In order to improve employment and make engineering students more industry-ready, the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) has made an internship programme mandatory for all students from engineering branch in core as well as service industry.
Till date, the internship programmes were not compulsory for students. However, looking at the skill gap between what is taught in the colleges and what exactly the industry requires from engineering graduates, the regulatory body of technical education in India has decided to make it mandatory for the students.
AICTE chairman SS Mantha stated in the notification that students in the fifth, sixth and seventh semesters will have to do an internship for anything from three to 24 months so that when they actually board the shop floor, they will be industry-ready.
"The AICTE is coming up with a plan to register external agencies who can liaise with industry to get internships for students so that more and more students can join the firms as interns," he stated.
AICTE has also signed a memorandum of understanding with BSNL to train third and fourth year engineering students in communication and related fields at 43 training centres across the country. The AICTE will pay for the training to the colleges, which will direct the funds to BSNL.
While talking to dna, Dr Anand Bhalerao, principal and dean of Bharati Vidyapeeth's College of Engineering said that it is really a good move and with internship getting mandatory for the students, the students will have chance to experience the professional environment and will have opportunity to attend meetings and events in the industry.
"By interacting with professionals, students will gain new connections and learn how to communicate in a professional environment," he said.
He said that internships provide the building blocks graduates need for their future. Many internship opportunities help them set the foundation for their career.
"Students should keep in mind, employers often use internships as a recruitment tool to test out future employees and in many cases, companies hire interns after graduation," he said.
He stated that according to a survey conducted by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), nearly 50 per cent of employers would like to see an internship on a student's resume. An internship can serve as a screening device for employers. Again, according to a NACE survey, nearly 36% of employers hired employees from their own internship programme.
"At Bharati Vidyapeeth, we have already made internship mandatory for the students and due to this the employability has been increased," said Dr Bhalerao.