Andhra Pradesh

It may take one extra year to graduate for A.P. students

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A year-long compulsory apprenticeship to be added in curriculum

Students in the State may have to spend an additional year on their college campuses from the next academic year to acquire hands-on experience during a year-long apprenticeship period proposed to be integrated in their academic curriculum, according to sources in the government.

The new system will mandate students, not just from B. Tech courses but also non-technical courses, to undergo a year-long apprenticeship period when they are still on the campus. This is because unemployability of educated youth is a bigger problem than unemployment in the State and the need to make them industry-ready is felt more than ever before.

Industry-ready

The idea is to equip students with both skillsets and hands-on experience before stepping out of their college. A degree in non-technical course will henceforth will be for four years and for B.Tech students, it will be five years.

After completion of the main curriculum, the college will impart basic training for three to nine months before sending the student to an empanelled industrial unit for hands-on experience.

The proposal was discussed threadbare at a review meeting the Chief Minister Jagan Mohan Reddy held with the officials of the Andhra Pradesh State Council of Higher Education (APSCHE), Department of Technical Education and the Skill Development Corporation, which had been imparting training on students through different modules integrated in their respective courses.

From next academic year

Mr. Jagan referred to the National Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme (NAPS), rolled out by the Centre, which envisages basic training and on-the-job training at workplace in the industry, and asked the APSCHE to draw a plan for its implementation from the next academic year in the State.

To fulfil his promise of allocating 75% quota for local youth in jobs, the Chief Minister is convinced that the apprenticeship scheme will create skilled manpower in the State. Moreover, the NAPS presents a win-win situation. To achieve its target, the Centre has incentivised employers employing apprentices and firms are said to have expressed willingness to absorb the apprentices for their own benefit. In the existing system, many companies complain of high attrition rate as the recruits tend to leave immediately after acquiring the training given to them at the cost of the employer’s time and resources.

An official of the APSCHE said the government would make a formal announcement of the scheme after the Assembly session. Gujarat is effectively implementing the apprenticeship scheme.

Doubts

But doubts are being raised on the efficacy of the scheme, since it would mean one extra precious year for a student. There are fears that to avoid spending one more year on the campus, many students may move out of State for higher education.

“Gujarat is a hub of industries and this scheme may help the local students there. Where are the industries in AP? The government should first focus on setting up industries and then think of job quota,” said Karra Sriram, a B.Tech final year student.

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Printable version | Dec 7, 2019 8:07:28 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/it-may-take-one-extra-year-to-graduate-for-ap-students/article30125512.ece

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