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Turn US visa restrictions into opportunities

The Trump administration’s decision to change visa rules and temporarily block H1B visas is a setback for Indian students, but other countries have made it up with lucrative educational offers.

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India is the second largest source of international students after China with over 7.5 lakh students. Amid global coronavirus pandemic, several countries have introduced restrictive visa and immigration policies, thus putting the future of overseas students, especially from India, in limbo.

Many foreign universities sent students back home and continued with digital blackboards. The United States, the most preferred destination for Indian students (over 2 lakh students), recently changed its visa policies and temporarily blocked H1B visas which came as a bolt from the blue for Indians. The US, which claims to be India’s natural strategic partner, is now thinking to switch to merit-based immigration. Under this new rule, international students may stay in the country only if they attend a college or university offering in-person classes. Otherwise, they won’t be able to get visas (Including F1 and M1 visas as well) to enter the country or stay there if they plan to attend one of the many schools that are teaching students entirely online. The new order pertains to F1 students who are pursuing academic courses and M1 students who are pursuing vocation coursework.

US President Donald Trump’s order has now become a major cause of worry among Indian students as their visas might not get renewed and they might face deportation as well. Now most students are thinking of moving to Canada which is the second most preferred destination after the US, followed by Australia which ranks third.

However, many European countries adapted themselves wisely to the situation. The UK government has issued guidance and has confirmed that international students, including Indians, will remain eligible for poststudy work rights at the end of their degree course even if they have to begin the 2020- 21 academic year online from abroad. The post-study work visa, designed for overseas students will make them able to work or look for work for two years after completing their course. This will apply to the 2020-21 intake as long as they are physically present in the UK by April 2021 to complete the final semester.

Barry O’Driscoll, Senior Education Adviser for Education in Ireland

 France too remains a top destination as far as Indian students are concerned. The French Ambassador has also recently emphasised the overall strong Indo-French bilateral cooperation and the French attractiveness in the fields of research and higher education. A significant testimony to this strengthening relationship is the 50% increase in scholarships for the academic year which translates to Rs 10 crore. And now with France lifting nonSchengen travel restrictions from July and students’ visas being processed on priority, it is ready to welcome students on campus from September, although, initially the focus would be on the physical delivery model.

 France is gearing up for a September intake like most other European countries, though Asian students will require a closer monitoring and assistance with travel and visas. The measures for the September intake include physical distancing, rolling classes, restructuring of activities within the curriculum for the MSc programmes; inter-campus digital interactions, digital pre-intake classes from October to December with a spring intake for the MBA programmes.

Ashley Fernandes, the country
head for India, Emlyon Business
School, France

“Needless to mention, this is a VUCA (volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous) situation. However, latest studies show that the global health crisis notwithstanding, majority of students who had planned higher education abroad want to continue because international universities have been expeditious in enhancing healthy safety frameworks for students while putting in place stronger support systems and incentives at the same time,” said Ashley Fernandes, the country head for India, Emlyon Business School, France.

“The main conversation we are having right now with Indian students is how to transform this constraint into an opportunity and we are mostly trying and helping them with increased scholarships to cope with the current situation and help them alleviate the financial burden. We are also helping some prospective students manage their risk assessment with deferment options,” he added.

 The global health crisis notwithstanding, the majority of those who had planned higher education abroad would want to continue because international universities have been expeditious in enhancing healthy safety frameworks for students while putting in place stronger support systems and incentives at the same time. The government of Ireland has just announced that its visa application centres in India have reopened to process Indian student visas, in advance of September. In the initial stages of the pandemic, the Irish government had taken a series of measures, based on scientific advice, to slow the spread of the virus. The Irish government had quickly announced that in terms of healthcare, all international students in Ireland, of all nationalities who were directly affected by Covid-19 would have full access to the necessary part of Irish healthcare system, at no cost. Alongside that, the Irish government also decided that any international student who lost part-time work as a result of Covid-19 would be entitled to an emergency payment of EUR 350 per week, which is reassuring to students who had lost their part time job.

