Skills and knowledge are the driving forces of economic growth and social development for any country. Skills are the expertise or talent needed in order to do a job or task. The Quality Mandate of University Grant Commission (UGC) prescribes measures for providing Life Skills (including soft skills) to students enrolled in Higher Education Institutions especially at under-graduate level. Life skills are the "core skills" or behaviours each individual must acquire and inculcate internally as wells as externally and apply responsibly in professional, personal and social life for betterment of self and others. These skills help young minds to deal with any situation in personal, profession and social life, however demanding it may be. Adoption of life skills is the key to excellence. Broad categories of life skills are as follows :
- Job skills are those that are necessary to grow or work well with others and are acquired through education, training and direct experience. Some common job skills are professional skills, organizational skills, analytical skills, leadership and management skills, decision-making and team building skills.
- Soft skills are those that equip a person to fit into a social structure. Soft skills can include social graces, communication abilities, language skills, personal habits, cognitive or emotional empathy, problem solving, time management, flexibility and universal values.
There has been a shift in recent times in the mindset of college students. Students no longer flock to higher education institutions just for the experience or for the chance to become "more well-rounded". Instead, students seek out a college education to ensure they are more employable after graduation or look for degrees that can ensure employment in future. More often than not employment outcomes after graduation are not as desired or expected.
In Gokhale Memorial Girls' College, students come from various lived experiences, cultural backgrounds, financial situations and ability levels. Many of them require the basic skills that could help in career-building or help them cope with difficult and challenging aspects of adult life. In adherence to the principles of holistic education the College undertakes several initiatives in every academic session to help the students develop additional employability skills and other life skills.