A day with the President of Germany and the Legend of India

“How to Tackle the Skills Mismatch in India – A Company Driven Approach” was an Indo – German Conference which brought eminent personalities from the corporates from India and Germany. The conference was held at the Infosys campus in Bangalore on the 6th and 7th February 2014.

The highlight of the day was the presence of one of India’s most celebrated Entrepreneurial Legends Mr N R Narayana Murthy and the Distinguished Federal President of Germany, H.E. Joachim Gauck.

It was an honour for me to represent the Indo German Training Centre (IGTC) at the conference on the second day. I was invited to participate in the panel discussion – “The voice of the youth: The chances of vocational education and training” which was moderated by Mr John West, Executive Director, Asian Century Institute.

The discussion involved seven participants from various institutes which provide vocational training in India. It started off with an introduction of the participants’ educational background and a deliberation on what motivated them to choose a different line from the rest of the conventional choices. In a country like India where universities and colleges are the regular means of acquiring a degree, there are still a handful that choose to go a different way than the rest.

The participants spoke about their experiences and the immense opportunities of learning and exposure that is derived out of the vocational training. Being a student from IGTC which follows the vocational education system in India I was able to share my personal experience as a student in class and the application of the theoretical knowledge when I pursued internship in a manufacturing industry. The discussion also revolved around whether this system helps students learn better or the conventional means of acquiring a degree would be better. Having an engineering degree and an exposure in the vocational system at IGTC, I was able to compare and talk about the pros and cons of a conventional degree and vocational training. The panellists were highly motivated to share their thoughts on how skills can be developed during on hand training rather than in class. The floor was open to questions at the end of the discussion from the corporates and professors from across the globe.

The voice of young India was very loud and clear that vocational training must indeed be practiced at all levels of the education system, helping the students learn the skills rather than being a novice when they are joining the corporates.

My already bright and exciting day was filled with respect, reverence and awe when I got a providential opportunity to meet the entrepreneurial giant Mr N R Narayana Murthy who acknowledged my participation in the panel and appreciated my confidence. It was a moment that I will cherish all my life.

Gheerdhardhini M – Batch 2012-2014