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Universities must produce multi-skilled students of tomorrow, says Vice President Naidu

Vice President Venkaiah Naidu on Tuesday urged the universities to produce multi-skilled students for the future and said that the varsities should convert themselves into centres of excellence.

“Basically, the universities must produce multi-skilled students of tomorrow and for that to happen, the varsities must convert themselves into centres of excellence,” Naidu said, adding, “The Industries must also come forward to fund research activities in universities.”

Saying that Google can never replace a Guru, the Vice President said as per the ancient Guru-Shishya parampara, the teacher is the most venerated person by the disciple.

“As per our ancient Guru-Shishya parampara (tradition), the teacher is the most venerated person by the disciple,” he said, adding, “Although modern day students get all the information they require at the click of a mouse by going to Google, it should be noted that Google can never replace a Guru.”

Highlighting that the institutions of higher learning need to raise the standards, improve methods of pedagogy and enhance research activities, he said the students as a result are well equipped to face the challenges of a globalised world.

“There is every need for the institutions of higher learning to raise the standards, improve methods of pedagogy, enhance research activities and form greater linkages with the industry so that the students are well equipped to face the challenges of a globalised world in which digital technologies are playing a leading role,” he said.

Technology is changing so rapidly that students not only need to anticipate the future requirements but must be able to develop the technologies of tomorrow.

Addressing a meeting at the inauguration of the first two blocks of Vellore Institute of Technology (VIT) at Inavolu in Amravati region, he said, “The education system developed by the British was aimed at serving them rather than benefiting the country.

“At the time of Independence, India had only around 20 universities and 500 affiliated colleges with a meager enrolment of less than one lakh students. The education system of those days was narrow and elitist, he said, adding, “As per latest reports, the country now has around 760 Universities, 38,498 colleges and 12,276 standalone institutions with a total enrolment of around 3.4 crore students.”

“The Government has taken many initiatives to transform the higher education sector with the motto of ‘Education for All and Quality Education’. Several new institutions have been started during the last two and half year, including 6 new IITs, 7 new IIMs, 8 IIITS and other highly esteemed institutions across the country,” he further said.

The vice-president expressed hope that once the Indian economy strengthens, the government will spend more funds on education and higher learning.

Manmath Nayak

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