Nineteen UK engineering graduates have completed a nine-month internship as part of a pilot programme by Wipro.
The Indian IT services supplier’s India Gateway pilot programme, which was jointly funded by the UK-India Education and Research Initiative, is a three-month technology induction course followed by six months of on-the-job training with Wipro teams.
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The 19 graduates travelled to Wipro’s Bangalore campus in August last year to receive on-the-job training in skills such as user experience design, mobile application development and support, and data analytics.
“The rewards from this internship have been immense,” said Ferdinand Ade Nsoh, who completed the internship. “Despite not knowing how to program initially, I am now comfortable with most of the concepts of programming and the importance of coding standards and testing, thanks to the input and support from the faculty, mentor and my peers.”
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Maddalaine Ansell, deputy director of the international knowledge and innovation team at the UK Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, said: “The UK government is committed to supporting programmes on enhancing mobility and strengthening India-UK links. The UKIERI India Gateway Internship Programme is important as it provides an enriching opportunity to UK graduates as they embark on their careers and gain valuable experience in an emerging economy like India.”
Wipro plans to repeat the programme in the next academic year in the UK. UK-based students with a strong academic record and background in science, technology or mathematics are eligible. They must be engineering graduates or should be completing an engineering degree in the same year as the internship begins.
Indian IT companies are often criticised because their business model sees UK IT workers replaced by lower-cost workers from India. But as Indian IT services companies establish more operations in the UK and other European countries, they increasingly require local talent.
Wipro chairman Azim Premji offered to take UK students to India for 12 months to be trained up in software, IT and engineering, following a meeting with Prime Minister David Cameron in India in 2010.