Chennai: The fifth edition of The Hindu Education Plus Career Fair got off to a vibrant start on the Chepauk campus of Madras University with students being reassured of a reviving economy and better jobs.
Speaking at the inaugural function, M.S.Sundara Rajan, chairman and managing director, Indian Bank, said he was confident that after October, the economy would be on its feet again and the growth rate would climb back to 9 per cent per annum. The ‘pink slip’ phase was only temporary and the demand for skilled students would soon go up, he added.
In fact, even the demand for students with arts and science degrees would go up, he added. Financial institutions and IT companies had begun picking up students from these disciplines with advanced computer skills. Mr.Sundara Rajan said the bank was now even offering loans online. The career fair is being held in partnership with Madras University and sponsored by the Indian Bank over Saturday and Sunday.
Varsity Vice-Chancellor S.Ramachandran urged students to choose courses and careers that would match their interests and abilities. He laid emphasis on the employability factor, adding that the university was catering to this demand by providing soft skills training.
N.Ravi, Editor, The Hindu, said there has been a paradigm shift in the education scenario.
There is now a greater depth and variety of courses and new inter-disciplinary courses for students to choose from.
He said the fair sought to introduce parents and students to the widening world of higher education.
There had also been a change in the way higher education was funded.
While in the past, higher education cost very little for students as it was largely taken care of by the government, funding had now gone beyond the scope of the State.
In this context, financial institutions have stepped in to provide funds to students to take up higher education within the country and abroad.
Mr.Ravi added that it was important for students to acquire communications skills and to be able to work in groups.
Also, he said, there was a need to find a balance between ‘professional courses’ such as engineering, medicine, management and finance and conventional arts and science courses.