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MHRD for academia-industry collaborations

MHRD for academia-industry collaborations
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Observing that students graduating from universities are not 'industry-ready', Union HRD Minister Pallamraju on Monday emphasised the need for a...

mhrdObserving that students graduating from universities are not "industry-ready", Union HRD Minister Pallamraju on Monday emphasised the need for a curriculum change and increased academia-industry collaborations. "We are seeing that the students who are coming out (of universities and colleges) are not necessarily industry ready and the industry is spending a lot of resources in re-training them to be industry ready," Pallamraju said. He was talking to reporters after inaugurating 'International Workshop on Industry-Academia Collaboration for Greater National Productivity' organised by the HRD Ministry, All India Council of Technical Education and CII. He said the conference will focus on increasing employability of university students.A "One objective of the seminar is how do we pick up curriculum and how do we give the students adequate exposure while they are in the campus itself so that they are industry ready...So that our students are more employable not only for the industry, but globally, and they would be competitive," he said. The Minister said the government is trying to build strong academia-industry linkages. "We are trying to establish a strong mechanism whereby these linkages are strengthened and academic institutions benefit through participation of industries in campus. In parallel, industry can benefit from the outcome of the research and development that happen on campuses and research establishments," he said. Pallamraju also emphasised the role of industry in upgrading the curriculum. "There is also a need for creating capacity for research, skilling and upgrading our curriculum. This hand-holding has to come from the industry in guiding the academic institutions in strengthening the curriculum and other facilities." He also asked the academia and industry to work on a strong research base in the country and to choose areas of research and development activities. "Can we have joint project proposals from a consortium of academia and industry in next 30 days for the government to provide all round support in some select areas," he said. Pallamraju compared the present situation in India with China in terms of research. "During 2002 to 2007, the number of PhDs in India has grown from around 12,000 to 20,000 per year, whereas in China the numbers have grown from 15,000 to 40,000. Indian share of world researches during the same time has grown from 2.2 per cent to 2.3 per cent, whereas China's share has grown from 14 per cent to 20 per cent," he said. India's contribution to world publications from 2002 to 2007 has grown from 25,000 to 40,000, while China's contribution has grown 60,000 to 1,90,000, he said. "As a result, India's gross expenditure in research and development is less than one per cent of the GDP, whereas China spends more than one per cent and Israel spends 4.5 per cent of GDP in R&D," he said. Replying to a question on implementation of Right to Education Act, Pallamraju expressed hope that the states will implement it more seriously. State governments were given a deadline till December 31 to implement the Act. "I am hoping that since the deadline has ended, the states will be tough on the schools that are not complying, because we are also creating capacities in schools that are complying more," he said. To fill the shortage of teachers in universities, he said steps are being taken by the UGC and institutions to fill the vacancies.
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