A new software program that provides career guidance has been developed by students for students
Recently, Goa Engineering College student Shashank Shetye walked in at the Navhind Times office to talk about his company Leiansis. The company started in collaboration with fellow student Prasad Honavar and partner Sudhir Acharya in January this year is still green. However, it is interesting because of the product it sells and because of the age of the founders. Excluding Acharya, they are all youth and different from the regular, time-hardened entrepreneurs.
Leiansis, says Shetye, is in the field of education. The company, he says, differs from other start-ups because of its social objectives. Its goals are altruistic and aimed at guiding fellow students in their careers so that they do not become misfits and hate their jobs like most adults do in today’s world.
As a computer science student, Shetye is passionate about technology and so he along with partner Honavar developed a software program that uses computers to help students make the right career choice. The program is targeted at 9th and 10th standard students and is certain to catch their interest. It will certainly not have them pressing the Esc button, he says, although the program is in sessions and extends over 30 weeks.
Most students, says Shetye, have no idea of what they are studying or their area of interest. They sit for exams and study for marks to satisfy parents and for college admissions. Regular aptitude tests do nothing but determine ability. It is static and of no use even to brilliant students who thanks to ability can anyway join good institutes, he says.
The program developed by his company, says Shetye, is for all students. It makes no judgement on ability and tests the interest, personality, skills, among other things. It is confidence building and actually ends up boosting performance of candidates.
To develop the software the founders collaborated with more than 50 experts in different fields. Therefore the program determines student interests in diverse areas ranging from arts to history or psychology or computers. The only field that is unaddressed is sports.
Early response to the program from schools like Saraswati Vidyalaya, Mapusa, Mushtifund, Progress High School and Shantadurga Higher Scecondary School is encouraging. But efforts to sell properly will commence in the summer holidays when schools are closed and students have time on hands.
Leiansis’ unusual business idea is being supported by incubator CIBA, Verna. The incubating centre, points out Shetye, is of great help in getting together Sudhir Acharya as partner. Acharya, although an elder in comparison, was also sold on the career program and is eager to promote it as a business venture. The program costs Rs 5,000 and payment is in installments of Rs 2,500. The first installment is during enrolling and the second within two months.
Promotions are primarily on social media. Like all youngsters, Shetye is highly involved with FB and other social media. Smartphones and social media, according to him, are today’s tool for individuals to foray into technology related products.