Technical Integration in Mainstream : Dilip Chenoy, National Skill Development Corporation

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As the CEO and Managing Director of National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC), Dilip Chenoy strongly believes that the organisation presents an enormous opportunity to transform the skill landscape of India and impact the livelihood of millions of people. Just four months into the organisation he is working towards delivering the core value that NSDC was set up for. In an interaction with Yukti Pahwa, he touched upon he various aspects of skill development in India

NSDC has an equity base of INR 10 crore. Kindly elaborate on the amount that has already been invested so far and the progress made.

The National Skill Development Corporation (NSDC) has funded 3 proposals, entailing a total monetary requirement of INR 45.38 crore. Combined, these three projects seek to skill more than 1 million youth over a 10-year period. The funded projects would impart training in the gems and jewelery sector, automobiles, welding and retail, apart from introducing courses for electricians and machinists. Further, NSDC has also approved the funding of 5 projects, which include funds for the formation of the Automotive Skill Development Council on a pilot basis.

Technical education is an alternate to mainstream education. What is your opinion about the same?

The view that technical education is an alternate to mainstream education perhaps needs to change to the view that the technical steam is an integral part of education and key to the competitiveness of the future. An increased focus on technical education is essential for the country to ensure that its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) continues to grow at upwards of 8-9%.

A study conducted by management consulting firm IMaCS (an ICRA subsidiary) on behalf of NSDC has projected that there could be a potential shortage of 240-250 million people in 21 critical sectors of the economy by 2022. Industry has to lead in ensuring that this gap is bridged and the NSDC is the vehicle to enable that. 

Kindly highlight any recent noticeable happenings in the sector of Skill Development sector.

Skills development has been accorded top priority by the Government. The Government’s vision is to train 500 million youth by 2022 in 21 sectors which it has identified as focus segments. Already, 17 ministries are engaged in the task of training and skill development initiatives. The Government has moreover set up the NSDC in collaboration with the private sector to catalyse private sector involvement for meeting its goal. The NSDC’s mandate is to help train at least 150 million of the 500 million people by 2022 by incubating skills development initiatives of both for profit and not for profit organisations by providing funds for this purpose. As stated earlier, the 3 projects that have already been funded by NSDC have the potential to train over 1 million youth over the next 10 years. A significant emerging trend is that skill development and training is being viewed as a sustainable business and many corporations and individuals are looking to start new ventures.

Do you think skill development and vocational training should be formally integrated as part of Higher Education?

The entire education framework needs to provide for lifelong learning and also mobility from one stream to another for those who wish to do so. Currently this is only possible in selective areas and in a limited manner. There are global examples where this framework has been achieved and it would soon be so in India as well. In addition, skill development has to be integrated into the career path of every individual and industry has to build in systems and procedures to do this.

Do you see any role of ICT in propagating skill education and vocational training?

ICT can play a huge role in propagating skills training nationwide and helping in the process of promoting inclusive growth. In order to be able to achieve scale in skill development to meet the ambitious goals set by the PM’s Council, use of IT is imperative. NSDC has identified those skills that can be taught through E-learning, new products would be required for teaching, IT would be increasingly used for certification and assessment and IT as a skill could transform rural India to the back office for Urban India!   


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