Microsoft India is launching an employability enhancement and internship-placement support program at Indian technical and non-technical colleges. To fulfill this, it aims to tie-up with colleges where its technologies, training support, certifications and in the later stage connections to internship and placement will be available. Microsoft will provide most of the technologies for free and some at subsidized costs to colleges coming into the program.
The program was launched in Pune by Sanket Akerkar, Managing Director, Microsoft Corporation India. He also addressed a meeting of the company’s resellers, who will further take the program to colleges. Every college which aims to become a part of this program — the company calls it Ed-vantage–, can send in an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and start the process to get in to the program.
The IT/ITES industry association Nasscom last year came up with the now famous statistics of only 25% technical graduates being employable. A study by MBAUniverse-Meritrac pegged MBA employability at 21% in August this year. Early this week, assessment company Aspiring Minds in a report stated that employability is below 10% for functional role in HR, marketing or finance, and as low as 2.5% for business consulting roles.
According to Akerkar, employability is a major challenge for companies and also for colleges. He said,”With the Ed-vantage program, we have a structured way for colleges to work with Microsoft, use our technologies and training programs, and enhance skills in their students to become both employable and innovative.”
Under this program, there are four levels of partnership status for colleges, which differ in benefits available to them. Colleges accumulate points as and when their students make use of the technologies and build skills. Perks to colleges include listing on Microsoft’s portal, connections with corporates for internships and placements, free training programs from Microsoft, etc.
In order to be eligible to enrol in the program, educational institutes should be using licensed versions of Microsoft software, mainly Windows and Office. The company also expects all students to be subscribers of the hosted-version Office 365, which anyway is free for students. Colleges will be monitored on their progress and as they keep on accruing points, the benefits available to them also increase.