Industry, academe collaborate on more responsive engineering curricula

In keeping with its commitment to forging industry-academe linkages, PBEd is currently engaged in a comprehensive review of five (5) BS Engineering curricula, as part of the Science, Technology, Research, and Innovation for Development (STRIDE) project. STRIDE is a five-year USAID project aimed at spurring inclusive growth in the country through science and research.

The phenomenon of jobs-skills mismatch has long been a national concern, amid the country’s positive economic prospects. Executive outlook surveys have shown the increasing difficulty in hiring graduates that meet industry’s competency requirements. Thus, in 2015, PBEd spearheaded the industry-driven profiling of competencies expected of new graduates from the following fields of engineering: agricultural, chemical, civil, electrical, and industrial. Participants included industry practitioners from the country’s top companies. The output was a comprehensive profile of knowledge, skills, and attitudes that industry believes are critical for an entry-level engineer to have.

For 2016, PBEd is assessing the capacity of existing engineering curricula to develop these industry-defined competencies, in the process identifying gaps and overlaps that can be addressed on a policy level. Participants include faculty members from STRIDE’s partner universities that are centers of excellence or development. The expected output is a set of enhanced outcomes-based curricula, for transmission to the Commission on Higher Education as input to its curricular reform efforts.