Published: 01st October 2018
Bengaluru-based app, Verzeo, is taking tech education to remote India with courses in Indian languages
Learning tech-based subjects may be the future but learning them in your mother-tongue is still not adaptive to the Indian Edutech space but it's growing slowly
If you have always wanted to go through proper training in AI, Azure Cloud Computing, Blockchain technology, cybersecurity, web development, machine learning with Python but backed out because you are not confident about your English, there is an app to help you now. Verzeo, an e-learning platform, uses artificial intelligence (AI) to help students from Tier-II and Tier-III institutes develop skills that are essential for their chosen work field and they do it not in English but in Indian Languages — Hindi, Urdu, Telugu and Tamil — so that it helps bridge the language barrier.
The brainchild of Vungarala V Subrahmanyam, an engineering dropout, Verzeo stands out among all the other educational apps because of its personalised AI-based interface and because of the option of learning in vernacular languages. It helps students get prepared for their workplace by training them in various courses and industry program using AI and machine learning, customizing the learning experiences for the user. They have reached more than 129 cities and have offline centres at Chennai, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Mumbai and Delhi. With more than 14,800 graduates, Verzeo provides around 60 courses in Civil, Mechanical, Automobile, Computer Science and Electronics and Communication under 43 mentors.
Learning through your mother tongue: Verzeo stands out among all the other educational apps because of its personalised AI-based interface and because of the option of learning in vernacular languages
Learning tech-based subjects may be the future but learning them in your mother-tongue is still not adaptive to the Indian Edutech space but it's growing slowly. "As language barrier is the major problem in Tier II and Tier III locations we are able to get good traction and students are adapting to our platform. Students in the initial stages face a problem in understanding the subjects but gradually they are able to adapt and love the experience of learning. We follow the standard industrial curriculum which has been designed by the industry experts," says the young director.
The organisation offers a summer and a winter programme for 15 to 60 online hours each. Verzeo also organises national championships and workshop sessions in colleges across India, providing mentorship programmes on AI, Azure Cloud Computing, Blockchain technology, cybersecurity, web development, machine learning with Python, augmented reality, virtual reality, technology-based programs, SharePoint, Power PI, Selenium, DLSI and 50 stimulating courses in collaboration with Microsoft Corporation as their authorised education partner. The cost of these programmes ranges between Rs 500 and Rs 10,000.
Youth is not always a boon for an entrepreneur. For the society, Vungarala seemed too young for this Herculean task, "My age created many challenges, from convincing my parents to colleagues, higher officials and other businesses — there were several roadblocks. As a newcomer, it is anyway very difficult to convince the management of institutes for partnerships. With no background, it was hard to reach students."
As language barrier is the major problem in Tier II and Tier III locations we are able to get good traction and students are adapting to our platform
Vungarala V Subrahmanyam, Founder, Verzeo
This 20-year-old from Srungavaruksham, West Godavari in Andhra Pradesh came up with his first app Transtele in 2016, during his second year at Manipal Institute of Technology. Vungarala sold his company the next year to do more. "When I was working on my previous startup (Transtele), we used to visit rural areas for deploying WiFi services to remote areas. I was deeply moved by the deplorable condition of education in these areas and wanted to do something about it," says Vungarala. "Once I stepped down from the board of Transtele I started Verzeo with a vision to serve those who have not been fortunate enough to go to the best schools and colleges of India."
They are planning to expand to other countries as well. "We have already had good traction from Singapore and Malaysia. By the next six months we should be able to expand our reach there as well," hopes Vungarala.