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The Vision of GradFirst
 

Boom in the Indian economy has realized that despite high quality technical education and training that is provided at colleges, most graduates fall short of expectations of corporate majors, when it comes to essential technical skills, personal interaction, interviews and discussions. Many students even lack practical knowledge and exposure. This leads young graduates to sharpen soft skills and qualities in respective areas and also brush up their soft skills like communication skills, corporate etiquette and many others through some other informal training. This has resulted in the emergence of schools or training centers which sharpen the soft and technical skills of the graduates, professionals and bridges the gap between

formal education and practical industry practice. The ultimate result of this development is the origin of finishing schools. The Finishing school intends to make good this deficiency and equip technical graduates with the confidence, exuberance and maturity to take up challenges in the industry.

India produces nearly 4,00,000 engineers every year, but only one in four is employable. Lakhs of graduates pass out of colleges every year, but only 10% of them are fit to be employed in the industry. Viewing current trends we see software companies today look for fresh graduates who are trained in industry culture, and are well-versed with soft-skills like communication skills, presentation skills, along with technical knowledge. The students who want to get trained in soft-skills and technical skills now have this option. The ultimate solution to sharpen soft skills of the candidates through informal education is finishing schools. Anything can be learned through finishing schools, it is the mantra for total transformation of attitude. IT companies insist upon their executives’ picking up lessons in various soft skill programs such as customer handling skills, interpersonal communication, international etiquettes and developing leadership skills. The hybrid finishing school fulfills this requirement.

We will convert the erstwhile weakness (population) into an opportunity (again population) by providing various reskilling / upskilling programs to the needy in association with the experts in the respective domains. There has been a great demand for such professionals while the supply is less.

College or university education is based on building foundations and concepts that need to be implemented in the industry. Thus, students graduating from colleges do not have much industry relevant knowledge. There is a glaring gap to provide skilled man power to the industry today and hence we have adopted the power of technology to provide the same. GradFirst has the capability of reaching the length and breadth of the country and breaking demographic barriers – thanks to the powerful technology platform on which it is built. The technology platform known as VEDAS (Virtual Education Delivery and Assessment System) has built-in features to simulate real time class room environment, online content delivery, online self assessment, digital library, online performance analysis and forecasting and many such features that will make the user the best breed in the subject chosen. There are options like Learning path (LP) for performance tracking and Dashboards for performance analysis such as peer review, speed analyzer, rank analyzer and even forecasting the required learning rate versus current rate of learning.

GradFirst provides various dimensions of reskilling or upskilling to the final year graduates in Science, Commerce, Engineering and Management disciplines to make them employable or Job Ready. While it delivers programmes in a manner similar to a physical system, it takes the advantage of spreading across the country without having to invest on fixed assets, faculty and other resources.

The business model is to provide various reskilling or upskilling programmes to fresh graduates passing out from universities, colleges and educational institutions through the Hybrid Finishing School in order to make them “employable” or “self employable” or enable them to transform themselves from being job seekers to job providers. The target is the millions of graduates who have the real energy to make this mission a reality. What is needed is “hand holding”, a mentoring process by which we can make them become “Job Ready”. The business model is to convert the human population into human potential and make them become employable in the areas of their expertise.

Hardly 30% of the schoolchildren who pass out of schools are able to get into professional colleges due to lack of training resources available to prepare themselves for the competitive examinations. Hardly 30% of the graduates who pass out of the colleges are employable or Job Ready. We will bridge the gap by providing the requisite knowledge through GradFirst.

We have developed many programmes for each category of students in science, commerce, engineering and management disciplines and have tied up with prospective employers who are interested in such “processed” or “skilled” graduates. GradFirst plays the role of an enabler in the whole business model.

On a global level, India is known to be the IT destination. Fact remains that only 2.5% of the world’s GDP is attributed to the software industry while the balance 97.5% is attributed to the remaining economy. While Trading and retail is about 1.5 times bigger in size compared to IT, manufacturing is 11 times bigger than IT sector. Compared this to Tourism industry which is 6 times bigger to IT, whereas Health care is about 4 times bigger than IT, not to mention about Education which is 4 times bigger than the core IT sector. This means the employment opportunities are spread everywhere but what is needed is to enhance the “employability quotient” of every individual. This can be done by making them “work smart” by providing the above said, “hand holding”.

 
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