Barry O’Driscoll, Senior Education Adviser for Education in Ireland, said, “For us it is important that international students who remained in Ireland were taken care of. On the academic side, all lecturers and tutors are available online as students now undertake assessments. Higher education students across the world have seen the impact of covid-19 across all walks of life and because of that, expectations have evolved in terms of delivery of higher education programmes. There are currently a large number of Indian students who hold offers for places in Irish higher education institutions, particularly at the Masters level. In Ireland all institutions have developed blended learning options, where online and face to face learning is mixed.”

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Educationally Speaking

Rephrased Content: How much is this acceptable in professional writing.

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Rephrasing is the technique of rewriting a text in a new way while maintaining the original meaning. The majority of people misinterpret rephrasing and believe it merely entails rewording or rephrasing the language. Rephrasing includes modifying the sequence of words in the text, whereas rewording is a simple procedure of replacing terms with synonyms. Rephrasing in an academic environment refers to expressing someone else’s ideas or work in your own words in an essay paper.

REPHRASE CONTENT-?

In simple terms, paraphrasing or rephrasing is the process of putting a concept or piece of information into your own words. This method is commonly used to demonstrate your ability to present the same material in your own words, demonstrating your comprehension.

  • According to Wikipedia, paraphrasing is the repetition of a text using other terms while maintaining its original meaning.
  • The Oxford Dictionary defines paraphrasing as “changing the sentence formation of a remark published by someone else.”

When reading a novel, book, article, or report with a complicated sentence structure, it can be difficult to understand or take a long time to grasp the gist of the source. As a result, paraphrasing is necessary to transform a complex sentence into a simpler one. It makes it easier for the average reader to comprehend.

When paraphrasing, the writer researches by reading a variety of sources and texts that have similar messages. They read them, set them aside, and then compose their article or academic paper without consulting the reference texts they had previously read. One inserts their own words, message, or concept from many sources and literature.

Rephrased Content in Professional Writing 

Plagiarism is a severe threat to your writing plan. It raises your chances of falling behind in the rankings race. Your aim is to stand out among the hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of other sellers and product promoters. Paraphrasing is a technique that writers can use to avoid plagiarizing content in their text without committing plagiarism. Using rephrased content is not illegal at all, but you need to show ethics by not copying its core. You just can extract an idea from the content & then put it in your own word & writing style.

For using paraphrased content, you must be careful of the following aspects: the meaning is the same in both cases. The majority of the wording has been altered. The sentences have been restructured extensively. The data is backed up with references. These are a few points that can save you from plagiarizing & slide you into a safer zone of paraphrased content.

Blogging is a popular way for professional writers to advertise their company ideas. You won’t go through this unless you develop original content that isn’t plagiarized. People are intelligent enough to recognize the original, and by doing so, you risk jeopardizing your credibility. Similarly, your competitor may file a lawsuit accusing you of stealing. Therefore, if you want to build your consumer base or produce leads, you’ll need original content.

As a result, a sentence changer spares you from these issues by completely paraphrasing your information.

When creating a blog, a paraphrasing tool saves your time and work. You can put the time and effort you put into writing a plagiarism-free blog toward creating more material. A paraphrasing tool completes the paraphrasing process in a matter of seconds. Due to the easy accessibility of sentence changes, you no longer need to invest time or physical effort in rephrasing online

It takes time to get to the bottom of the theme of improved expression. Writing a single unique blog can take several hours. However, you may utilize the tool to rephrase numerous pieces of material in a significantly shorter amount of time.

It is also best to adjust the writing structure and the text, delete unneeded portions and simplify the language to avoid plagiarism. If the writer uses the author’s direct quotation, they must use quotation marks and include a proper in-text citation with a page number; otherwise, plagiarism checkers, whether unpaid or paid, will flag it as duplicated content.

