The government should take some drastic measures otherwise this situation can lead to serious issues like increase in the unemployment rate as well to badly affecting industry survival and Pakistan’s economic growth
Who will bridge the Gap between Industry and Academia?
LUMINARY partially blames universities and partially the industry.It’s industry that should take a step forward to forecast quality and human capital requirement and work together with academia to find the right solution
Education serves as the backbone for the development of nations. Education is the most important aspect of any nation’s survival today. The countries with the effective impressive need oriented, saleable and effective system of education come out to be the leaders of the world, both socially and economically. Pakistan is spending around 2.3 percent of its GDP, which is the lowest in South Asia. Pakistan is still lagging behind many countries in achieving the desired Education goals, problems of access, quality, infrastructure, and inequality of opportunity, remain endemic. Whereas the government is still not taking serious measures and lacking behind in educational policies the increase in population is another challenge. The monitoring role is still a question mark there is no proper attention of the authorities and uniform educational system.
Unfortunately, Education these days pursued by most of the private sector universities as only a money making business. With due respect, we all see every other day a new private system coming up with promotions of how many foreign scholarships their previous students have received etc. And they are hardly concerned about the quality of education as well the future of students. Neither they are much bothered about updating and designing their curriculum with the latest industry requirements. What skill set and manpower are required by industry in future, and how many numbers they should plan in each batch for example engineering, IT, Business and Art schools. They are just enrolling students in bulk without realising what are the industry needs and how they will be employed to earn and make survival if they don’t meet industry requirements. Though the number of enrollments has been increasing, the quality of education has deteriorated.
There is no proper forecasting mechanism to understand Pakistan’s next five years requirement that in which area we need what numbers of skill set, for example in engineering or IT sector what numbers of skill set is required is still just a question what to talk about their competence and matching skill level with industry needs. This is a serious issue because the new sort of multiplications of universities and schools most of the graduates are left frustrated because they don’t find suitable opportunities hence increase in unemployment rate. And this is the reason because our education system is leading altogether in an unstructured way. We are still not ready to understand our own country and industry future needs, not just in terms of skill set numbers needed in each sector but as well quality. Sadly the way academia are producing graduates without any planning and connectivity with Pakistan’s future needs will rather leave us to worst case scenario. Although the dilemma does not limit to numbers quality is another big serious issue.
Government should take some drastic measures otherwise, this situation can lead to serious increase of unemployment rate as well will badly affect Pakistan’s economic growth
Bridge the Gap between Academia and Industry
Who will bridge the Gap between Academia and Industry this is another question mark in our minds these days. But everything cannot be blamed on government although they should play their monitoring role for a structured growth and quality education in Pakistan. But it’s also industry obligation to share the forecast for their human capital requirement. When our businessmen’s are so well planned for the raw materials being utilised in production and they plan and forecast it to their suppliers and also give the quality feedback, then why can’t they take a step forward and give serious feedback and forecast to academia since whatever academia is producing is utilised by industry.
And definitely just sitting back and cribbing on the situation would not make difference, industry should come and play an active role in terms of sharing their next 5-10 years human capital requirement, and the quality of skill set they need. Unless the industry doesn’t come up with their exact requirements in terms of numbers and quality of skill set, it cannot be better fed with quality human resources.
I believe both the industry and academia should take the long-sighted approach as the both are blamed partially for this wide gap. The dilemma with most of the universities is they are more interested in taking grant rather than getting the required research and manpower requirement input from the industry which leads a more frustrating situation for some businessmen’s who are willing to give the input.
The industry needs to understand they can save the heavy cost of training and grooming their new entrances in bulk by rather preparing them early in universities by providing mentoring and sharing skill set requirements.
The ninety percent of universities from the government sector who don’t have sufficient resources to make such efforts is another alarming sign. There has been no serious effort in planning, designing and developing the curriculum with future industry needs. Unfortunately, what to crib on the government for upgrading and bringing quality education, the industry is not playing a due role. We see some of the business community visiting only LUMS and IBA the top notch universities in Pakistan. Whereas the real social cause industry should work on to understand the issues and deficiency of resources and mentoring in rest ninety percent universities, who are either from government sector or led by just moneymakers. The students studying in these ninety percent universities are mostly from rich and mediocre class desperate in need for the same mentoring and guidance, deserve their attention more than any other lucrative institutes where mostly the rich class is studying.
Why can’t we have more educational reformist and activist like Honorable Syed Babar Ali he made one LUMS where Pakistan’s need another 100 LUMS. Why our government can’t build a uniform education system maintaining the same quality like LUMS or IBA. Pakistan with a maximum population below than age of 30 our youth and talent are no less than any other student worldwide in terms of intelligence or potential all they need is a little mentoring and guidance on the right direction as well access to the right quality of education. And Pakistan can be another big country in terms of his human resource potential or export as well economic growth.
There is a small and humble request I would like to make here to the government and our very own favorite Dr Umar Saif (Punjab information technology board), since you are working on some very good software and solutions in improving governance, why can’t we have the same for education as well bridging the industry-academia gap and identifying the numbers of skill set required in each sector for next 5-10 years and also how can academia improve its curriculum with latest research and practical needs of industry. Facilitating the academia in generating right manpower for the industry will not only decrease unemployment rate and a better industry survival but will also lead Pakistan to a faster economic growth.