In recent times, general awareness about the education sector has increased phenomenally in society. In the last couple of years, the central and state governments have progressively changed their approach and focus towards education. Most importantly, today, academia is more accepting of the fact that the ultimate goal of an educational course is to enhance the employability quotient of a student. Accordingly, new branches, courses, and programmes have been developed pertaining to Artificial Intelligence (AI), Data Analytics, Robotics, IoT, etc.
As the acceptability of these new programmes increases progressively, the traditional courses like BA, B.Com, BSc., Engineering, etc. are losing their sheen. There is a hunger in the new generation of students to gain more and more knowledge that can be utilised to generate income either by becoming an entrepreneur and finding a startup or join a company as an employee. The concept of an educational degree or diploma being a status symbol is becoming obscure and losing importance gradually.
The pandemic has created a major disruption in the education sector pertaining to the acceptability of online courses. Today, the age-old traditional classroom education system is being replaced by online education, right from Junior KG to PG, be it technical or non-technical disciplines. Several new technological concepts have also emerged that make online education equally effective.
Technology plays a major role in the post-pandemic world order. For many courses, even the practicals are held online. One of the major advantages of online education is that students can learn from an expert faculty who have superlative teaching ability and skills. Students no longer need to depend on a fixed select group of teachers who might have limited teaching skills despite having very good subject knowledge.
A significant part of our future plans is developing and establishing the concept of Learn and Earn across India which is built upon Germany’s Duel Education System. The Learn and Earn programme will be available across sectors, where the students will be expected to work for 8 hours and learn for 2 hours every day through online classroom training sessions. For technical disciplines, practical classes will be planned on weekly off-days at nearby Polytechnic, or Engineering colleges.
Students participating in the programme will need to take exams every semester which will be conducted by University/ respective Government approved board. There will be an option of taking the exams before or after the working hours, either in the morning or evening so that the students’ employment is not hindered in any way. The respective industry where the student will be getting the “On The Job Training” (OJT) will pay a stipend which will not be less than minimum wages for that particular trade/state.
Additionally, we will provide insurance coverage for the safety of the students. The students shall not be required to bear the cost of the education and other related expenses. Students would not be paying any fees or give any financial contribution for participating in the Learn and Earn programme. These programmes are not restricted to the manufacturing or technical domains and will be available in multiple sectors such as Pharma, Banking, Retail, Hospitality, Food Processing, Logistics, etc. Also, the initiative can be implemented in the Management sector where the focus is more on actually working knowledge and the concept of ‘Learning by Doing’ is better accepted.
We plan to get the Learn and Earn programmes to be covered under the CSR wing of the organisations which will motivate more industries and organisations to participate and implement them. This programme is a great example of a win-win situation where the businesses, the students and the society, in general, are all simultaneously benefitted. The programme will give students from modest socio-economic backgrounds to get an excellent chance to enhance their earning capability and receive formal education at the same time. Such educational programmes will increase the ratio GER and can be a role model for the New Education Policy announced by Government.