Many online plagiarism remover and paraphrasing tools are available based on complex algorithms that deliver high-quality content rephrasing to its consumers. These online paraphrase tools don’t just replace a few words with synonyms; it aims to provide you with a newer version of an existing article that includes a thorough restatement. 

Sometimes, users are not required to register or pay anything to utilize an online plagiarism checker. Its automated algorithms handle everything without the need for human intervention. So, after rewriting your content must pass your article through a plagiarism test.

Conclusion

Rephrasing content is a clever choice because it provides adequate proof to back the views and ideas. It is an essential component of professional writing, and research has shown that paraphrasing aids in acquiring new subjects. By combining numerous topic ideas into a single cohesive article, paraphrasing is also an excellent method for avoiding plagiarism. For professional writing in general, paraphrasing is a highly respected choice.

You can reap the benefits of content writing if and only if you improve your skills and use tools such as the rewrite tool. To get listed on top pages and generate leads as a content writer, you must develop interesting, plagiarism-free, SEO-optimized content.

By creating SEO-friendly, entertaining, and plagiarism-free blogs and reviews, you can realize your aim of reaching the pinnacle of your online business. A paraphrasing tool can be helpful in this situation.

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Educationally Speaking

Strengthen your Ivy League admission preparation with research papers

Vivek Bhandari

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One common factor that we have noted in the resumes of students admitted to the Ivy Leagues and other top colleges is the prevalence of research work while still in high school.

In this article, we explain how and why exposure to research helps students and the key steps in planning and writing high-quality research papers. There are three main reasons, as to why research papers help students stand out. A high-quality research paper shows that you have the energy and the initiative to go beyond what is taught in the class and apply it to real-life problems.

It shows that your interest in the subject extends beyond the questions provided at the end of the chapter. Secondly, you learn the discipline of not rushing intuitively to the likely answer, instead of using a deliberate process in which you are guided by the data. Lastly, in working with a skilled professor or mentor you learn how to organise your thoughts better, ask the right questions and try to answer those questions in the best way possible subject to the constraints. A good work product provides an insight into your mind, thought process and way of working.

The following steps apply to high school students that want to learn more and differentiate themselves by conducting research and documenting it with a research paper.

DECIDE YOUR SUBJECT

The first question a student needs to answer is, “What is your favourite subject ?”. Do you like reading books and news related to that subject?

If for example, your favourite subject is economics, do you like to read the business newspaper, about the budget or interest rate changes? Are you able to relate what you have read in your textbooks with what you observe in the newspaper?

If your favourite subject is Physics, do you like to participate in science fairs or Olympiads in your school or city? Do you enjoy reading books by eminent Physicists? Do you like making science projects or designing models?

FIND THE RIGHT MENTOR

Once you know your subject, the next step is to find a strong mentor with experience in that field. You can find good mentors from an industry background or academia. For conducting research, it is advisable to have a mentor from academia as they are used to thinking broadly and spending time on framing the right question. Mentors with an industry background are generally better if you are trying to learn a specific activity or skill pertaining to their area.

Literature Review – Examine existing research papers in your subject

A crucial step in the research is to evaluate existing materials and recent developments in your subject. You need to know; a) the important topics that researchers are working on and b) what tools, statistical methods and data collection techniques are used. This is where a good mentor can share their work and help you understand the recent developments in that field.

UNDERSTAND YOUR CONSTRAINTS

Before you embark on a project, you need to understand what you can and cannot do. The time and resources available to, and the expectations from, a doctoral student is different, than those from an undergraduate student.

It is important to understand: i) the available time frame and ii) the available resources before you launch. For example, if you have access to a laboratory where you can test samples or conduct experiments, your data collection will be markedly different from someone who is conducting similar research based on a literature review. Understanding the constraints also helps the student decide whether to pursue Primary or Secondary Research.

CHOOSE YOUR TOPIC

By now you should be ready to choose your topic. The topic can be based on: a) recent events or research, b) your vision or imagination or c) literature review. You should have an idea of your constraints (available time and resources) available to you in your pursuit. At this stage, you should discuss your research plan with your mentor and finalise the topic.

