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Shivani Mehrotra: AI Driven Full Stack Holistic Skilling Ecosystem on the Blockchain

Edubuk (www.edubuk.io) is creating an AI driven Full Stack Holistic Skilling Ecosystem on the Blockchain, where they help learners to discover their passion (via their globally award winning AI driven MIIT Screening:

Multiple Intelligence and Interest Test: www.edubuk.co.in/mitest), get relevantly skilled in emerging technologies and extra-curricular skilling (via their skilling platform www.edubuk.com) and convert their passion into a profession with a Job assistance in sync with learner’s verified and tamper proof Edubuk profile on the Blockchain (https://rwwqvzq9zydg.usemoralis.com/).

Edubuk’s model is patent published (process patent) in India (as it was in the top 20% of inventions) using AI & Blockchain combined together in Edtech.

At this seed stage, with 9 B2B tie-ups with educational companies, Edubuk is looking to access more than 40 million students in India, UAE and Egypt. Edubuk is also a part of 2 accelerator programs: Govt of Telangana and NASSCOM’s first AI accelerator: Revvup, 2021 and Newchip accelerator (Texas based accelerator).

Edubuk is recognized as top startups making an impact and is award winning in various startup competitions conducted by MIT University, Harvard University in the US; IIT Bombay, IIM Calcutta, IIT Kharagpur, NASSCOM, TiE Delhi, TiE Mumbai in India, Govt of Telangana, BSE, AWS Edstart among other reputed organizations globally.

Edubuk has won several awards and got recognition globally (as top 10 Startups making an impact) from HubWeek (hosted by Harvard and MIT University); IIT Bombay, IIM Calcutta, Government of India, Government of Dubai (AIM Startup), Hyderabad Software Enterprise Association (HYSEA); NASSCOM (Info. Tech Governing Body in India); TiE Mumbai, TiE Delhi; Lead Angel Network; T-Hub (State Government Accelerator in India); Bombay Stock Exchange (Impact Startups); SR Innovation Exchange and other reputed organizations.

Edubuk has recently got a grant approved from Polygon DAO Ecosystem in a completely decentralized decision making from people across the world, which further validates Edubuk’s blockchain solution and project!

Tell us about yourself?

Shivani Mehrotra is a University Topper from Lucknow University in her Masters of Business Economics course. She has qualified the UGC NET exam in Management and Economics. She has taught more than 10,000 students in the last 8 years as an Assistant Professor in NAAC Grade “A” colleges in Lucknow, Bangalore and Hyderabad.

She also holds a diploma in Child Education and Applied Psychology. She has been awarded Top 30 Young Indian award by Birla TMT Steel for her contribution in the Education & Training field. She has written several research papers on the model of Edubuk in national and international conferences held in India.

Apoorva is a graduate from IIT Dhanbad and IIM Kozhikode (Gold Medalist). He is a CFA Charterholder with 8 years of work experience in the Investment Management industry with Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, D.E. Shaw.

He has also completed Business Analytics (using AI & ML) course from ISB Hyderabad. He is passionate about Education and has done side gigs to teach tech and finance to students. He likes coding and is skilled at Python for Machine Learning (AI) and Solidity for Blockchain.

If you could go back in time a year or two, what piece of advice would you give yourself?

I would have launched Edubuk quickly and would have been able to help 100,000 users by now. But going forward, I am sure Edubuk will achieve this mission within next 12 months.

What problem does your business solve?

54% of India’s 1.3 billion population is below 25 years of age: >90% of Indian Students are Confused about Career Choices as there are No Scientific or Logical basis to choose a Relevant Career Path in sync with Student’s Interest, Intelligence type and Passion. Only traditional career paths like becoming an engineer, doctor, mba, ca, ias etc are not sustainable in a digital world driven by new-age alternative earning opportunities. Skillsets required to earn are not taught in institutes leading to a 45-year high unemployment rate in India.

We help students to explore alternative career path opportunities as there has been Significant Expansion in Career Opportunities in last decade driven by digitally interconnected global economy like: Cloud-Architect Cybersecurity-Analyst VR/Metaverse-Developer; Data-Scientist; Youtuber; Blogger; Social-Media & Digital-Marketer; Content-Writer Ethical-Hacker; UI/UX-designers; Stock-Trader; Blockchain-Developer; Singer-Actor-Dancer EV/Batteries Engg; Mental-Health-Professional, Comedian, among other career paths etc.

What is the inspiration behind your business?

While interacting with 100,000 students across 25 institutes in India, we realized that they are not really interested in what they are studying.

