Taking into accounting the poor employability of engineering graduates, the HRD Minister Prakash Javadekar said that all engineering students will have to undergo a minimum of three internships during their course.
These internships have been made mandatory for all engineering students from the session 2017-18. Javadekar said that all the engineering students will have to pursue three internships of duration varying from 4 to 8 weeks. These internships must be done before the completion of the graduation programme.
Speaking in Lok Sabha on Monday, July 24, 2017, the Minister added that it will be the responsibility of the institute to provide the students with suitable internships.
Apart from this, faculty members of engineering colleges will also have to take a refresher course on an annual basis. If the institute fails to ensure that the teachers are taking the refresher course, the approval of the institute may be cancelled.
Until now, only the reputed engineering colleges and technical institutes have been following the internship rule. The lack of industrial interaction has hampered the chances of securing jobs for engineering graduates.
As per the records collected in 2015-16, up to 56% of the engineering graduates remained unemployed. Javadekar said that there are a total of 10,328 AICTE-approved technical institutes comprising 15.87 lakh students. Out of these, only 6.96 lakh students were able to bag jobs through campus placements during the session 2015-16.
The Minister also added that the number of students employed could have been higher if the students had not opted to work at start-ups or chosen higher studies. Therefore, it will not be appropriate to say that more than half of the engineering graduates are unemployable, added Javadekar.
According to experts, few of the engineering graduates are considered employable due to their limited or no industrial interaction. The lack of skills required to work in the industry has been stated as the major reason behind the decline in employability rates of engineers.