Community work should be made compulsory

The concept of experiential learning is learning by an act of service that is also beyond one's area of study.

Hyderabad: The training provided by universities to students comes to a standstill when it comes to community work. Students abroad are often sent on relief missions and asked to work for communities struck by natural disaster. However, in higher educational institutions in India, only NSS and NCC students do volunteer work on a regular basis.

Educational experts feel that unless making community service a compulsory part of the curriculum, the current educational system cannot create enabled citizens.

The concept of “experiential learning” is learning by an act of service that is also beyond one’s area of study. “There are very few educational institutions in India that have made community work mandatory. I have been fortunate enough to teach in two institutions where students were asked to do community work one summer and also asked to stay in remote areas to try and figure out innovative projects for their problems. Many students told me what a wonderful experience it was,” says Dheeraj Sanghi, a faculty member of IIT-Kanpur.

Educational experts feel that with this exposure, students learn much more than what they are expected to in a classroom and their knowledge increases with interaction with people from different walks of life.

“Learning from experience is definitely the path to the future. Students will be more well versed in various topics and should be encouraged to read beyond their fields of study and gain expertise in it rather than limiting oneself,” says S. Muralidhar, a career counsellor.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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