Two decades ago, acquiring an engineering seat was the last step towards a reputed career as the employment rate of engineers was quite high. With burgeoning of engineering colleges throughout the country, fresh engineers have clouded the market, which reduced the professional demand drastically. Yet, many hold the belief that anyone with an engineering degree sails through life smoothly. In the present scenario, it can only be considered as a reverie. Over the years, the definition of engineering has changed significantly. Studies show that, along with a candidate's technical skills corporate companies give equal or more preference to factors such as social etiquette, business etiquette, communication and networking skills. Engineering institutes, who are not aware about the shift in trends, are on the verge of closing down. Making a difference from this horde is Noida Institute of Engineering and Technology (NIET).
Established in 2001, NIET started as a modest campus in Noida with intake of 240 students and 4 engineering streams. "The idea behind starting up a higher education institution was to give quality education with quality placements," says Raman Batra, Director – CMC and PFS, NIET. With likeminded people as founding members, NIET brought a revolution in the engineering education and Raman Batra holds a major credit of it. The idea was to setup a finishing school as part of existing curriculum and in search of perfect prototype, Batra visited many campuses, which includes Carnegie Mellon University, U.S., Good Shepherd Finishing School, Ooty and CDAC, Pune. "What I noticed in these finishing schools was that they either focused on technical skills or communications skills. This made me think about comprehensive finishing school," says Batra. He was not wrong and from this belief, NIET established India's first comprehensive finishing school called Pyramid Finishing School (PFS) in 2007.
One Pyramid and Five Pillars
NIET's Pyramid Finishing School (PFS) is a place where students are trained according to the industry requirements giving individual students a holistic improvement. Under this finishing school, the institute trains the students not only in the areas like soft skills, life skills, technical skills and etiquettes but also exposing the students to time management, team-work and project management. Along with regular academics, NIET inculcated the concepts of finishing school from the second year of student's life inside the campus. "From the beginning of third semester to the end of seventh semester, we train students in five important modules, which includes soft edge, image edge, techie edge, corporate edge and sharpen skill edge," explains Batra.
While modules like soft edge and image edge will help the students in developing their communication and personality, other modules like techie edge and corporate edge will help the students in adapting to the corporate environment with ease. "Getting a job is not the end, it is the beginning. When student moves from a campus to corporate, they undergo a big transformation and our aim is to make it easier for our students," says Batra. Tata consultancy Services, one of the leading MNCs in the country, has also accredited the Pyramid Finishing School and is talks with other institutes to replicate the model.
Apart from molding students under the finishing school programs, NIET has tie-ups with many corporate giants like Microsoft, Oracle, KPMG, ICICI Bank and many more. Even though, all these tie-ups are inclined towards the IT sector, the institute has collaborated with many core companies. Their tie-up with German manufacturing company who are into the latest 3D printing technology is one such example to this. "3D printing is one of the latest technologies coming in big way to India and we have already started training our students in that technology," says Batra. These tie-ups not only promises to enhance student employability by manifold, but also takes the lead in encouraging 'innovative' learning like never before.
NIET's industry relations are not limited to training the students. Every year the institute conducts HR conclaves in the major cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and so on. "The ideas of these Conclaves are to bring senior HR people and showcase what we are doing. We also take inputs from them and inculcate it our curriculum," clams Batra. With a massive support from the industry people, NIET revise their training methodologies frequently. The concept of PFS and an active industry institute relations has resulted in a steep increase in the employability of students. NIET has an excellent track record of repetitive placement visits by the country's top-notch employers resulting in the exponential growth in the placement numbers over the years. TCS, Accenture, IBM, Oracle, HCL, Infosys, Wipro, Erricson, Sunlife financial, Reliance, Honeywell, Mphasis, L&T are few to name among them.
NIET is celebrating its 14 years of success saga this year. During these years, NIET grown with leaps and bounds from a modest technical campus to group of education institution with capacity intake of 2250 students per year. In this long run, they always matched their curriculum with the needs of industry, which makes them the picture perfect prototype of technical education.
He is the Director of Career Management Cell (CMC), Pyramid Finishing School (PFS) and NIET Business School. Under his leadership, the institute extended their placement activities to Middle East and African countries by setting up an office at Dubai.