EARN WHILE YOU LEARN is an innovative scheme designed by the Higher Education Department Government of Kerala to inculcate a value-conscious educational community in the modern-day academic environment and enable them to acquire vocational skills and thereby acquire saving habits and financial self-reliance. The design of the said project is based on the cyclical concept of working with learning and thereby saving, economic self-sufficiency and the financial stimulus it creates in society. The ultimate aim of the project is to effectively transform a knowledge society into a knowledge economy, thereby making the society in which the student belongs more cohesive and on a holistic development path. The EARN WHILE YOU LEARN project, is aimed to discover the hidden talents in each student and to find the field of activity according to their abilities and thereby design a secure future life. EARN WHILE YOU LEARN is a powerful project that can wipe out unemployment in Kerala, which is leading in literacy.
In our daily life, our needs are increasing. We need to create products that meet the identified needs. Consumer food products, goods, miscellaneous services and information technology-based services. Earn while you learn is a plan designed to anticipate such situations. Colleges were instructed to prepare a clear outline under the College Education Department. Based on this, the colleges sought the interests and opinions of the students and submitted proposals. In the said proposals, employment opportunities have been created by incorporating various sectors, both traditional and innovative. Various construction works and repairs are being carried out in the colleges. In this, activities that students can do along with studies have been implemented under the EWYL scheme. Construction of signboard, college map and painting in colleges for NAAC visit was formed in the college campus itself. These were very favourable to the project. Along with that, various job opportunities with the skill of information technology were also available from the colleges. Updation of college websites and video editing etc are some of them
Inculcating the awareness of self-entrepreneurship among the students was a tough challenge. The talent in each student needs to be discovered and nurtured. For that, it was possible to interact with experts in the fields of business administration and marketing and share ideas and create awareness to choose between right and wrong. Then the students themselves created an opportunity to find their own field. The schedule of students is arranged in a precise structure while engaging in employment along with studies. The scheme has been successfully carried forward by organizing post-study hours as well as holidays in colleges and with the help of expert teachers. To create awareness among the students to start business enterprises and run them successfully with social responsibility. The conviction was formed in the students that even a small organization is capable of impacting the economic structure of society. Balancing Work and Study Demands:- Students may struggle to manage their time effectively between work commitments and academic responsibilities, leading to potential burnout or compromised academic performance. Clear communication between students, employers, and the educational institution is vital to set realistic expectations and avoid misunderstandings. Securing funding for the program’s implementation and ensuring its long-term sustainability can be a significant challenge, especially for institutions with limited financial resources. Faculty members need to coordinate with employers and adjust coursework to accommodate the EWYL program, which might require additional resources and effort. Monitoring students’ progress during their work placements and assessing the quality of their experiences can be time-consuming for the educational institution.
For the implementation of the EARN scheme, meticulous and long-term steps have been taken by the Department of College Education. In order to fulfil this objective, feedback was sought from the students of various colleges under the Department of College Education. 29,247 students participated in the survey. From the survey results, 92% of the students are ready to work along with their studies. Along with that, students can choose their favourite fields and practice their profession.
The office has received proposals from around forty government colleges in Kerala for implementing the EWYL scheme. From the examination of the available proposals, it is informed that in this age of technological development, job opportunities can be created by providing training in the areas of internet-assisted work such as website updating, data entry, web designing, online marketing and hardware & software maintenance. Proposals have been submitted from colleges including employment opportunities with the help of modern systems and other areas. A wide range of career options are available such as teaching, agriculture, tax consultancy, photography/videography, plumbing, housekeeping, etc. Such available proposals have been submitted for the consideration of the Government. A warm response was received from the government. After checking the proposals and being convinced, the amount for the implementation of the project was sanctioned by the government. The amount sanctioned by the government is disbursed from this office to the respective colleges as per the available proposals. The amount thus obtained was effectively utilized in all the colleges. All types of work as per submitted proposals were completed responsibly. In the financial year 2022-23, various activities were implemented as a continuation of the EWYL project. Funds have been sanctioned for the construction of kitchen gardens in all government colleges under the department. The proceeds were effectively utilized by all the colleges to build a lush kitchen garden and receive the vegetable produce produced in the canteens of the respective colleges and provide non-toxic food and income to the students.
Freedom Wall is a project planned by the Department of College Education as part of the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav launched by the Central Government in connection with the 75th Independence Day of India. For this, 62 colleges under the department were selected. On the walls of the said colleges, people and events related to the freedom struggle were displayed in the form of pictures. For this, the students themselves were assigned the responsibility and the amount was allocated. Through the said project, the students of the modern era were also able to develop their contribution and patriotism related to the freedom struggle. A very positive response has been received from the students. Also, initial steps are being taken to start small-scale industrial units. In the first phase, it is decided to set up only one college.
