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Bridging the Gap between Industry and Academia

Many factors hamper the cycle of economic growth and development which effect the overall business growth in the country. The widening comprehensive collaboration between academic programs and the industry in various countries is troublesome. Today’s world is concerned about how to facilitate a smooth flow between universities and the industries requirements.

The increase in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) measures the economic growth of a country but in Pakistan, it is being faced with energy crises, bad governance, financial instability, corruption, inflation and terrorism. Our GDP has plummeted to a low equilibrium because of an important factor and that is this disturbed connection between industry and academia. The practical application of the academic intelligence somehow seems to fail both in the public and private sector.

Curriculum Development:

Over the past couple of years, the numbers of universities have no doubt increased in our country. Better programs have been introduced which offer diverse range of subjects to the students but most of these subjects are mismatched and irrelevant when it comes to practical implication in the real world. Also, the practical inferences become more impossible to the local business sector as the books that are being taught to the students are written by foreign authors.

The development and prosperity of youth:

In November 2009, the New York Times stated a British Council Report that said

“Pakistan will face a ‘demographic disaster’ if it does not address the requirements of its young generation, the largest in the country’s history, whose views reflect a deep disillusionment with the government and democracy”.

The education system/learning can be improved to compete with the outside world. typical old school of thought learning’s fails to explore the potentials of youth which if properly harnessed can bring a socio-economic revolution in our country. Unfortunately, youth issues and ideas have never been addressed properly and have resulted in a nightmare in the form of talented youth fleeing from the country resulting in a “Brain Drain”. Those who are unable to shift abroad, are faced with challenges of high cost of studies, joblessness, lack of guidance and career counseling from experienced fellows to survive in the country. The standards of universities in the public sector are on the decline and students are not provided with platforms to assess job markets. Whereas, private universities are not affordable by the masses but they have established platforms that organize job fairs and provide opportunities for employment in the business market.

Despite the emergence of more and more universities in the public and private sector, our country is unable to produce a skilled labor force that is required in the fields of mechanics, construction, automobiles and marketing. The authorities are unable to cater appropriately to certain important factors for the young generation which is contributing a lot in widening industry-academia gap.

Freelancing and Entrepreneurship:

The cameo appearance of freelancing and entrepreneurship in our society has changed the labor market dramatically over the past couple of years. Information technology has provided a lifeline to the young generation and now the consideration of the word “job” has changed for them. They are embracing new methods of employment as a means of generating income and are making a better living for themselves by doing what they love. The technological platforms allow them to share their knowledge on marketing, business, art, music and mentoring and many other topics and they are not limited just to their relatives and neighbors. The entire world is open to them for marketing as unique opportunities await them in new professions and areas.

In Pakistan, there is a need to improve the standards of education and prepare students to meet the real challenges in their corporate lives. Freelancing has reduced financial constraints for the youth to become self-employed therefore more and more students are entering this field. Freelancing plays an important role in promoting the entrepreneurial performance and facilitates the startups to enter the market. The state needs to develop the academic sector by incorporating freelancing and entrepreneurship as a subject in universities to meet present challenges and bridge the gap between academia and industry.

 

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Written by Hisham Sarwar

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OAi5HVJbixQ

That is all you ever need to know about me but let me warn you, freelancing for me is a journey, certainly not a destination :)