FRAME THE RIGHT ‘QUESTION’

The number 42 is, in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams, the “Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything,” calculated by an enormous supercomputer named Deep Thought over 7.5 million years. Unfortunately, no one knows what the question is. Thus, to calculate the Ultimate Question, a special computer the size of a small planet was built from organic components and named “Earth”.

In real life, not asking the right question does not always lead to a dramatic answer like 42. However, it always leads to a significant waste of time and effort. Therefore, its important to take time and carefully frame your question or hypothesis.

ANSWER THE ‘QUESTION’

With a well-designed framework and research plan in place, you are finally ready for the races. You can start collecting the data and use it to answer your question(s). Despite all the planning and effort, you will still find new issues and problems. You may be able to overcome some of these yourselves and should consult with your mentor on the ones you find insurmountable.

A high-quality research paper provides an insight into your thought process and work ethic. The experience of learning your favourite subject beyond the textbooks while working with an accomplished mentor is an enriching and valuable life lesson. 

The writer is the Chief Executive and Co-founder of Scholarly.

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Educationally Speaking

HOW PRACTICAL IS DIGITISATION IN GOVT-RUN SCHOOLS GIVEN THE CHALLENGES AROUND DEVICES?

Rustom Kerawalla

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In the past few years, the government has taken various initiatives to promote digital learning under the National Mission on Education through Information and Communication Technology (NMEICT). eBasta is an initiative that offers a framework to make school books accessible in digital form as e-books to be read and used on tablets and laptops. Further, a few other initiatives include SWAYAM, SWAYAM Prabha, National Digital Library (NDL), Spoken Tutorial, Free and Open Source Software for Education (FOSSEE), Virtual Lab, E-Yantra, and Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). Through the Digital India initiative, plans are afoot to connect various distant areas with high-speed Internet networks. 

There are, however, challenges that exist when it comes to the initiation of complete digitisation, especially in government-run schools.

THE NEED FOR DIGITAL EQUIPMENT

Providing digital equipment is considered paramount in determining a digital school. Computers, television screens of a minimum size of 32 inches, LCD projectors, Android computer stick, screen-mirroring dongles, tablets and teachers’ phones remain some of the prerequisites for promoting digitisation. The list of specified equipment is quite vast, it does not allow for consistency in the equipment required across digital schools. For instance, even if one classroom has any of the specified equipment, it is often considered sufficient for the entire school to be termed as digital. This should not be the case if holistic learning of students remains the aim for promoting digitisation. Further, the number of students who will use each digital equipment is also not taken into consideration. 

TECH-SAVVY TEACHERS ARE A PREREQUISITE

Essentially, tech-savvy teachers are considered a key prerequisite for the digital preparedness of schools, indicating that regular training of educators is necessary for digital schools. There is a further need for clarity on what is expected from teachers when it comes to tech-savviness. The government-run training should be aimed at cogent and systemic capacity-building frameworks. Often there are issues of connectivity while participating in online activities during a training camp. At the same time, there have been instances where self-motivated teachers have gone ahead and built their digital skillsets without any formal training.

CREATION OF QUALITY DIGITAL CONTENT

Ideally, teachers need to be discerning in effectively using e-resources for classroom interactions. Take, for instance, e-resources for teaching mathematical fractions in primary classes, teachers shouldn’t assume that merely watching videos of fractions being taught will enhance their understanding. That they also need real-time and prompt feedback on queries while watching the videos, which also needs to be looked into. While various audio-visual contents are available, there is a need for more, which are intended to align with the textbook content. On the other hand, educators or teachers could be encouraged to use various government-approved apps to proactively create and upload content on these apps for the benefit of the education fraternity at large.

While these challenges still reflect the ground reality of dissemination of digital education in schools in far-flung areas of India, the government can look towards harnessing the considerable experience of PPP entities and NGOs in school education, while seeking an arrangement for collaborative engagement. The participation of the private sector and NGOs in managing and operating schools will be an enabler in providing a modern and high-quality framework for education and boost the sector to engage with many more projects under the PPP model.  

