Jammu: Principal Secretary, Higher Education & Information Department, Rohit Kansal today launched the Centre for Essential Skills (CES) here at IIT Jammu.
Speaking on the occasion, Kansal reiterated that the J&K Government is “committed to supporting institutions like the IIT Jammu and others who are willing to take efforts in improving employability of our youth.”
While complimenting the IIT on their initiative in establishing a Centre for Essential Skills, he hoped that the Centre would offer necessary not just life-skill courses but also courses in personal finance, communication and such other needs. He also complimented the IIT for making the resources of the Centre open not just to the students of the Institute but to all other institutions of the UT as well.
Referring to studies by Mckinsey and others, Kansal said that in the new world of works, soft skills like communication, empathy and complex decision making are increasingly gaining currency. He maintained that with the coming of mechanization and automation the lower order, repetitive, and lower cognitive jobs are on decline. He stated that higher order cognitive skills along with soft skills are the benchmarks for job aspirants. He emphasized that developing life skills outside of an academic curriculum will also improve the entrepreneurial potential of the youth which will further strengthen our cause of nation-building.
The Chairman of Board of Governors, Sharad Kumar Saraf who was also present on the occasion felicitated the founding Deans of the institute whose immense contribution towards the development of this institution in its nascent years was applauded by him. Professor S.N. Singh, Shiban K. Koul, Anurag Sharma, K.S. Rao, S.K. Gupta, Dinesh K. Pandya, and Devesh Jinwala were the ones who were felicitated.
Director of the IIT, Manoj Gaur said that the Centre for Essential Skills (CES) is a digital resource, which will offer several courses on its portal that will be open for anyone to apply. Elucidating further he said that the portal will be live in a week’s time & details will be found on IIT Jammu’s official website. The CES is running two minor certification programmes for non-IIT Jammu students namely, Transportation Engineering and Hydraulics and Water Resources Engineering. CES is set to open nine more courses in the next few days, that will be open for all to apply.
Dr Amitash Ojha, Head of Department further elaborated that the CES will offer courses across disciplines as well as open-ended (generic) courses that are suitable for the students. Beyond technological courses, some of the courses will promote Indian languages, culture awareness, Indian arts, music and craft. These courses will be taken up by outstanding local artists, writers, and craft persons. The course may be taught bilingually with the use of mother tongue where ever possible. Some of the technological cutting-edge areas in which courses will be floated are Artificial Intelligence (AI), 3-D Machining, Big Data Analysis, and Machine Learning, in addition to Genomic Studies, Biotechnology, Nanotechnology, and Clean Energy with important applications to health, environment, and sustainable living. All courses will be designed by the experts of the domain keeping in mind the value addition to student knowledge. There will be a bunch of courses that will teach essential skills. The nature of the course and its content will decide the credit associated with a course, it could be a 0.5 credit course or a 3 credit course
The institute also complimented its student achievers who participated in different competitions around the globe and brought laurels for IIT Jammu in the year 2021-22.
On the occasion Shubham Gaur, a final year B.tech student was conferred with IIT Jammu’s first ever “Institutional Service award” for his exemplary service during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Besides faculty members large number of students and parents of several honoured students were present on this occasion.