In the offing, 2 vocational BSc courses

Two new BSc courses to brighten job prospects of students who pass HSC vocational courses will soon be available in colleges.

BSc (vocational) and BSc (Industrial Science) have been designed by Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University (YMCOU). "Vertical mobility for students is a big problem. Another problem is that conventional BSc courses are not designed to enhance vocational skills. Last year we designed a BSc vocational course keeping in mind needs of students particularly job prospects. But it was stuck during the implementation process," said Jayant Bhabhe, vice-president of the Maharashtra State Junior College Vocational Education Employee Association.

As per a study by Symbiosis Open Education Society in 2010-11, high-growth sector related vocational courses are not being widely offered in India. There has been a decline in jobs which require lower educational qualifications. There are four million trained and skilled persons required in high-growth sectors in Maharashtra alone by 2012, of which minimally skilled people required are 1.1 million. The study shows that engineering and science students are good in designing but when it comes to the services sector, the industry requires skilled workforce. "This is where BSc vocational courses come into play. The industries no longer require illiterate work force. What they want is someone who understands basic theories and is efficient in servicing faulty machinery," said Bhabhe.

But whether these courses will be taken up by colleges is yet to be seen. Dr R S Tiwari, Director, School of Computer Science, YMCOU said, "When we tried to introduce BSc vocational courses last year, we received a poor response from colleges. Another reason the course was not introduced was lack of its promotion among colleges. But this time, we are not taking any chances. Promotion will start next month. We also have a good response from industries regarding the course," he said. "The BSc in Industrial Science will be launched with specialisation in manufacturing stream. Later two more streams will be introduced." Tiwari added.

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