In his prophetic Ted talk on ‘The Next Outbreak’ in 2015, Bill Gates mentioned the great danger posed to humankind by global epidemics as compared to nuclear war. Five years later, we are right in the middle of what may be termed as the greatest global crisis since the Second World War. Covid 19 pandemic has swept the globe and is perhaps going to be recorded in history as the most impactful and consequential event of this century. It has stretched capacities of governance , public , health , infrastructure etc.
The covid 19 started out as a health pandemic, has created long-lasting changes to the way we live and work. As it continues to spread across the globe, many countries have decided to close the schools as part of a social distancing policy. However, these closure od educational institutions has affected the education of more than 1.5 billion children and youth worldwide due to the amid pandemic situation.
1.students re-evaluating their career choices
With a lot of uncertainty surrounding future educational prospects a report says that 63% students feel that their initial career plans have been severely affected due to Covid-19, while 42% students feel that they have been forced to reconsider their preferred career choices and are thinking of having a backup plan now. The ongoing pandemic has further triggered and put question marks about travelling overseas for education. A lot of students who were originally planning on studying at an overseas university are now likely to change their higher education plans.
With the Covid-19 pandemic has impacted student’s career plans and according to a report its seen that careers like medicine, life sciences and allied medicine are among the top 15 careers which students are looking at pursuing. The top five career choices of students include business management, computer applications and IT, entrepreneurship, medicine and design.
With all the educational institutes being closed, its one of the biggest test of online teaching and home-schooling amid the covid 19 situation In these testing circumstances due to impromptu closure, the biggest scourge and the blessings in disguise are the online learning platforms also known as eLearning. This online learning method is catering to the growing demands of the students in the most efficient manner. The online learning platforms have seen a spur in the number of students who are enrolling in the plethora of courses they offer. From courses on various Government sector exams, technical courses to activities like painting and even dancing there is a unceasing list that is available to the students at the most affordable price. Technology and online learning platforms have become increasingly crucial and due to this college costs could dwindle tremendously as more students will like via online methods.
Nevertheless we cant deny the fact that this pandemic has widen the digital divide.A country like India, which is not new to eLearning but it should be kept in mind that closures of schools are likely to widen the learning gap between children from lower-income and higher-income families. While many parents with access to technology and internet are progressively turning to online education technology to keep their kids learning at home while some may not be able to. In a recent survey from India Welfare Trust, it has shed light on how children are bearing the impact of the unprecedented outbreak.
3.Graduates facing uncertainty
- Unemployment -Students graduating from college in 2020, will have a tougher time finding their first job, unlike your immediate seniors, and its obvious that unemployment levels three months after graduation will be higher.
- Job first, choice later -Students will start off fast through by making more efforts and by taking risks. Salaries may be lower by nearly 20% and students may not find jobs in their preferred domain so its important to prioritise getting any job to gain work experience and shift domains once the market improves. It is advisable that working through unpaid internships or investing your time in family business will be beneficial
- Digital skills– The job market always changes after a major crisis. This time, the change is an increased focus on online, technology and digital skills that enable workers to contribute remotely. Whatever your line of education be, you are unlikely to be considered unless you demonstrate comfort with digital tools in your field of work.
In this time of crisis well rounded and effective educational practice is what is needed for capacity building of young minds .