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Sunday, May 12, 2013

Just 2% of India’s youth have vocational training

   Here is a pointer to why industry groans about the lack of skilled manpower. Just 2% of India's youth and only about 7% of the whole working age population have received vocational training, a recently released survey report reveals.
   As in the past, hereditary learning or learning on the job continue to generate more skills than the whole formal vocational training set up of the country which includes 8,800 ITI's and 450 polytechnics. Hereditary learning — carrying on the family's trade like farming or pottery making — is the source of needed skills for 1.8% while learning on the job teaches 1.7% of the people between 15 and 59 years of age. In this age group, only 1.6% persons had got formal vocational training.
   These shocking details emerge from a report of the survey carried out by the National Sample Survey Organisation (NSSO) in 2009-10. The survey covered 4.6 lakh persons. What is the quality of vocational education? How far does it go in getting jobs? Surveying persons who had received or were receiving formal vocational training the report found an astonishing disconnect.
   Over 65% of rural laborers working at construction sites or agricultural fields had training in mechanical or electrical engineering, or computer skills. Nearly 58% of clerks had got computer related diplomas. Over 57% of urban women who had trained as beauticians or hairdressers ended up as marketing agents or personal service workers.
   In some cases the natural connect between training and job was evident: 65% of drivers had been trained in driving schools; 64% of building, metal and precision work related workers had training in mechanical, electrical or civil engineering.
   But the most telling statistic in the survey was related to unemployment and being "not in labor force" (mostly women). Nearly 60% of those who had done textile related vocational courses and 57% of those who had trained to become beauticians were no longer in the workforce. Childcare and nutrition (31%) and creative arts (38%) were other traditional women-centric courses that reported a very high disconnect with the job market.
   Surprisingly, unemployment was highest among all trades – nearly 14% — in the courses related to computer skills and repair. Those having diplomas in computers and yet not being in the workforce were also reported at a very high proportion – 44%.
   Overall about 8% of the trained persons were unemployed and another 33% were not in the work force. This was, of course, sharply different for men and women. Over 56% of trained women were reported as not being in the work force as opposed to 20% of men. About 12% of women and 7% of men were unemployed.


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