A tale of Indian engineering students

With the semester exams around the corner there’s a tension of studying and performing well in the exams on almost every engineer’s face across in India. I don’t wish to debate on which course is tough. I feel that being a medical student is definitely not easy.But then the general excuse is,the cream layer generally aspires to become doctor. The hot topic for engineering students across India is generally jobs and placements. Then there are some who aspire to do post-graduation in foreign universities. Some want to do MBA or M.Tech.Then there are some students with backlogs and suffering from exam-phobia. Then there are some,low on academics,high on morale,but absolutely clueless about their future life. It’s the last category that forms a major lot of the Indian engineering students.

The random surveys of engineering students and their employability

This category is profoundly found even in our so called ‘highly reputed institutes of India.’ Ministry of HRD has to conduct a detailed survey across all these premium institutes of India to exactly understand what happens to an Indian engineering student,who used to be a topper in his high school,cleared a national-level examination to enter into a reputed institute. These students who perform well at national level,sometimes end up regretting their decision to take up engineering as their career. This is where they feel that the premier MBA institutes will come to their rescue. Then some of them are lucky enough to end up in these institutes. Then the media complains about high number of engineers ending up in IIMs and other premier MBA institutes. Everything has a reason behind it. No one complains when an IIT-D graduate becomes the governor of RBI, no one complains when one IIT-Kharagpur graduate establishes a political party which aims to change the political system in India. IIT-B,BITS-Pilani graduates are becoming chief ministers in India. The outlook of Indian society towards engineering students have to change. I have heard many engineering students talking that why are we wasting government’s money by taking up IIMs. But then engineers from reputed institutes who have all the right qualifications to be employed on a good pay-scale,end up either unemployed or under-employed. Is it justified for the so-called cream layer of India’s young generation to be unemployed. It is this sorry state of the system that some engineering branches end up with high pay-scale jobs while some branches that are equally important for the economy end up under-employed. Then we should not complain about the fact that engineering students aspiring for MBA or planning to go abroad for their post-graduation. On one hand we rue the fact that Indian industries lack skilled workers and professionals and on other hand qualified engineers remain unemployed or under-employed. One random survey says 85 % of Indian engineers are not qualified enough and everybody starts criticizing the education system. No one ever talks about at least giving a chance to these youngsters to show their mettle. No one’s born qualified enough,everybody learns through their experiences. It’s certainly not entirely society’s responsibility but then the mindset that engineering students are not serious enough is again not entirely true. Young engineers want to serve the society but their hunger is not satisfied. Everybody has a right to dream and when the aims and objectives of a person are not satisfied, he is bound to search for an opportunity somewhere else, something out of his domain to hope that he would be satisfied. No one should complain about the brain-drain, if we do not improve the facilities here. Not everybody gets inspired by watching ‘Swades’. Deep down every human thinks about oneself and the family. The facilities and opportunities,here in India has to be improved. Otherwise, even I have seen, bright students from premier institutes of the country aspiring for a U.S. degree and serving the Fortune 500 U.S. companies. The reason is simple,they believe their needs will be rightly addressed in that nation. One fine day, a newspaper comes up with a news that some Indo-American becoming a Nobel laureate or a mayor of some city. We all talk about what if even half of the Indian scientists in NASA come back to India. Why would they? There needs are satisfied there quite well!

These youngsters should be encouraged to stay in the country. For that,the job opportunities have to be sufficient and satisfactory. Government of India has initiated many new schemes to encourage the engineers to do post-graduation in the premier institutes across India. But then again,the need has to be satisfied. I hope someday all these ministry portfolios will be rightly occupied by the people who know what it is. A steel minister will be a metallurgist or an industrialist, a sports minister will be a former sportsman, a law minister will be a lawyer, home minister an I.P.S officer. We all hope for the betterment of this country,but then again the steps have to be taken in right direction. The government,the industries and the educational institutes all have to come together to develop the nation. As they rightly say,’ Rome was not built in a day.’ MAKTUB.