Before COVID-19 hit the world and colleges closed their campuses to curb the spread of the virus, engineering education in India was under the threat of unemployability. Reports after reports indicated that there is a huge gap between industry and academia, which called for long-term systemic changes in engineering education in India. They said the engineering curriculum is based on rote learning and regurgitation at the time of examination and not in acquiring practical knowledge. Indeed, many engineering institutions still follow the traditional method of teaching, which is more of content delivery than knowledge delivery.
Today, however, engineering education has a different set of challenges to overcome. As an impact of the pandemic, the economy has fallen into a recession and affected companies who recruit new talent. Recent recruitment trends show that the jobs coming in the IT sector – the most prominent recruiter of engineering graduates – would either reduce or be re-engineered to suit the changed set-up. Since many companies would prefer to keep their employees working from home in the future, automation is going to be the key. Be it the education sector, the health-care industry, the manufacturing sector or the construction industry, automation with a focus on Artificial Intelligence, Data Sciences, Machine Learning, and Internet of Things (IoT) are going to be the critical drivers.
To tap the opportunities available in the post-COVID era, engineer education should come out of the traditional mindset and think out-of-the-box to come up with innovative solutions. In this issue, we feature 25 Most Innovative Engineering Colleges in India’ that have been pro-active during the pandemic to prepare engineering students for future challenges. On the cover, we feature Shoolini University, one of the private universities focused on research, believing that it will bring India at the cusp of exploration and innovation.