As everyone is barely getting by, the student needs a helping hand especially from their universities. The IT cells of every college needs to step up and call out corporates to get their students placed and abide by the previously offered job offers.
As we enter Day 62 of the lockdown, there seems to be no way out of this clampdown. While everyone seems to be worst hit by the lockdown, the freshly graduated class of 2020 looks ahead at a bleak future. With an online farewell ceremony they have been thrusted barefoot into the job market, which itself is going through a restructuring of its own due to the forthcoming recession. According to a recent report by the international management consulting firm Arthur D Little, up to 135 million jobs could be lost and 120 million people might be pushed into poverty in India, source Business Standard. With the economy at a standstill, companies are fearful of investments and expansions, putting the students in a tough spot.
We are looking at lay offs in large numbers with some companies already shedding the weight including Uber Technologies, Lyft among others. While experienced employees are being laid off, it is difficult to find space for freshly graduated students with bare minimum work experience. According to Rise, Food delivery platform Swiggy recently announced plans to lay off 1,100 employees spanning across grades and functions in the cities and head office over the next few days as COVID-19 continues to hurt its business.
IT cells of various colleges including IIT Delhi, BHU have been going back and forth, contacting their recruiters to not rescind job and internship offers. Even the HRD ministry requested the companies to not withdraw job offers made to students due to economic slowdown. The Jamia Placement Cell has been organising webinars to sensitize students about the upcoming challenges. A webinar titled, “Preparing for changing jobs post COVID-19” was scheduled on 21st May with eminent speakers like Mr. Ashok Gupta Vice Chairman, Shalimar Paints Ltd, lined up to speak about the changing job market. While this may all look like solid efforts but strategies to cope in the new job market are redundant if there are no jobs to fight for. The Jamia Placement Cell like other placement cells of various universities should rise up to the challenge and start contacting companies or even alumni, hoping to create space for its students in the dwindling job market.
Recent surveys suggest that despite the falling economy, there will be a demand for tech jobs, Jamia has a brilliant engineering department, the students at par with latest technology. Recently a team of BTech students from JMI got a government patent for their invention, which shows inquisitiveness of Jamia students. At trying times like this, the university should not shy away from showcasing the talents of their students and demand job security for its brilliant students who have adapted to trying circumstances.
The frequency of companies visiting JMI for placements was already less owing to the December 15 fiasco, the students faced police brutality and the university faced polarising views, which brought a lot of bad light to the students. Few companies like White Panda, Wipro (for disabled students only), Byju’s conducted placements virtually amidst the lockdown. With only few companies on shelves the students are grappling in the job market with ever lesser leverage on their end. The university needs to help create better opportunities for the students that will carry its name for life, even after the economy bounces back.
We reached out to BTech placement coordinator for further information. He said, “The placement cell has started their digital/online placement drive in the month of May. We are inviting companies for on campus placements. We are conducting webinars for students as to how they can tackle this situation and can land up a job in a good reputed firm. While we have seen in other colleges that companies are revoking the campus offers of students this has not been a case here. Not a single offer has been revoked here. Companies like BYJUs, NIIT, WakenCode, BloomBrain, Optum-UnitedHealth Group, HireTek, Datamark,Chegg India, Eleation, Secon, RTDS have shown interest and conducted their pre placement talk.“
“Webinars on topic like How to Ace virtual interviews, Preparing for jobs post COVID-19 have been organized and industry experts have been the guest on these webinars.” He further added commenting on the uncertainty of the situation by saying, “I can’t say much about what will be the scenario after COVID as I am also a student and don’t know much as to how much it is going to hamper the campus placements.”
Rutba Iqbal is a student pursuing English Honors from Jamia Millia Islamia.
edited by: Maryam Ahmed
The opinions expressed in this publication are those of the author. They do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of The Jamia Review or its members.