Nagpur is a well-known hub of colleges for aspirants from various cities. Out of the many courses the city colleges offer to its students, the city accommodates 58 engineering colleges alone. A large part of the city population comprises of students belonging to various parts of the country. Amidst the fun season of college fests that is going on in colleges, the students are tensed about the present situation of campus recruitments. This is another crucial time for companies to conduct recruitment drives in engineering colleges. Also, this is the time many competitive exams and entrance examinations for government agencies are conducted.
The current market situation is not favourable for recent graduates and engineering students seem to have been affected the most. To know the grave situation of placements first-hand from the people who co-ordinate the placements between companies and students, Nagpur Today interacted with Training and Placement Department heads from various engineering colleges in Nagpur.
Gaurav Goyal, a professor (Electrical Department) and Departmental Co-ordinator of Training and Placement with Shri Ramdeobaba College Of Engineering and Management stressed on the importance of developing skills needed for a job rather than focusing on scoring marks. He said, “The basic education technique seems to be deteriorating today. The main concern for students is to score marks. They have a wrong perception that if they score well, they will get placed in a good company. The major recruiters in engineering colleges are IT companies and companies needing core branch students are rare. Hence even students from core branches are hired into IT companies. The perks and the greed to go abroad to work and a good salary package are apparently very attractive. Even though it’s temporary, the IT companies have reached a saturation point. Students need to improve their knowledge about other prospects and try to keep up with the competitive scenario. We have now become an autonomous college and we have imbibed certain things in our curriculum that will help our students become adaptive towards all kinds of companies and environments. It’s high time students changed their attitude and concentrated on gaining knowledge and skills rather than marks.”
Jaiprakash Paliwal, T&P Head of G.H. Raisoni College of Engineering insisted that students take up opportunities coming from the public sector as well and not concentrate on private companies only. He said, “We cannot blame the market situation and recession alone. Our students are at fault too. Where a company shortlists 150 students to participate in their aptitude test, only 10-15 students are able to qualify. The ratio has rapidly decreased. Our students need to be better prepared for aptitude and competitive tests. Not only this, our students need to see that they have very good opportunities in the public sector jobs as well. They have to realize that even government companies need good engineers too- banks and telecom companies and oil refineries and transportation, every field needs engineers. Students should prepare for GATE examination; it is an important criterion for many companies at the time of recruiting. “
Dr. Sharad Sable, Training and Placement Officer, Priyadarshini College of Engineering had a variety of solutions to the problem. He said, “In this recession in IT sectors, the engineering colleges (barring few toppers) in Maharashtra are experiencing difficulties in placing students in IT sectors. It’s a fact that the overseas IT developmental issues have always been affecting our Indian IT market in proportions. Gone are the years when deserving aspirants opted for their dream company. This year, the recession in IT industry is not persisting and the placement curve of engineering college in the Maharashtra is improving. But, such uneven situations can’t be forecasted in the beginning of the academic session. In such situations, the training and placement cell of every college gets sandwiched between less demand of IT industry and expectation by the students and management. In most colleges, it is an impression that placing students is the whole and sole responsibility of the T&P Cell though it involves multiple parameters. The placement curve or quotient of any college depends upon many factors like academics, earlier track of results, earlier track of selections, overall rank of an institution, attitude of driving management, skill sets of aspirants, branding, approach of T & P, efforts carried out, alumni support, etc. To survive in greedy and growing cut throat competition, the engineering colleges in our region are expected to enrich the set of their strengths by reducing weaknesses. “
Rozina Rana, an employability trainer in the T&P department of a city engineering college suggested ways to curb the problem of poor employment of engineers in our country. She said, “The main reason for poor employability is insufficient generation of jobs for engineers and high performance recruitments due to globalization and competition. Students have low sustainability, low commitment, less practical knowledge, less industrial exposure and poor communication skills, yet they have high expectations. The way to control these growing problems is by identifying the job opportunities, preparing students for selection process and the job and by helping them develop strong industrial linkages and rapport. Employability training would not only help in improving placements but also in building a strong and quality work force equipped to face the challenges of globalization and intense competition. This will contribute towards societal excellence.”
While the departmental heads and trainers expressed their views on this subject, Nagpur Today spoke to some engineering students who have travelled from their respective states to Nagpur in search of better prospects. Sneha Kumari, a third year student in an engineering college in Nagpur travelled from Jamshedpur, Jharkhand and made her mark in R.T.M.N.U by being a university topper for 2 consecutive semesters. She said, “Seeing the current scenario of recruitment, I am trying to be more practical. I am yet to complete my degree and I wait with a ray of hope that someday soon I will be placed in my dream company. But in this situation where reputed companies are not hiring any student, I feel depressed. Now I think I will have to opt for something completely different than what I had thought of. I hope the situation gets better and we don’t see such a huge number of unemployed youths in our country.”
Jahnabi Deka, who travelled all the way from Guwahati to Nagpur with the hope of getting a job right after her bachelor’s degree, is disappointed. The third year student said, “I came to Nagpur with a bag of clothes and lots of dreams. Like everyone, even I had dreamed of getting placed in one of the best multi-national companies of our country and go back home with a good job in my hand. our parents are spending so much on our education. We live away from home in hostels, everyday is a challenge but we do it because we hope to get a job eventually. There are so many students who are studying with loans because their parents cannot afford it. They desperately need a job and this present situation is not helping them in any way. Now it seems I will have to change my plans. Getting a job after graduation is just a distant dream and we will be lucky if we get placed after our bachelors. The probability is very low.”
In the chaos that the world is facing at the moment, feel lucky to have a job and keep it. Others, it’s time to look for new avenues and make things better rather than waiting around. This country needs time to get stable.