In the past year, schools and colleges have remained shuttered, yet educational fees persistently drain our pockets. If you find yourself in this majority, questioning the purpose behind these payments, you’re not alone. The educational landscape has changed, and the traditional model we’re funding may no longer be relevant. Let’s delve into why you might be shelling out your hard-earned money without clear returns.

Firstly, it’s crucial to acknowledge that if you’re assuming your fees are exclusively for academic content, you’re mistaken. The closure of institutions for over a year prompts reflection on the efficacy of the education system. Why, then, are we investing in private institutions when, theoretically, the same content is available in government schools? The answer lies not just in textbooks but in the environment these institutions provide. Private schools often offer a more conducive atmosphere for holistic development.

However, even private institutions may fall short in efficiency. To understand why, we must trace the roots of our current education system back to the British era. The British designed an education system not to nurture future global leaders but to mold disciplined subjects subservient to their colonial rule. English was introduced, among other subjects, not to empower but to control. Today, as we pay exorbitant fees, it’s crucial to question the system’s origin and relevance to our aspirations.

To comprehend the shortcomings of our current system, it’s essential to revisit India’s ancient education system – the Gurukuls. In the Mahabharata, the Pandavas received training tailored to their individual skills. Arjuna excelled in archery, Bhima in mace combat, Yudhishthira in strategy, and Nakula-Sahadeva in warfare. Their guru, Dronacharya, wasn’t just a textbook teacher but a skilled warrior himself. This personalized approach ensured that the Pandavas acquired practical skills applicable to their roles as future leaders.

Contrast this with the modern system, where a one-size-fits-all approach prevails. Imagine a lion, a bear, a frog, a donkey, a horse, and an elephant, all receiving training to climb a tree. The analogy reveals the absurdity of expecting uniform skills from diverse individuals. Our education system, similarly, may not recognize and develop individual talents. If someone excels in dance but is pushed into cooking, their true potential might be overlooked.

Now, let’s talk about the relevance of what we learn. How much of the curriculum—integration, differentiation, historical events—actually proves beneficial in real life? A staggering 70% of what we study may not find practical application. This prompts us to question the true value of the education we’re investing in.

As we consider alternatives, recent developments shed light on innovative approaches to education. Take, for instance, Masters Union, a B school in Gurugram. This institution, breaking away from traditional norms, aims to equip students with skills directly applicable to the corporate world. The emphasis is on practical knowledge and industry-specific expertise. The article I recently read on Masters Union sparked contemplation on the need for a paradigm shift in our approach to education.

The pertinent question arises: If traditional education is proving insufficient, where should we channel our time, attention, and financial resources? The answer lies in recognizing and adapting to the evolving landscape. MNCs, the dream destinations for many, require more than just academic prowess. They demand practical skills, adaptability, and a nuanced understanding of the industry.

So, what’s the roadmap to secure a career in these coveted corporations? It begins with acknowledging that the current system might not be the most effective route. Instead, investing in specialized, industry-oriented education becomes imperative. This shift isn’t just about changing the content of education but redefining the very approach to learning.

Let’s talk about the practical aspects. If you’re eyeing a lucrative career in the corporate world, consider institutions that prioritize real-world skills over theoretical knowledge. Masters Union, for instance, is carving a niche in this domain. While the fees may seem steep initially, compare it to the long-term investment in your career. This transition from traditional education may necessitate a shift in mindset, but the dividends in terms of career growth and fulfillment could be substantial.

As we navigate this transformative journey, it’s crucial to recognize that the value of education extends beyond textbooks and classrooms. It’s about acquiring skills that empower us in the real world, not just certifying our ability to memorize information. By redirecting our focus and resources toward education that aligns with the demands of the contemporary job market, we can break free from the shackles of an outdated system.

In the realm of education, the landscape is shifting, and one institution that stands out in this transformation is Masters Union, a business school with a distinctive approach. Traditional education models often revolve around professors well-versed in academic knowledge but lacking practical industry experience. Herein lies the crux of the problem – theoretical expertise doesn’t necessarily translate into real-world applicability.

A recent incident exemplifies this issue. A high-ranking CA, celebrated for securing an All India rank, was recruited by a corporate entity. However, upon entering the workforce, it became apparent that theoretical prowess didn’t equate to practical know-how. This disjunction prompted the Chartered Accountant Institute to file a complaint, leading to the suspension of the individual’s degree. The incident serves as a glaring testament to the shortcomings of the conventional education system.

Contrastingly, institutions like Masters Union are embracing a paradigm shift. Rather than relying on traditional professors, Masters Union boasts a faculty comprising CXOs, members of Parliament, and industry leaders such as Shashi Tharoor. The absence of conventional teachers is deliberate – Masters Union is about learning from those who have navigated the intricacies of the business world, shaping companies worth thousands of crores. This emphasis on practical experience sets it apart.

For those considering post-graduation, Masters Union offers a unique program spanning 16 months. This isn’t just an academic pursuit; it’s a holistic immersion into the world of business and technology. The curriculum goes beyond business strategies, delving into the realm of artificial intelligence, ensuring that students are not just business-savvy but technologically adept as well.

