the course increased the following year. “We received about 200 applications for each of the courses last year,” he said.

St Xavier’s is one of the six colleges under the University of Mumbai (MU) offering a BVoc programme. There are two dedicated teachers for each course and the college gets a stream of visiting faculty for the students.

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Owing to the practicality of the curriculum, the programme has gained popularity among students, especially those who do not have the time and the means to complete graduation.

Even if a student decides to drop out of the three-year course after the first year, a diploma is awarded to the student. If the student leaves after the second year, an advanced diploma is awarded. Upon completion of the entire course, a degree is awarded. “More people need to know that this is a full-fledged undergraduate degree and is as valid as a Bachelor of Science and Arts degree,” said Menezes.

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Vishal, who is now busy with an internship, said he sees more future in BVoc.

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“The syllabus is more practical and focused. I am hoping for a good placement this year,” he said. The MU enrolled 354 students into its BVoc programme in six of its colleges against 680 available seats in 2015.

HR College, Churchgate and Nagindas Khandwala College, Malad, offer BVoc degrees in Retail Management and Tourism and Hospitality Management. Vikas Night College, Vikhroli, Ramniranjan Jhunjhunwala College, Ghatkopar, and Ramnarain Ruia College, Matunga, are the other colleges offering BVoc in several sectors.

“The students’ performance is evaluated by the Skill Council of India. The course gels with idea of skill development and the council acts as an ombudsman ensuring quality education,” said Menezes.

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In 2015, the School of Vocational Education of Tata Institute of Social Science (TISS), Deonar, too, had launched a BVoc programme in 20 sectors, including Electronics, Pharmaceuticals and Travel and Tourism. The programme offered by TISS is designed for the marginalised youth who want to enhance their skills for an improved livelihood, said Neela Dabir, Dean of the School of Vocational Education, TISS. The school has tie-ups with several organisations in the different sectors in which the courses are available. As part of the programme, students work five days a week and attend a theory class for a day. They are paid stipend by the organisations they work for. Most of them will

be absorbed by these organisations by the end of their course, said Dabir.

Last year, the school admitted 1,904 students in its various courses offered under the BVoc programme. Most number of students — 647 — went for the Pharmaceuticals course. BVoc Electronics was the second favourite with 634 students enrolling for the course.

First published on: 26-05-2016 at 01:31:20 am
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