KOCHI: Rather than waiting for the final year to hone the employability skills of students or directing them to the finishing school after that, professional and even arts and science colleges are seeking the help of private groups from the first semester itself to sharpen them. Already 15 self-financing engineering and management colleges in the state have turned to one such training firm alone for the purpose. Honing of soft skills of students is mainly targeted through the modules added outside the core curriculum. The trainers visit campuses periodically, and a few autonomous colleges are adding it as part of the curriculum.
“We have 650 institutions on roll nationwide and have trained over 1.4 million students and have a successful placement track record,” claimed Archana Ram, managing director of SMART Training Resources, who was in Kochi the other day. The modules include campus recruitment training, company specific training, English language development, technical training and career readiness credit courses for universities and autonomous colleges. “Our focus so far has predominantly been in Tier I & Tier II institutes including IITs, IIMs and NITs. Now, SMART targets Tier II & III category,” she said.
According to a NASSCOM report, each year over three million graduates and postgraduates are added to the Indian workforce. Of these, only 25 percent of technical graduates and 10-15 percent of regular graduates are considered employable. According to Dr David K. Daniel, principal of TKM Institute of Technology, Kollam, a self-financing engineering college, the training has been useful for their students.
“They train in reasoning, both qualitative and quantitative aptitude, verbal and communication skills which many students lack. They may be good on the subject, but the addition of these skills makes them more apt for employment,” he said. “Our decision to associate with SMART has been proved right by the marked improvements seen in the placements for this year. The students appreciate their focused and outcome-oriented training,” said Renooj Abdul Khader, head– HR, Universal Engineering College, Thrissur. The training firms which have a vast network of corporate houses, IT as well as core, also arrange campus recruitment....