New Delhi, Oct. 3 -- The latest reason to bunk classes may be the best one yet. Kerala has come out with a study model that allows college students to skip their regular classes if they spend that time working on 'innovative ideas'. It gets better: Those who transform their ideas into a reality will get 4% grace marks.
Kerala government's Student Entrepreneurship Policy, the first of its kind in the country, will allow college students to join an incubator - a place where students can shape and market their ideas - and enjoy 20% relaxation in attendance, with 4% marks added to their total score at the end of the academic year.
"We expect this policy will give students time to pursue entrepreneurship and innovation during their studies," Kerala chief minister Oommen Chandy said.
Students from the rest of the country may soon enjoy the same perks if the department of science and technology has its way.
The department, which has set up the world's largest telecom incubator in Kochi with help from the private sector, now wants the HRD ministry to suggest the Kerala model to other higher education institutions.
The department plans to start around 100 incubators for sectors such as computing, animation and electronics in the next three years to help young Indians take innovative ideas to the market.
"We already have around 1,000 applications on innovations from college students and companies such as Blackberry are now part of the project," 28-year-old chief executive officer of Kochi's incubator Sanjay Vijay Kumar said.
Abhishek Goyal, co-founder of Flipkart, and Sasha Mirchandani, co-founder of venture investment fund Mumbai Angels Network, are working with the government to foster the plan.
"We have opened a Pandora's Box," said Mirchandani, adding that the government policy of providing seed money to entrepreneurs would be a "great help".
In spite of India being the second fastest growing economy, the concept of technology fostering incubators has not picked up so far.
Of about 5,000 incubators in the world, India has only 65 - a stark contrast with China's 1,000 or US's 2,000.
Published by HT Syndication with permission from Hindustan Times.