In line with the industries’ requirement, educational institutes in Madhya Pradesh are imparting skill-based higher education. How the education sector in the State is handling various challenges and imparting quality education Dr Upinder Dhar, Vice Chancellor, Shri Vaishnav Vidyapeeth Vishwavidyalaya, Indore.
The availability of job-oriented quality education ensures an increase in the working capability, productivity and employability of the students. Madhya Pradesh is one of the fastest growing states in the country with a growth rate of more than 10 percent. To sustain and enhance the present growth rate, it is necessary that available human resource is technically trained as per demand in the global market. It is well known that the role of trained, skilled and productive human resource in technical sector is paramount for overall economic development.
Need for Integrated Development
The State Government has played the key role in ensuring the availability of ever-increasing demand for skilled human resource in the state and the country. As a result of this, it has been made possible to set up around 1,350 Technical Training Institutes with an intake capacity of about 2,59,000, and the State has emerged as an important educational hub in the technical education and vocational training. The offerings of various types of institutions include programmes in engineering, architecture, computer applications, business administration, pharmacy, polytechnic, hotel management, catering technology, industrial training and skill development.
In recent years, the development of technical and vocational education took place at a fast pace. However, as per available data, the State is still behind the national average of available seats per lakh population in any discipline. As per data of the Ministry of Labour, the State stands at 11th position in the country on the total number of seats available in the government and private ITIs.
The short-term training programmes are in great demand in the State. Currently, there are only 135 skill development and vocational training centres offering short-term programmes. This has also been repeatedly emphasised by the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) and All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) to take action on imparting good quality technical and vocational education in the State. It will help the youth of Madhya Pradesh to grab the opportunities arising on account of economic development.
In the opinion of several national level industrial organisations, the human resource currently being trained by the technical educational institutions is not as per the demand of the market and industry, and the quality is also not of expected level. There are still several trades for which there is a high demand for skilled human resource, however, neither the institutions have the vision and required capacity to train as per demand nor the programs available are as per requirement.
Although there has been a sharp increase in the technical educational institutions offering graduate and postgraduate programs in the State, the number of institutions and programmes, availability of seats and intake capacity at the Polytechnic and ITI level has not increased in the same proportion. Thus, there is a need for a policy that promotes a balanced and integrated development of technical education at various levels.
Challenges and Solutions
The challenges and solutions in the current scenario appear to be:
- To develop Madhya Pradesh as a better option for technical education and skill training
- To provide better training opportunities for technical education and skill development as per demand of the industry
- To make efforts to raise the quality of technical education at par with the global standard
- To provide training opportunities along with appropriate employment to every needful youth
- To invite institutions and universities of national as well as international repute to establish centres in Madhya Pradesh
- To forecast need for technically trained human resource on regular intervals based on skill mapping and skill gap analysis
- Start new programmes as well as revise existing ones to bridge the gap
- To develop certification mechanism for the informally trained people
- To expand training facilities through an alternative framework with the inclusion of private education and training providers
- To provide programmes in digital format for distance education and online system of education.
Tours should be conducted for the students of senior secondary schools to technical education institutions with the objective of enhancing their awareness and interest in technical programs so that more students are motivated to work in the field based on technical skills without any gender bias. State and district-level guidance-cum-employment fairs should also be organised for the promotion of technical education.
The state should also ensure a transparent and fast system through the use of information technology, and encourage the institutions to obtain accreditation as per national and international standards. Further, the state should encourage greater private participation and innovation in the management of government institutions. (Views expressed are a personal opinion)