Imagine a place where you feel motivated to study, where industry interacts regularly with students, where trainers and lecturers go back into Industry through externships to refine their craft, where students travel to industry visits to learn about latest work practices in a stress-free atmosphere, where students are invited to take the lead although they may not be ready and feel okay to try and fail without reprimand, where lecturers do not face down students as the “know-it-alls” but indulge in an exchange of knowledge and challenge them to think differently, where students can also let loose on campus and have a fun time.
We firmly believe at the Polytechnics that having fun and doing serious work are not mutually exclusive. Above all, students are oriented towards a holistic curriculum not because extra-curriculars are common place but because if structured well, they help to forge the personality and character of students and turn them into the managers and leaders of tomorrow.
Such a place exists…that’s right!
In 2017, the Government of Mauritius through the then Ministry of Education and Human Resources, Tertiary Education and Scientific Research (now, Ministry of Education, Tertiary Education, Science and Technology) launched Polytechnics Mauritus Ltd (PML), a state-owned enterprise with a sole purpose. To bridge the gap of middle to high skills and deliver on the emerging needs of Government and Industry for a qualified and skilled human talent at the mid-professional level through higher technical education. Programmes at PML are dynamic and customized to the needs of the world of work. Industry is involved at the start i.e. at the stage of programme design and throughout delivery until the end. As a constant partner, mentor and coach in the learning process, Industry’s influence is matched only by its accountability in ensuring that the education stays current, topical and relevant every step of the way.
Through a diversified and multi-campus structure, PML focuses on different priority sectors of economic activity. Reduit, nestled close to the CyberCity is home to the ICT and Emerging Technology cluster; Montagne Blanche focuses on Tourism and Hospitality, Cruise Management and Pamplemousses, situated in the Medical Hub next to the Cardiac Unit and SSRN Hospital, harbours the Allied Health, Nursing and Paramedics cluster as well as the Engineering and Logistics vertical. Each campus is endowed with State-of-the-Art and innovative “Skills Labs” and “Design Spaces” to create thinking doers.
THE NEXUS WITH INDUSTRY
We purposefully align our programmes to the needs and demands of industry stakeholders through a rigorous practice-immersed curriculum that prepares our students for the world of work in Mauritius and beyond. Industry stakeholders are brought into the discussion with our international and local partner educational institutions at the level of programme design so that this makes for a combined effort and joint initiative for a relevant and adapted programme offering. At PML, we partner with foreign institutions to bring forward the requisite programmes in line with big pillars of economic activity and emerging areas of the economy.
At Polytechnics Mauritius Ltd, we believe decision making should be oriented through a data driven mindset. Justification of programmes should be based on data gathering – quantitative and qualitative to the extent possible and through rigorous analytics
OUR LEARNING DNA – THE 4Ps OF POLYTECHNICS
The journey towards high- skills includes a foray into practice-base immersion. This ranges from industry visits to traineeships, shadow programmes, speaker series, internships and placements. We see this as an invaluable cog on the educational chain to increase the readiness of our students of the world of work.
Practical immersion cannot stand alone. We seeks to connect time spent in industry and bring it back to the classroom as projects, presentations and assignments that can be marked by both academics and industry professionals students get a real flair for their work’s worth in the eyes of the industry.
Often times, students are called upon to showcase their work when applying for jobs. Rather than a lone stint of a written assignment or assessment, we believe industry wishes to see the journey and not only the products. Through the portfolio, a student recaps her/his work throughout the duration of the programme.
We believe it is equally important for students to learn from their peers as from the lecturer. This is when the class transforms into a learning lab for the lecturer assuming the duty of a facilitator rather than a purveyor of absolute truth. Peer-to-peer provides for an engaging learning environment replete with back and forth changes.
WHAT SETS US APART – the PolyIDENTITY
Knowledge and technical skills are not enough. To get the perfect job, grow in one’s career fast, become a manager, impress a future employer, something more is needed. Soft skills and non-core skills are rarely included in the programme of study or developed in class. This is why we have come up with the PolyIDENTITY for the holistic development of the individual whether it be a school leaver or a working professional.
The PolyIDENTITY comprises four key aspects and requires students to complete around 4% of total programme hours towards PolyCORE, PolyCAS, Professional Conduct and Individual Projects. Over the length of your studies, you will have numerous sessions and will eventually receive a Polytechnics Leaving Certificate with a PolyIDENTITY score. Let’s explore each one!
PolyCORE: Throughout your Diploma, you will be exposed to 15 soft skills areas. From workshops centered on ‘Leaning to say No’ to ‘Grooming and Etiquette’; from ‘Introducing Oneself Properly’ to ‘Networking for Success’; from ‘Making an Impromptu Presentation’ to ‘Delivering an Elevator Pitch’; from ‘Cultural Awareness’ to ‘attitude over and above aptitude’, PolyCORE sessions are practical and hands-on. Students will “practice” the skill, rather than just “learn” it.
PolyCAS: Students spend their time in Creativity, Action and Service (CAS) with a view to stir an inside-out transformation. Who says an IT student cannot develop a passion for painting? Or tourism students cannot visit an orphanage or elderly persons’ home to grow their empathy? This is what CAS does. It goes beyond academics to initiate students to real life.
Professional Conduct: We are strict for students’ own good. In the real world, if a meeting starts at 8.30 am, reaching late is not permissible. We allocate positive marks for good behaviour and negative marks to reprimand bad behaviour. From grooming to attendance, the student is constantly monitored.
Individual Projects: We encourage our students to align a solo or group project to their passion. This is not an assignment but a voluntary task or project that helps the student/s become better at their field and craft. At the same time, it gets them busy and makes the job interview more worthwhile. Something concrete to tall about.