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In a conversation with Shiksha.com, Principal at SRM Easwari Engineering College, Chennai Dr R S Kumar talk in detail about their curriculum design and practices to help students become industry-ready. SRM Easwari Engineering College has industry-embedded curriculum and student-driven culture that helps the faculty experiment with initiatives to drive quality placements for the students.
Read the edited excerpt of the conversation below:

Q: What are the three things that your institute is doing that will enable it to differentiate itself from the competition?

A: For any institute, its pedagogy and placements play an important role in differentiating it from other institutes offering the same course. Where the curriculum remains more or less the same in all the institutes, what matters is the delivery of the content and value addition to it.

As an autonomous institute, we have industry-embedded curriculum and students driven culture. We offer opportunities for industry learning, online courses and semester abroad programmes to facilitate practical exposure to students. If they practice what they learn, they will improvise in themselves.
In context to placements, we are known for our proven track record of quality placements. In the last placements season, we have successfully placed 99 percent students with reputed corporates.
Also, through various design, gaming competitions and live projects, we aim to increase students involvement in activity-based learning and experiential learning

Q: What are the initiatives undertaken by you that are helping your students become more industry ready?

A: As we focus more on facilitating practical exposure to students, we have set our students free to undergo two weeks / four weeks or six weeks of internship with industries. They learn, practice and improve. This way they also get to experience the corporate culture and get the understanding of what today’s world expects out of them.

Students who undergo six weeks of internship programme can choose to drop one professional elective from their curriculum.

Q: What are the key attributes that a student should have in order to qualify for your institution

Get top grades in your institution
A: We are always in search of students who have the zeal to learn Engineering and make a career out of it. Looking at the current situation, we can say that the world will now move towards digitilisation at even fast pace. It also means more job opportunities in the areas of engineering. Hence, we are ready to offer more skilled and trained professionals to the industry for a better tomorrow.

We are an autonomous, self-financed college affiliated to Anna University. About 50 percent of the strength is admitted through a single-window system managed by DOTE (Directorate of Technical Education) and the balances 50 percent of the seats are filled through Management Quota.

More than getting top grades in the curriculum, it’s important for the student to have a clear understanding of the concepts. It is only possible if the student has a passion to learn and innovate. We as an institute offer all possible resources to students in the form of e-resources, access to online courses for value addition, scholar papers, etc. so they learn more and practice more. If so happens, securing good grades in the curriculum is not a difficult task to achieve.

Q: Which programme/s would you say is/are your best? What is it that helps your institution differentiate itself for this programme?

A: It is difficult to say which one programme is the best because all our programmes are at par with the industry standards. And, we keep updating the curriculum basis the suggestions from industry experts.

Looking at the emerging demand of Data Science, Artificial Intelligence and Robotics skilled professionals, we have recently launched three new courses in

BE in Robotics and Automation
BE in Biomedical Engineering
BTech in Artificial Intelligence and Data Science.
We aim to accomplish and maintain the international eminence and become a model institution for higher learning through dedicated development of minds, the advancement of knowledge and professional application of skills to meet the global demands.

Q: What are you doing to drive better campus placements for your current students and alumni?

A: Students’ performance can be evaluated on the basis of their performance in the curriculum, the educational institution’s performance can be evaluated on the basis of quality placement opportunities it brings to the students. We have a dedicated placements cell that works throughout the year to strengthen corporate relationships. Apart from that we also keep organising regular seminars and workshops on personality development. We offer:

Company-specific training
Prepare students through Mock Interview sessions
Product development company-specific training
Online coding and programming practice
Webinars, Industrial visit and workshop
Periodical assessment in both aptitude & technical