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Educationally Speaking

WHAT OPTIONS DO ASPIRANTS HAVE?

As dynamic as the media industry can be, it is now time for students and professionals to up their game to avail new opportunities in the new-age world.

VIVECK VASWANI

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The Covid pandemic pushed almost all industries in India to digitise, creating a new way of working online. In the longer term, the internet will create processes that far outlive the pandemic because of the three Es: Economics, Efficiency, and Effectiveness. This is especially true with the media which has adapted to thrive during the pandemic in a way that the paradigm shift is permanent.

Newspapers, magazines and tabloids went online to deliver news, most TV channels released ‘apps’, becoming not only time agnostic but also on-the-go. The explosion of Internet users in the country has been pivotal in bringing about this change. How does this impact jobs in the media industry when the concept of fixed time and place, and screen consumption is being replaced with any time and anywhere?

The media, as we know it today, is all-encompassing. It collectively includes over 100 separate, diverse, unique and distinct industries. As digitisation ramps up in these industries, technologically and digitally literate people will lead the change. Industries that can run and thrive when people work from home will prosper, while those where people cannot work from home will take a hit.

WHAT WILL BE IN DEMAND IN THE MEDIA INDUSTRY?

In the current and future scenario, these professions will shape the outcome of the media industry: 

 Digital Marketing 

Most companies have moved their advertising, publicity and marketing strategies online. A digital marketer can use technology, work from home and still be immensely productive. India is one of the fastest-growing economies and with online opportunities on the rise, everything is just a click away – whether it is food, fashion, groceries, movies or music. The digital universe has unlocked employment offers in direct proportion to this humongous and still growing demand. 

 Content Writing and Creation/Social Media Influencer

These opportunities can be conducted from home as well as remote locations. Content writing for films, ads, TV shows, books, articles, blogs, documentaries, short films, corporate and industrial films, OTT platforms, digital magazines or blogs will take off. The more we consume digital content, the more in-demand content writers will be. The same is the case for the creation of content using photos, short videos, and interviews conducted online because of the sheer size of content consumption on social media platforms. Users with a certain number of followers on social media are paid to influence their followers and are in great demand to sell various products and services. 

 Radio Professionals and Voice Artistes 

With the growing demand for nonstop content and because shooting content on site has become a challenge, radio has moved up the list. Radio Jockeys are thriving, talking nonstop from home on their FM channels or through podcasts. Podcasters are setting up their infrastructure to broadcast from home, building loyal audiences and fan followings translating into sizable revenue. 

These are already some of the most sought after careers, and online will further propagate their reach and demand. 

UPCOMING CHALLENGES FOR THE INDUSTRY

With a boom in the uptake of digital services, let us not forget that there will also be challenges. Companies now look at people they hire differently. Organisations struggling to change the way they operate are aggressively looking at getting a piece of the digital pie from their competitors. In addition, being a media entrepreneur has its own challenges – building a business, connecting with leads, sustaining income, on-time payments etc. – to succeed. There is a good chance that the upcoming digital world will not adhere to only two languages: English and Hindi. This will instill a need for language diversity and even digital coding from kids and teenagers. As dynamic as the media industry can be, it is now time for students and professionals to up their game to avail new opportunities in the new-age world. This is a time of great challenges and great opportunities.

The writer is Dean, School Of Contemporary Media, Pearl Academy.

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Educationally Speaking

‘Role Of New Age Global Universities’: Dr. Y.S.R Murthy, Vice-Chancellor, RV University

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Dr. Y.S.R Murthy, Vice-Chancellor, RV University joined NewsX for an insightful session on ‘Role Of New Age Global Universities’. In the exclusive conversation, he spoke to us about the inception of RV University, various amenities on the campus, what makes RV University different from others and much more. Read excerpts:

Q1. Who established the RV University and what is the background?

