India’s Entry Into Washington Accord – Indian Engineers Get A Major Boost For Foreign Jobs
Indian engineering talent has finally been recognized globally, as India gets entry into the exclusive Washington Accord, which will help Indian engineers to get lucrative jobs in developed countries. India has been trying to get entry into this exclusive group of nations since last few years. After intense lobbying, India has finally become 17th nation in the world to get the privileged status.
What is Washington Accord?
Washington Accord is an “international accreditation agreement for professional engineering academic degrees”, and was established in the year 1989. The following nations are part of this exclusive club: Australia, Canada, Chinese Taipei, Hong Kong China, Ireland, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, Turkey, the United Kingdom, the United States and now India.
There are few accredited courses in engineering, which is recognized by all the nations in this accord. Now, when an engineer from India applies to any job in any of these countries, then it will be understood that the applicant meets the required educational requirements and standards and will help him to get the job which was very tough before.
The decision to include India in this exclusive club was taken by International Engineering Alliance in Wellington, New Zealand, on Friday.
How Did India Make It?
There are several prominent Indian educationists and reformists who are responsible for this major achievement. Raman Menon Unnikrishnan from California State University, Fullerton lobbied India’s case along with former National Board of Accreditation (NBA) member secretary Dinesh K Paliwal and education secretary Ashok Thakur. Paliwal was the person who organized “World Summit on Accreditation in 2012” which provided a good platform for launching India’s case with the Washington Accord.
Our new HRD minister Smriti Irani said on the occasion, “This will ensure highest quality assurance standards to be implemented in our technical and engineering programmes, and will provide global mobility to our engineering graduates. Graduates having degrees, which have been so accredited, would have substantial international equivalence of their achievement levels across the signatory nations. This will substantially enhance their employment opportunities around the world,”
Will All Engineering Courses Will be Recognized?
The recognition from this accord will not be valid for IT Engineers and Software Programmers. And, entry into this club will not mean that each and every engineering college offering any degree will be included in the list. NBA has identified 220 engineering colleges which have been ranked as Tier1 colleges, which would be initially included in the system operated by Washington Accord.
These Tier 1 colleges include IITs, NITs, Bits Pilani and more such colleges. However, every college among this list of 220 colleges will need to apply fresh for getting the advantages offered by Washington Accord, and a massive re-designing of courses will also happen to make our engineering courses at-par with those offered in the rest of 16 countries in this list.
For example, engineering colleges in these 16 countries part of Washington Accord have included social sciences as a major subject along with engineering. Hence, we will also need to implement the same if our graduates wish to take advantage of the foreign jobs under the accord.
It will take some time to get all our engineering colleges at the same platform which is witnessed in other developed countries. But as we are now part of this accord, the journey from here will be easy. Indian parents have now one more reason their children for engineering!