Is Skill More Important Than a Degree?

Education, whether it is traditional or modern, has the same objective i.e. of making a student ready to face the future with confidence. But what is the best medium to impart the education has always been a debatable question. With some saying the traditional ways have proven themselves for years and thus are undoubtedly the best, there are another group of people who believe that the education system needs to change, for it to be future-ready. What is the truth and is there a way both can be combined?

The gap between career and degree

Traditional education is all about concentrating on a single subject or field that you are passionate about and helps you earn the specialisation in the desired discipline. The primary objective of traditional education is to help you receive a degree. Career on the other hand, nowadays, is becoming more fast-paced and requires a complex skill set that would complement someone’s profile. So, the gap between career and degree has widened with increasing competition amongst job seekers.

Job opportunities have become limited as almost everyone holds a degree and you can see hundreds of applications for a single job opening on any job portal. But most of the applicants lack the requisite skills other than what they have been taught at schools/colleges. So, there is an immediate need for bridging the gap between degree and career.

The middle route: Career-oriented education

One should not confuse career-oriented education for vocational education as there is a huge difference between the two. Vocational education is specifically designed so that a student gets specialisation in a particular job while career-oriented education aims to make the students learn skills that will complement their degrees. Thus, career-oriented education provides the best of both traditional and modern education in a complete, fool-proof package.

We believe the amalgamation of traditional and modern education is not that complex. It just needs good planning to make a course such that it does not put the burden on the students. And not only makes it easier for students to pursue their passion but at the same time gather skills important for their future/career along with their regular studies.

IT Skills training and exposure to subject-specific technology

Information technology is playing an important role nowadays everywhere; how we communicate, collaborate and create is somewhere somehow touched by IT. So it is very important to have IT skills. Nowadays most companies want their employees to have the basic IT knowledge so they can do their work effectively. Starting these early on is going to help the students a lot and let them know how technology is shaping their field of study i.e. how the subject that they are seeking a degree in is specifically touched by the technology.

Leadership skills training

Today’s students are the leaders of tomorrow. We often hear this saying, but do the educational establishments prepare their students in this direction? A very few even look into this direction. Remember, here we aren’t talking about political leaderships that many higher-educational institutions have. The context of leadership here is entirely different and is about showing the students ‘how to take initiative,’ ‘how to make decisions, and’ ‘how to stand by the decision that will affect others.’

Communication skills with social and emotional learning

Communication is an important aspect of human existence, it is our ability to communicate well with each other that distinguishes us from the other beings on the planet. However, these days, people believe the importance of great communication is in most cases masked by someone’s grades and subject knowledge. People get so busy getting better grades that they do not feel the need for communication skills at all. Communication skills do not just include the ability to speak articulately, but also about making the social connection and being empathetic to others. It also includes interacting with the others clearly without any misinterpretation by them. It additionally includes emotional interaction – How another’s emotions are affected by having a conversation with you.

Fragmented course

By fragmenting a course syllabus, the students will be able to choose the subjects they are passionate about and will help them to concentrate on a specific career path. It also helps to ease the burden of learning everything even if it might not be of importance for the students in the career they are interested in. ICSE board, I personally believe, does it best for the school students – it gives them enough options to choose from and mould their learning in the right direction for the career they want to opt for.

In conclusion, we want to urge the educators nationwide to know the benefits of closing this huge gap between skill & degrees. And focus on delivering education via a flexible system that can easily accommodate the need of the hour. Education should no longer be thought as just the process of earning a degree, but should be seen as holistic skills development of an individual for a better tomorrow.

 

 


How to be Great at Making Friends

Who doesn’t like to have a good set of friends to bank upon? Although making good friends is a herculean task in itself, but once done, it definitely worth the efforts. It’s friends who make our life enjoyable and make it more worthwhile. It’s them who spoil us with all the love and care, walk us through all the thick and thins of life, and brings us back on track by being the worst of critics for our deeds. Do you think it is not your cup of tea to initiate friendship? Or do you rely on the other person to extend the hand of friendship? We have a great news, you can make friends at any stage of your life and making friends is a social skill that can be honed over a period of time and with a little practice.

We’ll share with you some handy tips in this post that will help you choose the right friends in no time. So, sit back, be positive and enjoy reading

  • Go Ahead and Do It

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A lot of us do not go ahead and talk to people we like, just because we are scared of doing so. We are scared of our image in front of others, we are scared of how to carry the conversation, and we are scared of everything around it. The more skeptical you are, the more hesitant you become. The best way to break this never ending circle is to overcome your fears and go ahead and do the things rather than just thinking over it. So, next time you feel like having a cup of coffee with an acquaintance, don’t think over it too much – invite him/her over and you never know this might be the beginning of a great bond of friendship between you two.

  • Don’t Fake it, Be Original- Be Yourself

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There cannot be anything better than being chirpy and a go-getter when you are looking forward to making new friends, however a word of caution to keep in mind – You don’t have to fake something that you are not. You won’t want your newly formed friends to realize that you were faking being you all the time and eventually end up repelling your company. Being original and following what you really like is as equally important as avoiding being pretentious. Following what you love doing, gives you an opportunity to interact with like-minded people and there are greater chances of you making friends with them. Don’t think too much, just join the guitar classes you were holding back for a while, who knows you might make some really good friends over your guitar lessons.

  • Put in Efforts to Know the Person Well

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Friendship is not just about you, it is equally about the other person. Try to know the person well. Ask his/her likes and dislikes; know about their routine; help them with suggestions whenever asked for and so on. Also, if you have the acquaintance, grow it to friendship by constantly keeping in touch, hanging out together wherever possible and inviting them to events organized for friends by you. Don’t wait for the other person to approach you for befriending. Be proactive, if you think you two can make good friends, go ahead and talk, take the first step and a few subsequent ones too, if required. Don’t worry too much about being perceived as needy or being frowned at, take it in right spirits and with an attitude that you’ll not leave any stone unturned in your efforts to make some good friends.

  • Be Open, Don’t Judge & Don’t Take it Personally

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To make friends, always put your positive foot ahead and open up your heart. With open heart comes love, faith, trust and acceptance of the other person. Remember your positive attitude is the first step towards making the connection that will slowly and gradually develop into a strong & genuine relationship. It is very human to have some preconceived notions about strangers or acquaintances, but don’t let be too strong or it’ll hamper your chances of seeing the friendship bloom between you two. Judging a person based on what he/she is wearing, how he/she is conversing or what are his/her qualification would only narrow your scope of making and keeping good friends – Say a complete No! Also, it is very important to have faith in yourself and a feeling of ‘let it go’ if the person you want to be friends with is a little nonchalant about you – Don’t take it too personally, he/she might be genuinely busy with something else more important.

  • Be Cheerful, Smile More Often

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It is a proven fact that smile on your face adds more beauty and charm to your persona. Smile not only makes you happier person to look at, but also makes you more approachable for others. Smile more often and we are sure you’ll attract more people to be friends with you. Did you know, people who smile often are considered kinder, attractive and happier and thus have more chances of making friends in fewer attempts? Smile has a ripple effect, if you smile and spread the joy, you are more likely to receive even greater joy from others and increase your chances of finding good friends in them. If you are stressed out, it is more likely that you’ll not be able to reflect your true self in front of others. Take a few deep breaths and grin ear-to-ear once – You’ll surely feel de-stressed and now you are in much better mood to give yourself a fresh chance to make friends.

Always remember – you are great, smile more often and keep yourself open to others and the whole world is waiting to be your friends. Give it a try!!

Image Courtesy- Google Images