The Karnataka State Open University, which has more than 3 lakh students, is reaching out to those from deprived sections of society aspiring to take up competitive examinations through its Competitive Examination Training Centre.

The centre was established on September 1, 2011. Since then thirteen training programmes have been held.

Training sessions have been held for those appearing for UGC-NET, K-SLET, KAS and IAS examinations. The centre has also held spoken English classes. At present, training is being imparted to gram panchayat accounts assistants.

Of the 2,285 candidates who have undergone training at the centre till date, 773 belong to the SC category and 312 to the ST category, Coordinating Officer of the centre Jainahalli Satyanarayana Gowda told The Hindu.

Of the 136 candidates who underwent training for K-SLET, 35 passed the test in September 2011. And, 10 out of the 39 candidates who underwent training for UGC-NET passed. Of the 58 candidates who were the second batch of UGC-NET trainees, 23 passed the test in May 2012.

The centre has trained 668 candidates who appeared for the examination held for appointment of high school teachers in May/June 2012. Of the total number, 235 candidates belonged to the SC and 90 to ST.

The main objective of the Competitive Examination Training Centre is to impart training to candidates from rural areas so that they can clear the competitive examinations that will pave the way for their better future. “The centre is the brainchild of the KSOU Vice-Chancellor K.S. Rangappa”, Mr. Gowda said. The centre collected Rs. 300 as material costs from each candidate but the training for various competitive examinations was imparted for free.

Professors from the University of Mysore, KSOU, and experts from the Abdul Nazeer Saab-State Institute of Rural Development have been engaged as resource persons by the centre.