Why is Engineering Losing its Charm in Pakistan?

1. Engineering losing its charm in Pakistan

2. Entry Tests of Engineering Universities in Pakistan

Most students come from different rural and underdeveloped areas of Pakistan and thus belong to a low economy. They cannot afford to pay all the universities separately which becomes a major hindrance. This not only puts the student into emotional turmoil but also cost them their time, money, and efforts

Also, due to different reasons, engineering has lost its charm, and the quantity of students appearing on the test has considerably declined. In the year 2020, Educational Testing and Evaluation Authority (ETEA) conducted a test in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. It was seen that only 5000 out of the 7000 registered students appeared for the test

3. Lack of Practice-based Learning

Engineering universities in Pakistan also do not cooperate with students regarding the “internship programs”. The universities do not or very rarely provide internship options to students only after their graduation is completed. During the 4 years of study, the students are not able to do internships as much as they would want which hampers their actual knowledge of the professional world.

3.1 Medical Colleges Being Close to Hospitals

However, quite contrary to this, engineering universities are not associated with engineering organizations or offices. Mostly they are not even located near the organizations, due to which there is no actual industrial knowledge

3.2 Medical Professors

4. The Era of Freelancing

With the rise in the number of freelancers among Pakistani youth, the revenue income from freelancing has shown a tremendous and considerable rise in the year 2020. Most of this rise in freelancing was also facilitated by the lockdown policy imposed during COVID-19. Also, since Asian countries like Pakistan charge low labor costs, most international clients assign their tasks to Pakistani freelancers. Seeing the growth of the freelancing industry, the youth has started diverting to this new profession. Freelancing agencies and companies have also been formed in Pakistan that take a huge amount of work and then outsource it to its employees. Seeing the growth and the future of freelancing in Pakistan, many students have started polishing their skills needed in freelancing.

Most young students who even are engineers also deviate from their engineering professions and become freelancers. This era of freelancing is also attributed to the decline in engineering professions. The youngsters are shifting from engineering and medical professions to freelancing and freelancing agencies. As bad as it may seem for the traditional professions of the East, the growth of freelancing helps in tackling the unemployment issues of Pakistan.

Figure 1: Increase in Pakistani freelance revenue

5. The Dark Future of Engineering

5.1 Unemployment

Figure 2: Unemployment in Engineering

5.2 Demand and Supply

5.3 Poor Investment and Lack of Government Regulators

6. Useless PEC and Sleeping HEC

Moreover, HEC and PEC have failed in keeping a check and balance among the universities. Recently the High Court called the PEC’s and HEC’s Chief Councilor because many universities (which were certified) were providing unaccredited courses thus wasting 4 years of students’ life. According to the Court, PEC had failed to acknowledge, appreciate and polish the bona fide students.

Another case revolved around Al-Khair University which the HEC claimed was a false university and HEC had no data. This was highly controversial because according to some students, it was HEC’s greed for money or the university’s fault. However, HEC being a higher educational organization was accountable for the student’s years. Instead, HEC disregarded the students enrolled in the university between 2009 to 2011. To gain an HEC license, the then-graduated students at Al-Khair University were to pass a test conducted by HEC. Only upon passing would they gain their license of profession or degree.

This not only put an extra burden on the students but their entire career at risk. Analyzing such events where the failure of higher authorities is visible, students have become insecure about the engineering profession.

Figure 3: Protests against HEC by Al-Khair students

7. Solution to this Problem

The quality of education must also be improved to polish students’ analytical, innovative and entrepreneurial skills. Moreover, the Chairman of PEC must be selected under some rules and regulations. The elections in PEC must be stopped.



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