Title of the Practice: Skilling the New Generation (Skilling for Resilience)
In an era of globalisation, digitalisation and in the face of an ever-increasing army of educated unemployed, building a career without possessing specific skills, be it technical, soft or life skills seems to have become next to impossible. In the present context, skill development has therefore, become an important pillar of growth in the significant transition of a generation. Today, a competency enhancement approach turns out to be the need of the hour to create ‘resilient’ human resource which is adaptable to the changing scenario of global employment trends. It is relevant not only for the growth of a nation in the broader context but also for channelizing the potentiality of the students in an appropriate way. Thus, the cardinal focus of Sonapur College, in compliance to its mission and vision commitments, is to put special emphasis on developing such skill and resilience in students, to cope with future challenges, and survive.
OBJECTIVE OF THE PRACTICE
A zealous commitment to its cherished mission, worrying scenario of mass unemployment inspite of prevalence of myriads of explored and unexplored areas of job opportunities, has prompted Sonapur College to take up various skill enhancement initiatives for the students. Sonapur College sincerely believes that the confidence and competency building of the students while introducing them to job opportunities and challenging responsibilities in the upcoming sectors are the key towards building a strong human resource.
Sonapur College has maintained a long run practice of developing skills among the students within and beyond the framework of course curriculum. The necessity of it was felt more because of its location in a rural setting, due to which the students of the locality need to be specially groomed to enable them to cope with their counterparts from the cities with all facilities. At the same time, the endeavour of the college is to act as a platform for the students belonging to the rural milieu to hone their latent talents.
Besides offering three Bachelor of Vocational courses (B.Voc) in Retail Management & IT, Tourism & Travel Management and Theatre and Stagecraft, the college is also currently offering Certificate Courses on Yoga, Spoken English and Computer Basics. The B.Voc courses are funded by UGC and follow the curriculum of Gauhati University aligned to National Skill Development Council (NSDC).
Moreover, there are a number of practices in the college which essentially provide the much-required boost to its skill enhancements initiatives. The college believes that the latent talents of the students which they express unconsciously gives a window to understanding their qualities. The forte of the students which can be further groomed to develop them into individual blocks of a confident and resilient work force, the college adopts an unconventional approach towards skill enhancement by incorporating technical, soft and life skills. The salient features of such practices are –
Speaking and writing skill:
Special training and competitions are regularly arranged for enhancement of speaking and writing skill. These competitions play an important role in identifying students interested in public speaking so that specialised sessions can be held for them.
Beauty and Wellness:
The girl students are given an opportunity to develop their skills in beauty and wellness not only for self-application but also to build their career. The college holds short term courses on Beauty and Wellness. It also provides them with a platform for competitions of Fashion and Beauty Pageants. These help them in identifying related career options.
Sona Harvest is a specially designed sales outlet where the students can make, display and sell their hand made artefacts, mostly traditional handicrafts and household agro-products. This outlet is designed to develop an entrepreneurial mindset amongst the students.
The Peer teaching by the UG students in the feeder schools and by PG students in the UG Classes helps in building their teaching skills and confidence while making them realize their role in society building.
Managerial Skill and Leadership:
The students are provided with the opportunity to manage the events in the college like College Week, Freshers’ Social, Saraswati Puja, NE India Inter-College Debate Competition, Gauhati University Youth Festival etc. In these events, the responsibility right from venue arrangements, conducting the meetings, VIP reception, catering etc. is entrusted to the students.
On job trainings:
The OJT’s in different companies/ business houses by the students of B. Vocational Courses enables them to enhance competencies for different jobs and entrepreneurial ventures.
Skill of traditional handicrafts:
Being an institute located in a rural area with predominantly tribal people, traditional craft is the most familiar practice. The college provides a platform to the students by organising workshops, competitions etc. for their qualitative enhancement and exposure for commercial venture.
Regular theatre workshops and production of plays give an outlet to the skills of the students interested in theatre and allied fields. The students are also given various assignments from the college authority to make and edit college videos for use by the college authority.
Life Skill Workshops:
Building resilient community being the focus of Sonapur College, various motivational workshops that focus on self-focus, communication, critical thinking, engaged learning, facing adversity etc are regularly held. In various instances, suggestions and feedback regarding certain issues are solicited from the student community to enhance their life skills.
Obstacles faced if any, strategies adopted to overcome them
Despite being an initiative that has been given significant attention by the college, the mission of ‘Skilling the new generations’ often faces obstacles that decelerates its pace leading to occasional failure in producing the desired outcome. However, over the years the implications of such obstacles have been reduced with institutional and individual support. The major obstacles are:
- – Insufficient fund and non-availability of qualified faculty to start new skill- based Certificate/Diploma courses.
- – Lack of motivation of the students towards the importance of skilling is a big hurdle. Instead of enrolling in the skill-based courses, the students prefer to pursue only the general courses.
- – Presumptive mindset of the students with typical inclination towards salaried services, especially Government Services than entrepreneurship.
- – Reluctance in the part of the reputed corporates to absorb the graduates of these courses is another reason of failure to stimulate the students to join the Vocational Courses.
- – The college is continuously pursuing the Government of Assam as well as the private sector industries for funding short term certificate courses and B. Voc Courses. As far as the motivation of the students towards the skill-based courses is concerned, there have been continuous attempts for wide publicity through different media besides orientation programme.
Impact of the Practice :
Various positive implications can be attributed to the initiatives of Sonapur College for skilling the new generations over the year. For example, the initiatives for the enhancement of oratory skill and leadership quality have produced debaters and brilliant student leaders like the General Secretary of Gauhati University Students Union who have brought laurels to the institute. The students of the college have received special complements from the DSW, Gauhati University for their outstanding managerial skills displayed in the Zonal Youth Festival hosted by the college. Similarly, many of the alumni seem to have managed to carve echelon in the world of fashion, film and television world as actors, make-up artistes, craftsmen etc. The bamboo made artefacts of the students; especially dustbins have received wide acclamation in the state.
In order to augment the mission of ‘Skilling the New Generations’, the college needs both financial and human resources. Financial resource is needed primarily to initiate new skill development programme in the college. New short-term training programme for craftsmen like plumber, electrician, mobile repairing would be quite instrumental to fulfil their demand in Guwahati, the capital city of Assam which is only 25 kms away from the college. The college needs support from the concerned authority for the same.
About the Institution
Name of the Institution: Sonapur College
Year of Accreditation: First Cycle-2004
Address: Vill.- Barkhat
District-Kamrup (M), Assam
Grade awarded by NAAC: B
Contact person for further details
: Dr. Devabrot Khanikor, Principal
Mobile Phone No- +91 9435354374
Dr. Biman Patowary, Coordinator, IQAC
Mobile Phone No- +91 9435342864
Website : www.sonapurcollege.ac.in