The central government’s ‘Skill India’ programme is finding place in Mumbai colleges. Be it collaboration with foreign universities for certificate programmes or full-fledged degree courses from the University of Mumbai, skill-based training courses are receiving a positive response from students.
UPG College, Vile Parle, is collaborating with Ohio University (OU), US, and has for the first time introduced a six-month certificate programme in sports management.
“Virtual lectures are being conducted by professors from OU, as well as our own staff, and students are learning much more than what the books can offer,” said principal Anju Kapoor.
For its first batch, the college had put together a class of 30-odd students and lectures are conducted in the evening to bridge the time difference as lectures at OU are conducted early in the morning.
“Students are happy to stay in college after regular hours to attend these special lectures,” said Kapoor, adding that the first batch finished its quota of lectures this month.
Expressing concern over a number of engineering and other professional course students going jobless despite a degree, the University Grants Commission (UGC) in May 2016 announced the need for skill-based training to students in colleges and universities across the country to improve their employability.
University of Mumbai (MU) in 2014 introduced a bachelor’s degree in vocational education (BVoc) which gave students the option to study for two years, work in the industry for a year and come back to college to finish their degrees. As of now, several colleges affiliated with MU are offering BVoc programmes to students.
At Jai Hind College, the management introduced BVoc in travel and tourism for their students, and has collaborated with other universities as well as government bodies for the program.
“We have collaborated with Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation Ltd (MTDC) for lectures as well as with a Japanese university. Students have been getting good exposure and are also being offered internship by various companies,” said principal Ashok Wadia.
With the recently acquired autonomous status, the management of Nagindas Khandwala College in Malad has decided to make certificate programs in skill-based training compulsory for students by attaching extra credits for every course that a student opts for.
“Our aim is to enhance practical skills of our students so we have decided to make eight additional credits compulsory for students, which they have to earn over and above the other 120 credits. This will help students a lot in the future,” said college principal Ancy Jose.