If you are a student on the cusp of a career, how do you sift through the multitude of options to decide what is right for you? What will make you employable and keep you relevant?

At the inauguration of The Hindu Education Plus Career Counselling 2014 on Friday, the focus was on the challenges facing higher education in the country and the skill sets and qualities required to succeed in the rapidly-transforming world economy.

A meeting point for students and institutions, the fair has stalls set up by educational institutions, as well as seminars by eminent speakers on opportunities in fields ranging from engineering to sports management.

The second day of the fair will see speakers such as Uma Vangal Shivakumar from L.V. Prasad Film and TV Academy, S. Vaidhyasubramaniam from SASTRA University, and Gokul Visweswaran from NFN Labs speak on film studies and cinema, engineering counselling, and mobile application development and entrepreneurship. Bodhi will also conduct psychometric tests.

Speaking about the gap between the number of graduates and jobs available in the economy, T.V. Mohandas Pai, Chairman, Manipal Global Education Services, said that in the coming years, students will graduate into a very crowded market. “The qualities that you need to succeed in this new world are very different,” he said.

Considering the proliferation of technology, and transition of economic power from Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development countries and the developing west to the developing east led by Asia, especially India and China, students should look at themselves as global citizens, he said.

N. Ram, Chairman, Kasturi and Sons Ltd., and G. Viswanathan, Chancellor, VIT University, outlined the challenges facing higher education. Building a knowledge economy, said Mr. Viswanathan, was not possible without quality higher education. “We have to offer good education starting at the school level,” he said. The problem, he said, lay in education governance in the country.

The second edition of ‘Nxt Step’, The Hindu Education Plus’ career handbook was also launched on Friday. VIT University is the presenting sponsor. The fair will be on till 5 p.m. on Saturday at the Chennai Trade Centre in Nandambakkam.