“Waste to Wealth programme” is one of the inventive measures of the Earn While You Learn Programme in which the students of the Bachelor of Fine Arts at RLV Govt. College of Music and Fine Arts will be making large sculptures and souvenirs from recycled waste. The programme is envisaged to be conducted in 3 phases. The 1st phase involves building of large sculptures from waste materials by students in prominent places in the city, thereby attracting the attention of the tourists. In the second phase, the college students will be collaborating with the local self-government and Kudumbasree which help in creating public awareness and thereby conscientious the local people of the need to collect and segregate recycled waste. They become conscious of the necessity of creating a market for the products thus assembled. The Third Phase includes industrial collaboration and exports of local souvenirs into international markets. The State Government has sanctioned a total of 1 crore Rupees and the amount will be dispersed in different phases for setting up a mini industrial unit in the college premises.
Students were able to work responsibly along with their studies and develop saving habits. According to the proposals submitted by the colleges, employment opportunities have been created in the fields of manufacturing, service, agriculture etc. and the students have been employed with their full interests and wages have been allocated. Apart from academic studies, when students are engaged in such activities, it helps them to ease the mental tension and behave towards their classmates as social being. This scheme enables students to bring out their hidden talents with the help of teachers and develop a habit of income similar to a means of livelihood by showing their skills in various career fields by including them in the government scheme Earn While You Learn. Above all, the scheme provides an opportunity to participate in the development plans of a college and to make a personal mark in devising long-term plans aimed at infrastructure development. Through the project, a future generation with financial security can be created. The project has been able to create better awareness among the students about the various stages of economics and how economics influences the progress of a country. Industries, whether small or large, influence the wealth structure of a country. The majority of the students studying in the colleges under the college education department have already identified the equations of economics. In the current financial year, more students than last year have expressed their interest to be a part of the project. The implementation of the Earn While You Learn program in colleges leads to enhanced employability, financial support, industry relevance, personal growth, academic integration, employer collaboration, soft skill development, positive social impact, community engagement, and public awareness. It benefits students, educational institutions, employers, and society at large, creating a win-win scenario for all stakeholders involved.
The success of the Earn While You Learn program in a college creates a positive ripple effect, increasing its potential for replicability in other educational institutions. Even though the programme is running successfully in Government colleges the Demonstrating measurable outcomes, positive feedback from stakeholders, engagement of employers, and support from faculty and alumni are critical factors in influencing aided and self-financing colleges to adopt this programme. Ultimately, the program’s replicability can lead to a broader and more widespread positive impact on student’s education and career outcomes. A successful EWYL program in one college serves as a powerful demonstration of the program’s effectiveness. When other institutions see positive outcomes, such as improved employability, student retention, and student satisfaction, they are more likely to consider implementing a similar program. The establishment of strong employer partnerships during the implementation of the EWYL program can be leveraged to replicate the initiative in other colleges. These existing connections can provide a foundation for expanding the program to new institutions. Colleges that have successfully implemented the EWYL program can share their best practices, lessons learned, and strategies for overcoming challenges with other institutions. This knowledge-sharing can streamline the replication process and increase the likelihood of success. A network of colleges or educational organizations that collaborate on the EWYL program can provide support and resources for replication. This network can facilitate discussions, provide training, and offer guidance to new institutions interested in adopting the program. Alumni who have participated in the EWYL program and experienced its benefits can become advocates for the initiative. Their success stories and testimonials can inspire other colleges to adopt the program. If the EWYL program has led to academic recognition or awards for the college, this can attract the attention of other educational institutions seeking innovative and impactful programs to implement. The EWYL program’s alignment with broader educational goals, such as increasing student employability, promoting experiential learning, and enhancing student engagement, makes it an attractive option for other colleges with similar objectives. The positive impact of the EWYL program on the local community and industry can garner support from external stakeholders, encouraging other colleges to replicate the program to meet regional workforce needs. The EWYL program can be adaptable to different contexts and disciplines. Colleges can tailor the program to suit the needs and characteristics of their student population and local job market, making it feasible for diverse institutions. If the EWYL program has received support from government bodies or external funding agencies, this can create an encouraging environment for other colleges to adopt the program, knowing that financial backing and recognition are available. The potential for replicability of the EWYL program in other colleges arises from its demonstrated success, strong employer partnerships, sharing of best practices, alumni influence, network of support, academic recognition, alignment with educational goals, community and industry support, adaptability, and government or funding backing. These factors combined make it an attractive and feasible option for other institutions seeking to provide valuable work experiences and financial support to their students.