Saturday, 26 July 2014

Crisis in Engineering Education

Since independence freedom fighters and politicians were rewarded for their loyalty , licences for petrol pumps, liquor and permissions to run schools where they were non existing for spread of education.Schools were started at many places on government grants and were run with missionary zeal.Over a period of time corruption started creeping in as it was in all walks of life, running schools on govt grants started becoming business and politicians of all parties and all states wanted this business to expand , so they started degree colleges in arts,commerce and science faculties.This generated a lot of business in appointments of teachers,donations from students and over statement of number of students to pocket more fees and scholarships of category candidates.The lust to make more money and to enjoy a position in society prompted the education barons to enter professional courses which were considered as very exclusive knowledge based institutions of higher learning.
By 1980s these powerful people started polytechnics , engineering colleges and medical colleges on no grants basis.These colleges had no place, infrastructure , labs,workshops , faculties.People's desire to pursue professional courses where only few meritorious students could gain entry gave the owners of these private professional colleges students in huge numbers and money in tonnes.These institutions mushroomed in all nooks and corners  of the country and flourished despite no facilities under the patronage of political parties.
Govt land was made available to them at throwaway or no cost.Banks extended loans on soft terms to build infrastructure.The hardware like buildings and some labs and workshops were created to impress upon the market ie the potential students but the software i.e. faculties to teach was missing.The managements of these colleges could not nurture good faculties over the period and managed the teaching work with the help of inexperienced low cost faculties.
As a result , the students passing out of these colleges do not have any subject knowledge, they pass the downgraded university exams by all means and get a degree which has very little value in professional world.The teachers do not have any industry exposure in terms of research projects association with the Industry, the students are not encouraged to do industrial training,are not even taken for industrial visits.At the end of four year program the student has not seen an industry related to his branch.
The end result is that we are churning out sub standard engg graduates who have no future and the colleges are least bothered about it.The colleges feel that they should only provide teaching for university curriculum , the students pass the exams and the college's role end there.
As a awakened society are we doing justice to the children as parents, teachers,colleges owners,university officials,technical education dept officials, ministers and all of us.Thousands of lives are in jeopardy.Somebody has to bell the cat.....

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