Mumbai University may introduce more seats in accounting, finance and hospitality

Those planning to pursue accounting and finance, management studies and hospitality after Class 12 can rejoice, as colleges affiliated to the University of Mumbai (MU) are looking to add more seats to these courses.

Contrary to the proposed new institutes, which will mostly have new divisions for traditional BA, BCom and BSc programmes, a large number of existing institutes have sought to add new divisions for self-financed courses such as BCom Accounting and Finance (BAF), BCom Banking and Insurance (BBI), Bachelor of Management Studies, Bachelor of Mass Media and BSc Hospitality Studies and BSc Computer Science.

Self-financed courses are specialised job-oriented courses, for which colleges don’t get any grant from the government. Colleges recover the expenses by charging higher fees from students.

Topping the list of eligible proposed new divisions in existing colleges is BAF and BMS – two of the self-financed, specialised courses in commerce. As many as 30 colleges affiliated to the MU are proposed to get additional divisions for BAF, while two of the proposed new colleges will offer the course in the new academic year. If all these proposals are approved by the state government, the overall intake for the course will increase by 1,920.

Similarly, there could be 17 new divisions for BMS in MU-affiliated colleges, with the number of available seats growing by 1,020.

“It is all about demand and supply. The students are tired of traditional courses such as BCom and are increasingly opting for self-financed courses. The colleges are responding to this demand,” said AA Rashid, principal, Kamala Mehta College, Andheri.

Courses for the hospitality sector such as BSc Hospitality Studies and BA Culinary Arts also got a boost, with 12 and five new proposed divisions, respectively. Until now, only a few colleges offered these programmes. “The hospitality industry is growing. There’s a requirement in the industry, as new hotels are coming up in Mumbai. Besides, the new generation is passionate about cooking,” said Shankarayya Ganechari, principal, Thakur Polytechnic, Kandivli.

“With the fintech and finance boom, courses such as BAF are becoming more popular these days. Students believe they offer high-paying jobs,” said Lily Bhushan, principal, KES Shroff College, Kandivli.

Academicians are, however, divided over whether self-financed courses actually offer an edge over traditional programmes.

“We have seen that students pursuing BAF and BMS are placed faster than BCom students,” said Chaitali Chakraborty, principal, Thakur College of Science and Commerce, Kandivli. However, Bhushan said self-financed courses may not necessarily provide better jobs. “Employment opportunities largely depend on the knowledge, and not the course,” she said.

There are other factors for colleges to add more seats for self-financed programmes.

“These courses involve less rote learning and dependence on textbook and more hands-on learning. Colleges want to adopt that practical approach,” said Rashid.

Self-financed courses are financially beneficial to colleges. “Many aided colleges opt for self-financed courses, so they can charge higher fees than aided courses. They merely appoint a coordinator and hire some temporary staff for these courses,” said the principal of a college from the western suburbs.

First Published:
May 21, 2019 00:39 IST

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