A: The Rashtreeya Sikshana Samithi trust is sponsoring body that has established the RV University. This public charitable trust has a rich legacy of 8 decades in the field of education. In the year 1940 pre-dating independence, we started with one school for six children in a modest way. Today, there are over 20 colleges for Technology, Management, Architecture, Law, physiotherapy, Nursing, etc. and we felt the need to establish a university for promoting a liberal education. RV University has been established under the RV University Act 2019, passed by the Karnataka legislature.

Q2. You are the Founding Vice-Chancellor. Please tell us more about your own academic journey. 

A: I hold a Master’s degree in statistics from the University of Madras, where I stood university first and I also have a Master’s degree in Human rights from the University of London as a British achieving scholar and a Ph.D. in Law from the Dr. Ambedkar Law University, Chennai. As regards my professional life I am a civil servant turned academic and have over 36 years of experience in the government, Academia, and NGO sector. I joined the government of India in 1985 and held many responsible and sensitive assignments including in the National human right commission, Prime minister’s office, President’s secretariat, and cabinet secretariat between 2009 and 2020. I have steered the OP Jindal Global University during its rapid expansion face as a part of its top leadership aim, including as a registrar. I have contributed to its race in international rankings and becoming an institution of imminence. I have assumed charge as the first Vice-chancellor of RV University, Bangalore recently.

Q3. What is the vision of RV University?

A: RV University aspires to be a world-class university known for academic excellence, research, international collaborations, diversity, interdisciplinary studies, sustainability, social commitment, and community engagement. In addition, RV University which has to be a responsible ethical, and collaborative partner to local industry, Government, and other organizations, in short, a technology-driven global university committed to liberal education.

Q4. How does RV University plan to translate this vision into a reality?

A: The RV University has prepared a 5-year strategic plan, which includes a detailed academic plan, research plan, infrastructure plan, Manpower plan, finance plan and other plans. It has recruited outstanding faculties members, who are leaders in their chosen fields. It has built a rich curriculum in close consultation with industry partners and other external stakeholders. It has forged substantive collaboration both in India and abroad with key partners. 

Q5. What programmes are currently offered at RV University? 

A: We have started with 3 schools in the current year dealing with liberal arts and sciences, design. There is a school for economic and finance in each of these schools we have programs ranging from undergraduate to post-graduate and Ph.D.’s both full time and part-time. The school of liberal arts and sciences offers a three-year BA Honors program and also three years BS.C honors degree. In addition, it also offers a unique four-year BS.C honors program in defical sciences. The school of design offers a four-year Bachelors of design or Under two year Master of design. under the school of Economics and finance, there is a BA honors in economics as well as MA economics, in addition to B.com and BBA honors.

Q6. Are the courses of RV University recognised by the regulatory agencies?

A: Yes, of course, we have been constituted under the RV university act 2019 passed by the Karnataka Legislature. In-fact the Karnataka government has issued a gazette notification specifying 16th June 2021 as the start date for the coming into force of the RV university act. We are also recognised by the university grants commission under sec 2F of the UGC act. Thus or regulatory approvals are in place.

Q7. When will the courses start in the RV University? What is the academic plan? 

A: We are ready to commence academic degree programs in all respects. Initially, we planned to start in the month of September but because of the Covid situation and advisories from the regulated agencies, we will start on 1st October 2021.

Q8.  How is RV University different from other Universities? 

A: Our degree programs have a sharp India focus, regardless of weather new education policy has been implemented or not. RV university has already implemented inter-disciplinary in its true sense. We have no cilos what-so-ever in our university that a lot of synergy, different schools, and program. We will open our facilities to students from other institutions in India and abroad to come and earn credits here, which can be eventually transferred to their parent institutions.

Q9. What kind of learning opportunities are available to the students of RV University? 

