The reality of CSE in Private colleges of India

12 April 2020 — Written by JU eezy
#deepdive🤿#talk

 Introduction

The technical education system of CSE in private colleges is very bad. The colleges have opened just to run a business. They are not creating actual Computer Science Engineers. Majority of students end up getting placed in Service based jobs which stops their mental growth. These students do not get jobs CSE students deserve.

Now this problem has been prevailing since a long time now. Situation may have changed a bit but leaving it as is and hoping for better tomorrow will take a lot of time. Just think about the massive intake of these colleges. They do not give true Engineers as output. Many people have talked about this problem earlier. Some may have even taken actions to overcome this problem. But due to the massive scale and lot of authorities involved, solving this at once is rather impossible or time consuming.

What we can do is, take small initiatives to solve this problem. We have come up with a solution. But first we have to get into the context of this problem. We'll be sharing the solution at the end.

Deeper dive

Let's start with a quick fact that the founders of most of the tech giants today had an amazing CS environment around them. Larry Page, Sergey Brin, Bill Gates are some examples. In fact, some of their parents were CS professors. In short, the environment plays a major role in deciding the career of a student. In India, students of Tier 1 & 2 colleges have a strong Alumni background, support from Seniors, Quality education, experienced faculties all of which help students find their career path in CS. Whether it be landing in their dream job or becoming an entrepreneur. They have a great coding ecosystem and properly functioning communities that lay a foundation of true Engineers for the society. Students give JEE (or any other Engineering entrance exam) to get into good colleges. Those who excel get into IITs or other prestigious institutes. These institutes are established ones, they have experienced faculties, good industrial connections and Alumni pursuing careers in CS.

But this is just the tip of the iceberg. Consider this analogy : Do you know how many taxpayers are there in our country who play a major role in running this country? Roughly half of the population earns and among them 32% pays tax. Or 16% of the population pays tax. Similarly, only 10% of total CSE graduates are fit for coding jobs. What about the rest? Due to an unfit environment and hence huge demand-supply gap, 90% of these graduates were not able to explore CS in it's best form. They could have become potential problem solvers. These students could have become real engineers, job creators and not job seekers. Sadly, this didn't happen.

Expectations from Engineering education

The aim was to create problem solvers, researchers, entrepreneurs and skillful youth who would rather be job creators. They must have been able to apply their skills to solve modern problems. Engineering was always all about solving problems! They must have been aware of industry demands and new technologies and how to apply them. And most important of all they must be able to code. The number of unemployable and unskilled Engineers would have been negligible.

Root cause of this problem

Most of the colleges lie below 2nd Tier. Here the situation is completely different. These colleges fail at nurturing true Engineering talent. Problem Solving attitude has not been imparted yet. There is no coding culture, no community, no CS alumni, no seniors are there to guide. Infact faculties don't have coding experience.

To pursue a career in CS, one need not master PCM (Physics, Chemistry & Mathematics). But those who fail to crack JEE (Joint Entrance Examination - Entrance exam for Engineering colleges) then join private colleges that lack a productive environment where they can enhance their CS skills. Even they don't get to know the big picture of CS. They just follow the Hit & Trial method to explore CS. This often leads to stress, insecurity and regret of choosing CS. Many even sacrifice their life for the same. So, this problem needs to be solved.

Students mistake B. Tech CSE with BCA. The placements offered in the end are of service oriented jobs which have no correlation with Engineering or what was in the curriculum. Due to this bad environment, students fail at gaining development, coding and problem solving skills. They often get on a wrong track due to lack of guidance.

Why Solve this problem ?

Benefits of solving this problem :

  • Maximum number of employable and skillful CS Engineers will be nurtured
  • Due to strong CS foundation, students will be able to work on strong and successful technical startups. Hence, boosting Indian economy
  • Students will get what they deserve
  • Many suicides due to regret of choosing CSE can be stopped
  • The money earned by hard-work of several parents will not go wasted

This problem occurred in its first place due to colleges below 2nd tier not paying attention towards Product based company placements. They take fees of B. Tech and prepare them for BCA jobs. Many parents' hard-work is getting into the wrong hands. So, this is a crime that needs to be stopped.

The Solution

Below are some role wise customised initiatives one can take to solve this problem

Technology experts (GDE, MVP, employees, industry leaders)

As you are an expert in some domain, you must be having your inspiring story worth sharing. You can work along with the Developer relation team to conduct in-person boot camps for such students where problem solving is taught first, with the help of examples. Specifically curated study material can be created for these students.

Note that this has to be done just once. Once a community is built and we have true leaders, this problem will then be solved in an exponential manner. Just a spark is needed.

Developer Relation teams

The following is intended for people responsible for monitoring developer relation programs like DSC, GDG, GDE, MSP, etc. We understand and appreciate the efforts of tech giants to start such amazing programs. As you know, the aim of these programs was to promote problem solving attitude, community building, helping each other and sharing knowledge. They were intended to bridge the gap between theory and practical. But the catch here is that colleges where these programs are just started, often fail at understanding these programs in the first place. They fail at community building. Let me give an example of my own college, where DSC started just to organize events, briefing about tech and not mastering them. Students don't sit together to solve challenging problems nearby. Not only this, they even think that merely collecting course completion certificates and incentives will help them improve their CV. Also, people often misuse incentives for trading. We have seen students developing useless Google Actions just to get a Google Home. Not only this, they ordered for peers too. Massive misuse of developer programs!!!