Their passion lies elsewhere. They don’t have the right direction to achieve a profession of their liking, hence we created Edubuk! India’s biggest entrepreneurs like Narayan Murthy (founder of Infosys); Azim Premji (Founder of Wipro) and CEO of Tech Mahindra: they all have commented several times in last 1 year that more than 90% of Indian engineers are not employable as they lack skills that are required in the IT industry.

Apoorva is a topper from the education system in India (from 2 best colleges in India in his Bachelors and Masters course) and Shivani is an Assistant Professor and has taught close to 10,000 students in 3 reputed colleges in 3 cities in India.

Hence she has domain expertise in the education sector. Apoorva & Shivani both are highly passionate about Education sector and want to do something to rectify the current worrisome situation in the Indian Education industry where 90% of the youngsters are educated and graduated on paper but unfortunately are not employable.

It is also a known fact that Indian youngsters choose their career path(s) either by peer pressure or by parents wishes and they only consider a few choices like becoming an Engineer, Doctor, MBA, IAS or a CA.

Our end to end solution of Edubuk helps these youngsters first to discover their passion, intelligence type, interests, talent and then map it with relevant career paths (a buffet of 45-60 career path options for each individual); narrow these 60 options to 1-2 options (using our automated 6 metrics counselling tool); get themselves relevantly skilled (using our Customized Learning Plans) and finally get the most relevant job out there in the market using their Edubuk profile credentials.

This amazing end to end Individualized Learning and Earning model of Edubuk is the need of the hour and hence it is not surprising why it has won so many awards at international and national level from various reputed organizations across the globe. Also, people are paying for our solutions already and hence we are reasonably confident we have created a sustainable solution here: something that people want and are paying for. Our customers like our solution offerings and think it is really useful for them.

What is your magic sauce?

Creating a Full Stack Skilling Ecosystem using AI & Blockchain (Patent Published) is our USP & Competitive Edge. Learner Stays in Edubuk’s Ecosystem from Passion Discovery till Finding a Job or an Earning Opportunity with Lifelong Access to Community of Leaners and Earners! New National Education Policy: Tailwind for the business going forward: focus on Co & Extra-Curricular, Emerging Technologies Skilling + merger of 3 streams: which will create challenge for parents & students to choose most relevant subjects + Govt. OK to issue Edu-Certificates on Blockchain. Career Guidance platforms like Lodestar, Mindler are competitors for MIIT Screening; Front Row, Unluclass are competitors on the extra-curricular skilling and Skillmax is our collaborator on the emerging technologies skilling platform. Truscholar is the competitor on the Blockchain based Edubuk profile for skill verification (we are on the public Poylgon blockchain vs Tru scholar is on the private blockchain using IBM Hyperledger).

All of our competitors just don’t get the fact that: there are job profiles and career path(s) available outside of becoming an Engineer, a Doctor, a MBA, a CA (Finance professional): i.e. not every job profile and career path needs a Logical Mathematical Intelligence or Linguistic Intelligence. There are career opportunities available in becoming a singer, musician, dancer, actor, painter, sportsperson, graphic designer and a host of other options.

We at Edubuk helps youngsters to discover their passion in all the fields (including and apart from STEM field). As we believe and have seen practically that all individuals are great at some type of intelligence (it can be Interpersonal, Spatial Visual, Bodily Kinesthetic, Musical, Intrapersonal, Naturalistic, Existential are also included).

Also, all of our competitors do just the psychometric assessments and do not suggest Customized Learning or Customized Skilling plans to help the youngsters in acquiring skill-sets require to achieve their career paths. These 10-15-20 year old companies are not reinventing themselves and looking beyond the Science-Maths-Language Boundaries. Hence, we see rising joblessness in India which is at a 45 year high! We are here to fix it.

What is the plan for the next 5 years? What do you want to achieve?

Every student of India should have an Edubuk profile on the Blockchain in order to record their intelligence type, interest type, career paths, credits & grades, transcripts, degrees, internships, skillsets: all of them in a verified manner.

This blockchain profile will help the learner’s and students land up in their dream jobs which is in sync with their heart, mind, passion, interest, skills and Edubuk profile: Job Search Made Easy and Made Employee Centric!

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?

Dearth of Blockchain developers in Indian market, Parents and Students have to be educated that there are career paths outside of becoming an engineer, doctor, mba, ca, ias, lawyer and the new-age alternative career path opportunities should be explored as well.

How do people get involved/buy into your vision?

We want students from grade 5 (age 10+) till college level (age 24+) to reach out to us at [email protected] and join our Discord server here: https://discord.gg/mW9GpaS6Qh
Also we are open to collaborate with other edtech, skilltech companies as this is a huge opportunity in which we all can grow together profitably, keeping the students and their benefits at the centre of the conversation.

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