Vice President Vankaiah Naidu pitches for revamping higher education

Addressing the fourth convocation event of the National Institute of Technology Goa (NIT Goa), the Vice President of India, Venkiah Naidu emphasised the urgent need to revamp higher education in tune with contemporary requirements, according to a PIB statement.  “We cannot continue to have lakhs of engineering students graduating without basic employable skills every year and this undesirable trend has to be stopped. Our Universities need to overhaul the syllabi and the teaching methodologies to make the courses relevant to the needs of the industries”, Naidu said.  The Vice President was of the opinion that convocation is not a mere ceremonial occasion, but a milestone marking the beginning of a new chapter in the student’s life – a new chapter full of hopes, dreams and expectations of a bright and fulfilling career ahead.

“Today is the culmination of the years of hard work you had put in as a student. But remember that this is not the end of your learning as there are no full-stops to acquiring knowledge and skills. Education is a life-long process, and every experience teaches you something new. However, what is essential is to set new goals and targets and remain committed to achieving the Naidu pointed out.

Realising Dreams

As the children embark on a new and exciting journey, the Vice President asked them never look for short-cuts or quick fixes to scale new heights. Perseverance, honesty, empathy, patience and self-belief will enable you to realise your dreams. Nothing is impossible to achieve, but the path you choose has been a righteous one. Never yield to temptations for short-term or selfish gains. Always remain committed to the highest moral and ethical values, he advised.

Fastest Growing Economy

“You are all aware that India is the fastest growing economy and the GDP is expected to grow at 7.3% next year. With the improvement in the ease of doing business rankings, India has become an attractive destination for FDI, while the World Bank had stated that private investments are expected to grow by 8.8% in FY 2018-19. The IT sector continues to be a leading employer even as India remained the third largest hub for technology start-ups. With India poised to become a high middle-income country by 2030, there will be a lot of opportunities for the youth in different sectors. The need of the hour is to impart skills to the youngsters to enable them to find gainful employment or become self-employed. The Government’s ‘Skill India’ programme is a step in that direction”, Naidu said.

Challenges

“Even 71 years after attaining Independence, we are saddled with numerous challenges that have to be combated in a concerted manner by all conscientious citizens. Poverty, illiteracy, diseases, farmers’ distress and social evils like atrocities on women and weaker sections, child labour, terrorism, communalism and corruption have to be eradicated to build a New and Resurgent India, and I expect the youth of the country to be in the forefront of this noble mission” Naidu pointed out.

Collective Needs

Emphasizing the need of looking at corporate needs, Naidu said, “As engineers, it is important for you to take a closer look at the collective needs of the populace and come up with innovative, cost-effective solutions, especially in areas such as healthcare and education. I would also like the engineering professionals to assume greater responsibility in creating a safe, secure, healthy, productive and sustainable life for the countrymen. The education system lays the foundation for the all-round progress of a nation. For India to become the third largest and $ 10 trillion economy by 2030, we have to surmount many barriers and achieve faster growth. Young engineers like you need to play a play catalytic role in accelerating the wheels of progress. In the present era of globalisation, you not only have to be tech-savvy but highly motivated, competent, innovative and push the boundaries of performance. At the same time, you have to remember one important aspect– the Indian value system is based on the principles of universalism, peace and prosperity for all, or you may say, “Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam” – the whole world is one family. True education teaches the values of humility and tolerance. Value-based teaching modules aim at holistic development –  physical, psychological and moral. Knowledge of technology combined with ethics and values can ensure transparency, prevent social evils like corruption and gender discrimination. A strong and vibrant nation can be built only on the bedrock of a sustainable value system by our national ethos and human values.”

“As you are on the threshold of a new life and when you step out into the bigger world, take an oath to work for the good of the society and the country. Education is not only for employment. It is meant to empower, enlighten, widen the perspective of the students and develop them into global citizens. I would like to emphasise upon the urgent need to revamp our higher education in tune with contemporary requirements. We cannot continue to have lakhs of engineering students graduating without basic employable skills every year. This undesirable trend has to be stopped. Our Universities need to overhaul the syllabi and the teaching methodologies to make the courses relevant to the needs of the industries. I also feel that engineering students should be made to work as interns for some weeks every year to enable them to gain firsthand experience. Although our achievements have been quite impressive during the past seven decades in various fields including agriculture, industry, health, atomic energy, defence research and information technology, among others, we have miles to go. As mentioned earlier, we need to improve the quality of life of the millions of Indians, and the role of scientists and engineers is significant in overcoming various challenges”, Naidu concurred.

Image source: NIT Goa

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