A: RV university has already forged a number of substantive collaborations with top institutions in India and abroad. These include among others, the University of Essex (United Kingdom), which ranks among the top three in fifty as per the Times Higher education world University ranking. We  have signed the MOU with CNA College, New York, which is a liberal arts college. We also signed an MOU with the University of Sofia, Bulgaria and we are collaborating with the University of Narowal and in addition to this many other collaborations which are currently on in the UK, USA, Australia, and other parts of the world. Even much before the start and commencement of the degree programs, they opened a range of learning opportunity for our students. It could be a collaboration in the Ph.D.’s research program or semester abroad program at undergraduate or postgraduate level or a dual degree program and many other ways there are a range of learning opportunities for our students. 

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WHY EXECUTIVE EDUCATION IS SO IMPORTANT FOR SKILL DEVELOPMENT AND CAREER GROWTH

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A recent survey conducted by the National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM) concluded that more than 50% of the Indian professionals will have to upskill themselves to match the changing dynamics of the industry. The major areas of progress include technical skills such as Big Data Analytics (BDA) and Artificial Intelligence (AI), along with qualitative skills such as problem assessment, negotiations, and business communications.

Professionals, who demonstrate proven expertise in emerging technologies, while keeping up with the rapid evolutions in the field, are in growing demand. In such an environment, organisations are motivating their employees to re-skill themselves constantly so that their existing knowledge base does not become redundant. While freshers with management education enter the job market possessing updated managerial skills, it is becoming essential for the existing employees to bridge their knowledge-gap to compete with them and advance their careers.

WHAT IS AN EXECUTIVE EDUCATION PROGRAMME?

Top management schools in India and abroad have recognised the gap in the demands of the industry and the existing workforce. Therefore, they are curating short, but intensive courses that are aimed at helping working professionals to upskill themselves. These courses concern a diverse range of topics ranging from leadership programmes, negotiations, emerging technologies, strategising practices, among others. The rationale behind all these programmes is to enrich the existing skill sets of the working professionals and prepare them for the evolving market scenarios.

It is to be noted here that these executive programmes are distinct from regular management degree courses. They are professional development courses that usually conclude with a certification or a diploma on completion. The focus of the executive education programme is around case-solving and building on the core skills with practical industry scenarios.

WHY PROFESSIONALS SHOULD PURSUE THIS

Changing business scenarios, the world over demands a range of advanced skill sets for business professionals to stay ahead in the curve of competition. The impact of an executive education is not only to upgrade one’s resume but also ensure upgrading of core business skills that a professional must acquire.

A certification in a niche functional area with advanced knowledge garners the attention of top recruiters from reputed organisations. Furthermore, it strengthens the position of the individual in her/his existing organisation and also entitles her/him to promising opportunities for securing a more advanced role in the organisation. Additionally, an executive education broadens the perspectives of an individual and enhances her/his business vision. While pursuing these courses, professionals with diverse corporate experiences get to interact with others. This helps in gaining deeper insights about myriad domains in the market and exploring possibilities of growth in them. Collaborative projects and assignments constitute a significant part of such courses that serve as great team building and communication exercises.

Compared to full-time management programmes, an executive MBA programme does not require a professional to take a break in her/his career. These courses are designed as per the convenience of working professionals so that they can establish a convenient balance between their work and education. This also helps a working professional to apply the concepts she/he learns in the classrooms to practical real-life scenarios enabling her/him to receive prompt feedback about the usage of their upgraded skills, which facilitates deeper learning.

THE BOTTOM LINE

The Covid-19 pandemic has caused severe disruptions in the business ecosystem. The market has faced dire consequences of such an unforeseen challenge. The rates of layoffs and company shutdowns have spiked up. While business experts and analysts continue to assess the consequences of these transitions, working professionals must upgrade themselves to stay relevant in a potentially difficult job market.

Pursuing an executive MBA programme is meant to equip working managers with the knowledge and advanced skills-set which will prepare them to survive through the toughest challenges they are likely to encounter in the post-pandemic era.

The writer is Dean (Academics) at FORE School of Management, New Delhi.

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