Several private colleges have decided to scrap courses in the newer branches of engineering, such as information technology, because of lack of demand and start courses in the core areas, such as civil engineering.
Four colleges — Dream Institute of Technology, Kanad Institute of Technology, IMPS College of Engineering, Sanaka Educational Trust Group of Institutions — have sought the state government’s permission to discontinue courses in the newer disciplines or reduce the number of seats in such courses and start core engineering courses, said an official in the higher education department.
The official added six other colleges were in the process of making similar applications. There are more than 90 engineering colleges in Bengal.
Debashish Sarkar, director, Dream Institute of Technology, confirmed that the college had applied for closure of the applied electronics and instrumentation engineering course, which has 60 seats.
“Only about 10 students enrolled for the course in each of the past three years. In comparison, the mechanical engineering course we started last year with the same seat capacity attracted 50 students. The belief that core engineering offers better job prospects is prompting students to turn away from newer streams,” said Sarkar.
Kanad Institute of Technology, which has applied for the closure of the electrical and electronics engineering, and information technology courses with 60 seats each, wants to offer mechanical and civil engineering from the coming academic session, said a senior college official.
Sanaka Educational Trust Group of Institutions, which has applied to log out of its information technology departments, is also keen on offering more core engineering courses.
Metro had earlier reported that about 12,000 of the approximately 32,000 engineering seats in Bengal (a majority of them in IT, applied electronics and instrumentation engineering, and electronics and communication engineering courses) had remained vacant in the last few years. At least three private tech colleges did not have a single admission last year.
“A core engineering course gives a student more options while looking for a job. Many recruiters feel a wider perspective in engineering helps make a sharper IT professional,” said an official of the West Bengal University of Technology.
Samir Banerjee, vice-chancellor, WBUT, said: “With the cost of studying engineering escalating, students are opting for better job prospects.”