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Business News/ Companies / Integration of AI, tech-centric subjects into curriculum imperative to shape future workforce, says Ajeenkya DY Patil

Integration of AI, tech-centric subjects into curriculum imperative to shape future workforce, says Ajeenkya DY Patil

Dr Ajeenkya DY Patil says the education sector in 2024 is expected to be characterised by technological innovation, global collaboration, personalised learning, and a heightened focus on soft skills and continuous learning.

Ajeenkya DY Patil Group chairman Dr Ajeenkya DY PatilPremium
Ajeenkya DY Patil Group chairman Dr Ajeenkya DY Patil

With artificial Intelligence (AI) and technological disruption transforming the education sector, it is becoming essential to equip students with the right skills. The Ajeenkya DY Patil Group is one of the largest educational groups in the country. Dr DY Patil, a Padma Sree awardee, founded it in 1983. It has over 200 Institutes of learning along with five universities‚ based out of Navi Mumbai‚ Pune and Kolhapur. In an exclusive interaction with LiveMint, the group's current chairman, Dr Ajeenkya DY Patil, shared insights on strategic skill development and how international competitions like ‘Young Chef Young Waiter’ (WYCYW) can prepare the next generation to thrive in this transformed workforce. Edited excerpts from the interaction. 

Q. In the rapidly evolving education sector, what are your expectations for 2024?

Dr. Ajeenkya DY Patil: In 2024, the education sector is expected to continue its rapid evolution, driven by technological advancements, changing societal needs, and lessons learned from global events like the COVID-19 pandemic. The use of artificial intelligence (AI), virtual reality (VR), and augmented reality (AR) is expected to enhance learning experiences, making education more interactive, engaging, and tailored to individual needs.

The education sector in 2024 is expected to be characterised by technological innovation, global collaboration, personalised learning, and a heightened focus on soft skills and continuous learning. While these trends offer exciting possibilities, the actual developments will depend on various factors, including technological advancements, societal needs, and the ability of educational institutions to adapt to change.

Q. With the increasing importance of tech and AI skills in today's job market, how do you envision the integration of skill development education?

A: A strategic and comprehensive approach to skill development in education is crucial to ensure students are well-prepared for the demands of the future workforce. The integration of skill development education for students should be proactive, starting from the early years and progressing through all levels of education. 

A combination of foundational skills, practical application, interdisciplinary learning, real-world exposure, and a commitment to lifelong learning will collectively prepare students to thrive in the technology-driven workforce of the future. This approach not only equips students with the necessary technical skills but also instils the adaptability and resilience needed to navigate the dynamic landscape of the modern job market.

A. The education industry in India has undergone significant changes. How do you perceive this shift and its impact on the overall quality of education?

A: A noteworthy change is the heightened emphasis on digital learning and the seamless integration of technology within the education sector. The advent of online platforms has empowered educational institutions to harness digital tools, elevating the learning experience. This paradigm shift has democratised access to education, dismantling geographical barriers and endowing students with a myriad of resources.

Furthermore, a noticeable transformation is evident in assessment and evaluation methods. Also, urgent attention is needed to address socio-economic disparities in access to quality education, ensuring that the benefits of these transformative changes are accessible to all segments of society.

The integration of technology, coupled with policy reforms and a shift towards holistic learning approaches, has collectively contributed to an enhanced quality of education.

Q. How do you think events like 'Young Chef Young Waiter' can help the hospitality industry and aspiring hospitality students in India?

A: Global competitions like 'Young Chef Young Waiter' play a pivotal role in shaping the future of the hospitality industry at large and nurturing the aspirations of students pursuing careers in this field.

It provides a platform for aspiring hospitality students to showcase their talent and creativity, create opportunities for networking and mentorship, contribute to raising the overall standards of excellence in the hospitality sector, act as a talent pool, and bridge the gap between education and industry in the hospitality sector.

Q. How do you see post-COVID era change impacting students' approach to education, career choices, and personal development in the long run?

A: With the rise of remote learning, students have become more adaptable and tech-savvy, valuing flexibility and self-directed learning. This experience may foster an increased emphasis on skills acquisition over traditional credentials.

The pandemic has heightened awareness of the importance of job security and the adaptability of professions to unforeseen circumstances. The pandemic emphasised mental health, prompting students to prioritise a balanced lifestyle, self-care, and emotional resilience.

Q. How do you perceive the stability of careers in the hospitality sector, and what strategies would you recommend to ensure an adaptable workforce for the future?

A: The stability of careers in the hospitality sector has been significantly impacted by external factors such as the COVID-19 pandemic, economic fluctuations, and changing consumer behaviours.

Continuous training, adaptability, diversification of skills, technology integration, collaboration with educational institutions, and prioritising employee well-being collectively contribute to building a resilient and adaptable workforce in the hospitality industry.

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Published: 20 Feb 2024, 05:53 PM IST
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