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In 3 Yrs, Over 60% Seats Lie Vacant For ME/MTech Courses In Maharashtra: Report

Lack of job opportunities in the field, and absence of curriculum updates are primary reasons for the decline. The number seems to be declining for the academic year 2021-22, with 70 per cent of seats lying vacant.

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Maharashtra has witnessed the closure of several engineering institutes over the last few years due to a fall in demand.

The engineering field is witnessing a reversal trend in the state, as the number of students opting for the course is reducing. According to a recent report, the seat vacancy in Masters of Engineering (ME/MTech) has remained between 60 - 65 per cent in the last three years.

Decline In Enrollment

This year, the enrollment number of BE/BTech stood high at 1.39 lakh, while the total intake for ME/MTech saw a massive decline, with 13,095 enrollment, which is less than 10 percent of the total seats in the undergraduate course.

For the academic year 2021-22, seven out of ten seats lie vacant, which accounts for 70 per cent. The figures were revealed by the state common entrance test cell (CET).

Reason For Downfall

Lack of job opportunities in the field and absence of curriculum updates are primary reasons for the decline, Hindustan Times reported.

The Director of a Mumbai-based institute said that the students are disheartened, realising that the skill set they acquired for years remains almost the same compared to the undergraduate courses even after qualifying for a higher degree.

Most of the students opting for ME/MTech are the ones who wish to pursue teaching in future. But that might also see a fall, as the engineering institutes have stagnated and therefore, hiring new teachers has also reduced over the years.

Companies' Dynamics

Former chairman of the All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE), SS Mantha, said that the hiring process also remained one of the reasons for the downfall. As per the AICTE data, ME/MTech placement stood at 24.27 per cent of the total enrollment in 2020-21.

Reportedly, companies prefer a BTech graduate over an MTech graduate because of their similar tech skills. The companies have realised that the skills acquired in both courses are almost similar.

Besides, an undergraduate agrees to work for a lesser salary than a postgraduate. Reportedly, employers have stopped mentioning ME/MTech as an eligibility criterion in job descriptions.

Students Switching To Business Course

The Director said that students are focusing on attaining work experience and applying to a B-school for a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) program. The shift is primarily to update their skillset and attract better job opportunities.

The firms are seeking addon skills in a postgraduate; hence, students pursue MBA or other financial courses.

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Writer : Devyani Madaik
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Editor : Shiva Chaudhary
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Creatives : Devyani Madaik