Higher educational institutions need to provide AI graduates experience of industry-centric real projects, writes Deepak Garg
India has recently picked up the pace in terms of embracing AI in many sectors of the economy. With a 1,300 million population, it is important to properly envision the impact of the latest technologies on our human capital. AI being a powerful tool in the latest defence and security innovations, it impacts the future of the country in terms of AI-powered nations. A billion strong aspirational youth looking for jobs in the coming years is going to be a big challenge for world leaders. Out of this, a significant proportion will be coming from India.
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With more institutions now understanding the importance of learning and outcome-based pedagogical tools, Indian higher education system is slowly coming out of its traditional outlook.
We need to pick up those institutions that are willing to strive hard to create the next level of excellence in AI. The conceptualisation of the model is that 10% of the institutions should be focussed in the first phase. These zonal leads act as a mentor or resource institution for the remaining institutions in a phase-wise manner.
Project Leadingindia.ai is one of the successful models, where this idea has been tried on a set of 100 institutions, who are further connected to 10 basic partners of the network. Institutions should also provide startups/incubator at the campus, which will help to bring real-time projects for students. Sabbaticals and internships at hub institutions are great tools for quick adaptation to new technology, work culture, and collaboration between institutions.
Knowledge base required for current engineers is increasing at a rapid pace. If we keep adding more hours to teach AI, we will injustice to the students. There must be a professional review of the curriculum with the help of industrialists and young academics. Bennett University (BU) has the advantage in terms of its lineage and philosophy in embracing all these ideas. The University’s project showcase events have been evaluated by industry experts with positive outcomes.
(The author is HOD and professor, Department of Computer Science Engineering, School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, Bennett University)