Certificates that prove implementation of skill : In this competitive world, how can one distinguish between one with actual skills and the other just pretending, both holding certificates of course completion? We strongly believe that there must be a certificate that actually proves one's ability to implement those skills. Course completion and implementation of skills acquired are completely different things. See it's like learning some new language and not speaking it! People with problem solving skills and ability to make a difference, make a positive impact must get these special certificates. Hence, these programs need to be monitored properly. We have to make sure only good people become leaders and they actually solve problems and promote community growth. Note that these conclusions are not just made up but drawn from careful observations in surroundings.

CSSI for India : The environment in colleges below 2nd tier is very disturbed. There is lack of experienced faculties, seniors and alumni. So, a person is never given a big picture of what careers are there in CS, the different paths one can follow. In foreign, Google has a CSSI program. Why can't it be introduced in India as well? It is very much needed in these colleges.

Awareness about programs : Last but not the least, students are often aware of amazing programs like Google's Build for Digital India, Explore ML, Imagine cup and DSC Solution Challenge. Even DSCs do not promote such events. Students don't even know about career opportunities like STEP Internship. These opportunities must be acknowledged to as many students as possible to give a fair chance to everyone for career advancements.

Student exchange programs : A new program can be introduced wherein students of the local community visit other colleges to collaborate and build community there.

Note that all this has to be done just once. Once a community is built and we have true leaders, this problem will then be solved in an exponential manner. Just a spark is needed.

Seniors in colleges who are good in CS

Einstein said "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough." If you are really good at something, you must try to share it to as many people as you can. Inspire others, have a greater impact on others. There are students who need help from people like you. Try writing your B.Tech experience, mistakes to be avoided, events worth attending and a lot more.

Seniors experiencing this problem

This is intended for students who are badly struck by this bad education system, who never got to learn how to code and what CS is all about.

Before giving up on CSE, I humbly request you to please try once more. Try a bit harder this time. Coding is an important part of today's technical world. And it is not me who is saying this.

Just visit code.org and watch this

video to see how much willingness people have to help people for promoting coding culture. If you are willing to take a Service oriented job, please think once again, how long will it satisfy your needs? Would you be able to sustain in this competitive world without having true CS skills? Think again!! Please grab a skill and show how useful you can be to the world. Apply those skills and solve problems. That's what Engineering is! The Internet is full of free resources to help you learn how to code. You just need persistence and determination to conquer this world. Go out and see how code can change your and others life. CS is truly amazing. Go explore and build your world!!!

Freshers / Juniors about to experience this problem

You are completely new to this world. Unless already told by your relatives or seniors, you may be lacking direction. We want you to carefully understand following points:

  • Faculties, College exams and College isn't going to help you get into Product based companies
  • You have to make extra efforts and make your way
  • Take as much help you can from Google. Just search wherever you find difficulty. There are many out there who want to help.
  • Focus on problem solving skills. During your course, grab a development skill like Actions on Google / Android / iOS / web / Flutter / React app development and develop something usable
  • Don't even think of neglecting core CS subjects. They are the Crux of CSE. Try taking an online GATE course or read books to clear all the concepts.
  • Follow (or find first) your passion in CS. What makes you feel happy. Go for it work hard, use up all your energy in right direction and I promise you it will definitely get you somewhere you will love
  • Focus on implementation and project based learning
  • Ask out, create community, discuss in groups, figure out ways to use these amazing technologies to solve problems
  • Participate in events and see where you stand
  • DSA!! Just be strong at this and practice a lot on online coding platforms
  • We have prepared a list of some of the best & FREE resources to learn from. (List coming soon...)

Students planning to take B. Tech CSE

If you have cracked JEE and have found your way to dream institute, you are good to go. We wish you good luck. Happy CSE! But if you haven't cracked JEE, you have two options :

  1. Keep trying until you crack JEE
  2. Go with normal private college and prepare for GATE

First option is not for you if you hate PCM. So, you will have to go through this harsh reality and work hard to find your way. Otherwise try and get into IIT to get a quality education and competitive environment.

All CSE students

Without collaborating, nothing can happen. None of the initiatives mentioned above could make sense without a team and community. Prestigious colleges are where they are today due to their communities. A team requires people with actual skills, who can apply skills to solve problems. But in CSE, most of the skills require that students know how to code. And these colleges are not even able to teach coding well. Many students struggle finding the best DSA course just for the sake of competitive programming and landing up in tech giants.

Don't be a programmer, be a problem solver! Also try to step out of online judge and see that the world around you is full of problems. Use technologies along with code to solve problems. Challenge your imagination to make this world a better place. As Microsoft says "Code. Build and Share". Solve problems and share your stories with fellow students to promote problem solving culture. Then only things will change.

Made with 💖 by Yashraj Mishra