Industry Linked – A Core Principle at NU
Industry Linked - A Core Principle at NU
Since inception, NIIT University’s vision was to offer education that is relevant to 21st century industry needs. Accordingly, being Industry Linked constituted our first and foremost Core Principle. Significant outcomes with noteworthy results have been achieved by the University based on innovative academic linkages built over the last decade and half. Three ideas characterize this linkage:
- 1. Industry is an equal partner in education.
- 2. The linkage must be reciprocal.
- 3. Both partners, NU, and industry, must benefit from the partnership.
The following initiatives have fostered Industry Linkage:
1. Industry Practice (IP): Every Programme has a mandatory credited course, in the last semester of the programme, called Industry Practice (IP). Students are sent to various organizations and get the opportunity to apply their learning to solve real-time industry challenges.
The Industry Mentor (the Student’s Supervisor at the organization), and an assigned Faculty Mentor act as faculty for the IP, directly facilitating the learning process for the student and assessing their performance. A Resident Mentor is also assigned from the NU Team who facilitates collaboration and communication between the student and mentors. During the 6 months of IP, students create value for the industry through their work, as well as gain practical experience and skills that make them job ready. Nearly 80% of organisations make a placement offer to the students during the IP itself. These offers act as significant contributors to our 100% placement rates. Additionally, Faculty Mentors get an opportunity to interact with the Industry Mentors, enabling them to enhance their understanding of industry and latest technologies and trends, and initiate process to improve curriculum and teaching methodology accordingly.
In addition to the IP, students also do shorter Summer Internships during their year-end breaks which helps them better prepare for their future in the industry. Since inception, over 700 organisations have partnered with NU for IP and Summer Internships.
2. Industry Linked Programmes (ILP): Industry requires means to up-skill or re-skill existing workforce to ensure they can keep up with emerging technologies and business needs, and to support their career growth aspirations. Recognising this need, NU offers unique programmes, termed as Industry Linked Programmes, as part of the PG offerings. ILPs offer NU the opportunity to collaborate with Industry and co-create programmes catering to the needs of specific organisations. The curriculum is created by the Industry Partner and Faculty Jointly. The Industry Partner also shares Industry Faculty to partly deliver the programme. Students can do a PG programme with minimal financial investment and are guaranteed placement as a pre-agreed CTC upon completion of the programme. Since the first ILP offered in 2011, 1538 PG Degree or PG Diploma students have benefitted from ILP’s offered by NU in partnership with 9 organisations.
3. Masters and Doctoral Programmes for Working Professionals: NU offers MTech Programme in Educational Technology to working members of industry and academia alike. Courses in the programme have an assignment linked with the actual role of the student in their organisation, thus ensuring that the students create value for their organisation. NU also offers Doctoral Programmes for working professionals wherein the candidates can pursue their research while continuing with their work, thus
offering candidates the flexibility to pursue their academic goals with career goals. The problem statement for research is usually chosen from the candidate’s area of work, thus ensuring that value is created for the employer as well. So far, 7 working professionals have completed their PhD and 16 professionals are currently pursuing their PhD in this manner.
4. Additive Curriculum: Through its pedagogical innovation of Additive Curriculum, NU engages industry in a classroom course as a part of its UG Programmes. A real-time project being executed in industry is assigned in one or more relevant courses to teams of students across years. Students deliver the project requirements as a team and are evaluated for various attributes by the Course Faculty and the Project Manager from industry. This Project-Based Learning methodology enables students to learn to integrate the learning process with business process. Students get a better understanding of the relationship between courses and how real-world problems increasingly demand interdisciplinary knowledge to address them. In AY 2021-22, 72 ET Projects were completed by the 1st and 2nd year UG students.
5. Industry Linked Courses: Audit Courses like Community Connect and Unnat Bharat connect with MSME sector in Neemrana. Students work on small problems requiring scientific and technological solutions. Capstone Project I and II and R&D Project courses also often draw upon industry problems.
6. Invited Talks by Industry Leaders: NU offers a series of invited talks from eminent industry leaders named “Learn from Masters” delivered by experts such as Dr Ganesh Natarajan, Montek Singh Ahluwalia, Dr Soumya Swaminathan, Gurcharan Das, Suveer Chainani etc. Industry Leaders are also invited during the Resonance organised for each batch of students. Students get an opportunity to interact with and learn from industry leaders.
7. Professors of Practice and Visiting Faculty: Practicing Industry professionals routinely serve as Professors of Practice and Visiting Faculty in different programmes. This brings valuable industry experience into the classroom. Industry experts also participate in Curriculum Design as members of various Boards of Studies, thus ensuring that curriculum remains Industry Relevant.
8. Industry Immersion for Teachers: NU has made a small beginning by introducing a scheme of Industry Immersion for members of faculty during their summer vacation. University facilitates and supports them to spend two months in an organization with its industry partners. Teachers get a first-hand exposure to the industry, learn new technologies and identify potential research problems of interest to industry.
In recognition of its efforts, NU has won the award of Best Institution for promoting industry-academia interface at 10th ASSOCHAM Higher Education Summit & National Excellence Awards in 2017. In summary, NIIT University distinctively stands out for its industry linkage, which in qualitative and quantitative terms is the hallmark of NIIT University.