DESIGN FOR CHANGE VTU’s Vision 2020 emphasises university-industry interface through tech internships, in the hope that young engineering graduates will learn the skills required in a demanding and dynamic job market, says Radha Prathi
“Recall the face of the poorest and weakest man and ask yourself if the step you contemplate is going to be of any use to him.” It appears that these words of Mahatma Gandhi are being taken seriously by engineering colleges across the country. They have been re-thinking the format of the education they are imparting to their students.
A recent survey conducted by engineering colleges indicated that the number of young engineers who pursue the field in which they are trained is dwindling. An alarming number of these technical graduates do not have the requisite skills desired by the job market. Those who do make it to the industry train anywhere between six to fourteen months to arrive at desired results. This phenomenon is proving to be a dampener on the spirit of the students and a financial strain on the industries that absorb them.
What is Vision 2020?
Visvesvaraya Technological University has launched Vision 2020 and directed the engineering colleges affiliated to it to lay emphasis on university-industry interface to bring about a social change in rural areas through technological intervention.
As a result, VTU hopes that the project work undertaken by students in their finishing year will not only highlight their knowledge of the subject and talent, but also prepare them to work towards specific goals within the given deadline.
Tech for common good
Sudhin and Umanath Kamath, students who’ve just passed out of MSRIT, have invented a device which can be used in an independent navigation system for the visually impaired.
The device, when strapped on to the body, will vibrate when it detects obstacles besides offering details on topography, position, size and even the weight of the object in front of the person. The success of the device is in the fact that it is light weight, user-friendly and does not require literacy as it operates on the basis of vibrations.
SS Narendra and Sandesh, who recently graduated from MSRIT (ECE department), worked on a project at BEL, where they improvised on very high frequency military radio by interfacing the 2X5 keypad and a set of two binary code Digit switches.
They believe the experience not only offered them first-hand experience in practical work, but also introduced them to a professional and demanding work atmosphere.
Ramya Krishna M, a seventh semester student of Rajiv Gandhi Memorial College of Engineering & Technology, Nandyal (Andhra Pradesh), who is availing of the value-added course provided by her college, said: “It’s a great opportunity to understand industry requirements.”