In a quick dialogue Neeta Dagar, Head of Admissions, BML Munjal University (BMU) confides the dilemmas of engineering students in research and career while counseling them on finding solutions to the problems.
What are the attributes a student should have to become a successful engineer?
Without a doubt, engineers are the backbone of the modern industrial world. They are behind all the devices and systems that have become indispensable for societies in this century.
At the same time, an engineer’s goal continues to change and evolve. The discipline in itself has grown by leaps and bounds and includes several sub-specializations. Is the engineering programme you’re studying gearing you for the future or for a career today? That’s an important question to ask.
The key attributes that I feel students who hope and aim to become successful engineers are:
An innate desire to figure things out – These kids will continue to evolve and come up with the next best thing after another.
Strong Analytical Skills – While at its core, engineering employs science, technology, engineering mathematics, (STEM) and design to a particular challenge for engineers of 2020, analytical skills to establish structure, plan, evaluate and align outcomes, are important.
Listening and Problem Solving Skills – To be an effective problem-solver, which engineers need to be to work out solutions, they also need to be good and observant listeners.
Interpersonal and Leadership Skills – Engineers need to spend a lot of time working in teams when working on a project. This only works out successfully when the students are trained to effectively work together to effectively participate in meetings as well as iron out schedules and the like.
How do you think a student should pursue his entrepreneurial ambitions?
Students will learn a variety of different – mostly – technical competences from an engineering programme. Business creation and business development competencies are keys to the global business arena of the future engineer.
A world-class University that creatively combines these technical competencies with business savvy is one where a student can learn to be the successful entrepreneur in order to create new value.
At BMU, we are beginning to see several students starting an entrepreneurial venture taking their ideas to reality – from thought to action right here on campus and it’s good to see all the classes on the art of negotiation, communication, finance, etc., to prove useful.
What are the prospects of research for an engineering graduate?
Engineering students in India have poor awareness about research in their field and they don’t get enough guidance to build careers in research. There is a lack of awareness that lies around areas of the importance of research, how it happens and why it is exciting. A recent study has revealed that less than three in 10 top engineering graduates in India are aware of any international research journal or conference in their field of study.
The number slips to a meager 22% for students beyond the top 50, it has found. Research-oriented discussions being conducted by faculty in classrooms is now essential for engineering graduates to try and take their work and solutions to the next level.
One of BMU’s aim to set up a world-class research and learning environment. At BMU, students spend 45% of their The idea behind setting up several state-of-the-art centers of excellence in association with Shell, Siemens, Intel, IBM, and FraunhoferGesselschaft is that BMU’s students and faculty can carry on all levels of research and work out solutions for the society.
How do you think entering in a government PSU would benefit a student in terms of his engineering career?
An increasing number of PSUs, current figures stand at 50 plus, today use GATE scores to recruit graduate engineers. Some of the prominent PSUs that use GATE scores for recruitment include BHEL, GAIL, NHPC, BSNL, and DMRC. The number of vacancies that are filled in these companies through the PSU recruitment process using GATE scores is huge.
For instance, BSNL hired a record-setting 2,510 GATE candidates last year across India.
According to me, a career at a PSU is still highly sought after for the opportunities it comes with. It’s also one of the most stable one providing fresh engineer graduates a plethora of projects that they can get experience on.
However, most PSUs are slow in implementing new policies and bringing in innovation. So, if a student likes a dynamic environment, it could turn out to be a dampener.
How do you think an engineer benefits the society?
Simply put, an engineer makes life a lot easier and exciting too.
If you think about the world around us –safe and automatic vehicles, smartphones, life-saving medical facilities, food available in stores, clean water, Xbox – everything relies on engineering solutions that make the world a safer and more comfortable and even exciting place to be.
For undergraduate engineering students, BMU provides 4 years of advanced engineering and management learning, providing them with enhanced capabilities in design, analysis, and management of the next-generation of projects that will make a difference to the society and everyone’s standard of life.