UPGRAD.COM: BUILDING CAREERS OF TOMORROW
The Vision of UpGrad is to “Build Careers of Tomorrow”. It has now grown into India’s largest Online Education Company.
The vision of UpGrad is to “build careers of tomorrow”. It is a company based in India, founded by Business Tycoon Ronnie Screwvala (UTV co-founder) with a few IIT, IIM, ISB graduates. The objective with which UpGrad was started is to bridge the skill gap between industry and college graduates.
It has now grown into India’s largest online education company. During the lockdown, the ed-tech company launched initiatives offering an MBA course for 2 months for a nominal fee of Rs. 10,000/- till June 15th, 2020. After attending the two-month long classes, if the student wishes,he/shecan continue the course or leave.
While launching the initiative, Ronnie Screwvala, Co-founder and Executive Chairman, UpGrad said, “We are taking the front and centre position in taking education online for India. Don’t many of us wish when we did our MBA, we had an offer like this? Exceptional times call for exceptional initiatives. For all working professionals/graduates to make the right choice, start the journey with for the first 2 months, and then decide.”
Additionally, UpGrad also announced ten new courses which can benefit students working on their skillsets and aiming for a career growth. At a time when the pandemic has induced fears of recession, of losing jobs, employability is the skill the youth needs most.
UpGrad not only offers an online learning platform which has its own set of advantages, but also offers university-certified degrees. Over the years, UpGrad has collaborated with some prominent universities in Management, Data Science and Computer Science. To name a few, it partners with BITS Pilani, IIIT-Bangalore, Deakin University, Liverpool Business School, NMIMS, MICA.
India has the largest number of college-going youth. Higher education is emphasized the most in India out of all countries in the world.
Yet, 70 % of the graduates in India are unemployable while 80 % of companies hiring students report a want of digital skills in students.
India is a country where 60 % of the population is young but less than 25 % are pursuing higher education. Of those pursuing higher education, only 30 % will be employable.
There is a trend of people moving at least eight jobs in a career and successfully. Working professionals therefore, will need to upskill, not to compete but only to stay compatible with the trend.
Hence, there is certainly a need to change the approach towards education and bring reforms in the education system of the country. As things are changing very fast, education has to be a continuous and universally accessible process.
Many jobs have been created but remain vacant due to the lack of professionals in the field. Even if one wants to get trained in a certain field, it is not very easy to leave the job and procure a degree. The working professionals in India numbers 80 million and they cannot, even if they wish to, go back to continue their higher education, leaving their jobs.
One has to invest in continuous learning if they want to remain pertinent and online education is an ideal platform to get effective and refurbished knowledge and skills. Also, one can do it while continuing to work.
This may sound a counter-intuitive plan because conventionally, we are made to believe that one should start with the youngsters wanting to acquire a degree. However, UpGrad works the reverse way, targeting the working professionals.
Also, conventional system of education suggests that education through internet cannot work. At least, no one thought it could give placements or direct results.
However, the only way to amass the huge number of working professionals is to reach to them online. Also, the online platform of learning suits the convenience of the learners targeted. It does not follow the conventional time discipline. It works to provide ease and comfort.
Also, the duration of the courses is no shorter than usual. Yet the courses provide value and hence are not under-priced. Finally, actively seeking university affiliations, not just from Indian universities, but those worldwide, made UpGrad go a notch higher.
UpGrad collaborated also with the Cambridge Judge Business School, and the Director Executive of Education, Mr. Kishore Sengupta, says that while they believe in ‘transformation’, of individuals, organisations and society. They therefore extended support and encouragement to new businesses which contribute to social enterprise, which is the belief that led to their collaboration with UpGrad.
One might say that online education is for casual learning and cannot impact careers. It is believed that people do online courses leisurely when they have nothing else to do but there are others too who learns sincerely.
However, a skilled individual will get placed and get the right career growth they deserve. UpGrad guarantees placements. In fact, it has a job portal which showcases all the career opportunities. It provides a career coach who helps students in one-on-one interviews. UpGrad organises Career Fairs and Hackathons where students can get the best job opportunities. They also organise networking sessions in which students can get together and peer-to-peer learning can be facilitated. Students are mentored directly by industry experts. Also, the best part: Students can get their interviews scheduled and feedback is received instantly.
Students get a personalised mentor and immediate doubt resolution which is one step higher than the traditional classroom format.
Some of the top companies that have recruited graduates from UpGrad are Amazon, ESPN, IBM, Swiggy, Ola, Microsoft and Flipkart.
At UpGrad, this process is brought to life by working with world-class faculty, and by developing online teaching – both academically and from the perspective of corporate skills or industry-compatible learning.
UpGrad produces engaging and immersive digital media, which provides an interesting and interactive learning platform. UpGrad has a team of content curators who have spent a lot of time understanding learning patterns of different class of individuals as per their age group to produce such a fascinating and student-friendly environment for digital learning. It has features like online chat rooms, group discussion boards and offline meetups. Academic and non-academic support is rendered to keep students motivated.
The model of learning UpGrad follows to impart knowledge is not teacher but student-centric and practicable in industry situations.
UpGrad is definitely a pioneer in providing employability skills to students and they hope to be among the top ten education companies globally in the years to come.