Prospective IITians- An Appeal

It is yet another year for IIT-JEE aspirants. TV news channels are full with advisory programmes for those appearing for examinations. Special programmes have sponsorships from the mills at Kota that has become a town known to successfully provide the entry tickets to IITs. I don’t think any other country including China can compete with India on this count. Perhaps no country has so many engineering colleges at different locations under the same brand name. And so must be the case of the IIT-JEE. It must be the unique examination, may be one of the toughest too, for engineering college with so huge a number competing for it.

Come April 13, nearly 3.2 lakh students would appear at nearly 600 centres across the country for the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) for admission of nearly 4000 students into the graduate courses in IITs at Kharagpur, Mumbai, Chennai, Delhi, Kanpur, Guwahati and Roorkee. It is an increase of about 70,000 candidates over last year.

Recent news of the proposed enhancement of IITs’ fee by 100% may be irritant but certainly not deterrent for the students. Many are having favourable of enhancement and many are differing. Most banks are ready to finance the IIT education, but the feel of an inferiority complex certainly crops up among Indian parents if they can’t afford the education of their children. The growing shortage of good faculty in IITs is certainly worrying. May be the innovative teachers of IITs will come out with easier solutions with e teaching.

However, the political pressure to increase the numbers of IITs is worrying. Many professors of IITs also have raised questions about the possible diluting of the brand ‘IIT’. I agree that the mushrooming of IITs is bound to be difficult to manage its brand image.

IITs must focus on preparing the high end technology specific manpower required in industry that is required for design and development, manufacturing, quality engineering, and engineering management. Let the market forces decide the preference of the candidate between engineering and management education. I hate IITians going for IIMs after the completion of their graduation. The Corporate India is certainly encouraging it. As such, IIMs must not admit fresher. It must put a condition of five years’ industry experiences for admission, as ISM does it.

I have an appeal for the prospective IITians. Please do not join IITs if you don’t have an aptitude and attraction for the engineering excellence in different fields of contemporary technologies. If you wish to join IIMs, why should you waste the resources of IITs? It is better for you to complete graduation in any other subject and go for MBA.

I have another appeal too. Be not get morose if not selected for IITs. Many private engineering colleges are equally good if not better. IITs may ensure a better entry salary, but not a better professional success ultimately. I have seen many cases of non-IITians, even from those private colleges that are looked down upon for their high capitataion fees, achieving much better in real life in India or in USA.

For IITs, I have a request too. It must re-engineer its curiculla. It must emphasize to develop creativity and entrepreneurships among the students. IITs can think of a 5-year course to award MS. Some IITs are already having a 5-year course integrating engineering management in it. However, it could have been appreciated if the directors would have been the alumni of IITs.

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