Crucially, Masters Union doesn’t adhere to the conventional classroom-only approach. From day one, students are tasked with creating their e-commerce websites, fostering a hands-on learning experience. This real-world application is invaluable, providing students with the opportunity to not only learn but apply their knowledge immediately. It’s a departure from the passive learning model, encouraging proactive engagement and entrepreneurial thinking.

What truly sets Masters Union apart is its commitment to providing practical exposure through guaranteed internships. In a mere three months, students find themselves interning at renowned MNCs like EY, BMW, McKinsey, Tata, and SoftBank. The robust corporate links of Masters Union ensure that these opportunities are not just promised but delivered, giving students a taste of the corporate world before they even complete the program.

Gurugram, the location of Masters Union, plays a pivotal role in its success. Often referred to as the corporate hub, Gurugram houses the headquarters of major Indian corporations and MNCs. This strategic location enhances the immersive learning experience, placing students at the heart of the corporate ecosystem.

In contemplating the efficacy of education, it becomes evident that the traditional route may not be the most efficient. Investing years in a standard curriculum, only to realize that a degree doesn’t guarantee practical skills, begs the question of its true value. The example of a child who never attended school but excelled as a mechanic illustrates that practical knowledge often outshines theoretical learning.

The personal experience of the author provides further insight. Having the option to pursue engineering but choosing a different path, the author highlights the discrepancy between academic learning and practical application. The emphasis here is on acquiring skills that directly contribute to earning a livelihood, rather than accumulating degrees that may not necessarily translate into employability.

The essence of the new education system advocated by the Masters Union lies in recognizing individual strengths and honing practical skills. The notion that one must spend years in formal education to succeed is challenged by the idea that practical knowledge and skill development often outshine academic accolades.

In the journey of personal and professional development, the emphasis on skills becomes increasingly paramount. The ability to harness and refine a particular skill has become a linchpin for career stability in today’s dynamic job market. However, a pertinent question arises: Why isn’t this approach ingrained in our education system from childhood? Instead of a myopic focus on textbooks, a more personalized and skill-centric educational trajectory could be transformative.

Consider a scenario where a child’s inherent talents and inclinations are identified early on. If a child shows an aptitude for business, why not tailor their education to cultivate and enhance those skills right from the beginning? Similarly, if a child is passionate about dance, why burden them with subjects like chemistry that may hold no relevance to their chosen career path? The concept is simple – let children spend their time and energy on what genuinely interests them.

Reflecting on the conventional educational timeline, it’s disheartening to see an 18-year-old Indian investing the first 14 years in school, followed by four years in graduation. This standardized approach appears inefficient when one could potentially invest those 18 years honing skills aligned with their passion and career aspirations. The notion that an individual aspiring to be a chef would be better served by learning culinary arts rather than studying unrelated subjects holds true in the evolving landscape of career opportunities.

Contrary to conventional beliefs, career options have expanded beyond traditional paths. Take, for instance, the field of culinary arts. In today’s context, chefs in renowned 5-star establishments earn salaries surpassing those of typical B.Tech engineers in India. This paradigm shift underscores the importance of recognizing and fostering skills that align with contemporary career trajectories.

The global pandemic, while confining us to our homes, has not stifled our ability to develop. Opportunities for growth and evolution persist, prompting individuals to rethink their approach to education. For those aspiring to enter the corporate world, the key lies in understanding the specific skills coveted by industry giants like Microsoft, Google, and Amazon. A mere mastery of textbooks is insufficient; these corporations seek a broader skill set. Thus, the onus is on individuals to identify and develop the skills that will make them valuable contributors to these coveted workplaces.

Traditional metrics of success, such as All India ranks and high scores, are gradually losing their sheen. The corporate world operates on a different currency – skills. Hiring and firing dynamics within corporations emphasize the importance of practical know-how over academic accolades. Individuals armed with skills not only secure lucrative job offers but also find themselves indispensable to the workforce.

The crux of the matter lies in adopting a mindset focused on skill development rather than score accumulation. It’s not about how many numbers one can amass but about what one knows and can contribute to the professional arena. Companies aren’t just looking for individuals with theoretical knowledge; they want those who can apply that knowledge effectively in the workplace.

In light of these developments, a paradigm shift in education becomes imperative. The recommendation is to base education on curiosity, allowing individuals to explore and learn what genuinely interests them. For example, if someone has a passion for dance, delving into contemporary and jazz forms would be more relevant and rewarding than adhering strictly to textbooks.

Opting not to pursue engineering despite parental expectations, the author underscores the importance of practical knowledge and skills over degrees. The example of a child excelling as a mechanic without formal education serves as a powerful testament to the value of hands-on, practical learning.

It’s crucial to shift from the conventional mindset of pursuing education for the sake of obtaining degrees. Instead, the focus should be on cultivating skills that directly contribute to one’s livelihood and career aspirations. The evolving landscape demands a proactive approach, where individuals consciously choose pathways that align with their passions and aptitudes.

Finally, an innovative initiative by Masters Union, a business school that goes beyond conventional education. The creation of a ₹5 crore corpus fund, handed over to students for investment, is a groundbreaking move. This forward-thinking approach empowers students to engage in real-world financial activities, fostering a spirit of entrepreneurship and financial acumen.