Mahindra Group is setting up its fifth Mahindra Pride School (MPS) in Srinagar. According to a press statement, Anand Mahindra, chairman of Mahindra Group, announced that the aim of MPSs will be to train and create a pool of one million employable youth by 2022.

Other MPSs are located in Pune, Chennai, Patna and Chandigarh graduating 600 students annually from each city, except Chennai where the number is 800.

MPS, Srinagar, will commence its first batch, with the specific objective of helping the youth of Jammu and Kashmir channelize their energies productively. These schools are established to help mainstream socially and economically disadvantaged youth through vocational education and training.

The aim is to make them employable in the organized private sector with over 85% of them coming from the scheduled castes and scheduled tribes. The MPS graduates students after intensive skill training in a range of specializations, including retail sales, hospitality and house-keeping and ITES including BPO and KPO.

“There is a larger need to appropriately skill massive numbers of unemployed Indian youth for the burgeoning service sector, where there is a huge demand for a skilled job-ready workforce at the entry level. The Mahindra Partners investment division is actively exploring options to significantly scale up the number of trained youth by evaluating further expansion of the Pride School network through a social for-profit enterprise model,” said Rajeev Dubey, president, group HR and aftermarket sector, Mahindra & Mahindra.

The first MPS was set up in March 2007, in Pune and currently has 4,503 alumni who have passed out over the previous five and a half years. This school operates out of an independent building with modern infrastructure that includes a lab with 30 personal computers, a simulated housekeeping and restaurant training set-up, classrooms with LCD projectors and a PA system. Other facilities include a canteen area where the 150 students from each batch are served a lunch on all days of the 3 months they spend in the campus.

The school also has a TV viewing room and a Library, as well as equipment for practical training on BPO voice-processes.

The MPS is fully funded by the KC Mahindra Education Trust with the investment per student ranging from Rs 18,000 to Rs 20,000. Some of the premier organizations that regularly employ MPS alumni across the country include Cafe Coffee Day, McDonald’s, Pizza Hut, Hotel Le Meridien, JW Marriott Group, TCS, Dell Computers, Tanishq, Fariyas Resort, Hotel Oakwood Residency, Sodexo, Mphasis, Syntel, WNS, Bharti AXA and Tata Business Support Services.