Over 52% of the B.E./B.Tech seats available under the government quota in self-financing engineering colleges in Tamil Nadu found no takers this year.
According to the Tamil Nadu Engineering Admissions (TNEA 2019) committee, which completed the seat allotment process on Tuesday, only 83,396 candidates who turned up for the counselling joined an engineering college under the government quota.
Still, over 52% of the seats remained vacant at the end of the single-window counselling. However, the admission figures were slightly better than the previous year, when only 46.44% of the B.E./B.Tech seats under government quota was filled.
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Aspirants have shown a marked preference for information technology and computer science engineering this year. Engineering professors say the choices are being made out of ignorance and the popular perception about job opportunities.
“There is no awareness about the trends. The allure of digital India and the electronic industry are pushing them away from civil, mechanical and instrumentation engineering,” said S. Chandramohan, Head of Electrical and Electronics Engineering, College of Engineering, Guindy. In his Department, only 36 students have joined so far, though all 60 seats had been allotted during the counselling.
To boost admissions in core engineering branches, he said the government must start filling vacancies in its various departments as this would in turn trigger a recruitment drive from public sector companies and private institutions.
“Certification of buildings and installations by engineers should be made compulsory. It should be a national policy. Such a move will create opportunities for the students,” Mr. Chandramohan said. Fear of the unknown prevents students from taking risks (and joining core engineering courses), said T. Alwarsamy, principal of Government College of Engineering, Bargur.
“Most of the students who join government colleges are first-generation learners and are from modest economic backgrounds. They are averse to taking risks like turning entrepreneurs,” Mr. Alwarsamy said.