Around 66% of seats in Maharashtra’s engineering colleges lie vacant, according to a survey by research and ratings agency CRISIL released earlier this month. Across the country, 67% of seats lie vacant though the number of seats has gone up from 5.5 lakhs in 2006-07 to 14.85 lakhs in 2011-12.
CRISIL looked at more than 100 colleges across the country over a three-month period from August to December last year. “Many of these colleges have not been able to invest in faculty, have very few industry link-ups and inadequate placements,” said Ajay Srinivasan, head of industry research at CRISIL.
Last year, after admissions to engineering colleges ended, more than 18,000 seats were left vacant in Maharashtra. Also, 12,000 new seats at state engineering colleges were approved last year. “There is a big demand for engineering but only for certain colleges and certain courses,” said MC Deo, director of Veermata Jijabai Technological Institute in Matunga. “Certain courses have very low market value, while some institutes are located in remote parts with fewer facilities.”
It’s a similar story with the occupancy rates at business schools. The national average for occupancy at business schools stands at 65% though seats have increased, from 0.94 lakhs in 2006-07 to 3.52 lakhs in 2011-2012, said the report.
The survey found full occupancy at top B-schools such as the Indian Institutes of Management. However, tier-four B-schools that account for the maximum number of seats at 36% have half their seats vacant.
“Everyone profession has a life cycle and the honeymoon period for the MBA is very much over. There used to be a rush, a lot of B-schools mushroomed without a focus on quality, the faculty were poor and the students were unemployable once they started graduating,” said Rekha Sethi, director general of the All India Management Association.