Posts filed under ‘Upcoming Universities’
Following report is from the Sambad:
BHUBANESWAR: In an apparent bid to pacify the ongoing agitation demanding establishment of an IIM in western Odisha, the state government today announced setting up an open university at Sambalpur.
The announcement in this regard was made by Higher Education Minister Pradeep Panigrahi in the assembly today.
“The proposed open university at Sambalpur will be first of its kind in the state. Therefore, its impact and jurisdiction will be vast,” Panigrahi said.
Panigrahi said, “The state government has already made provision of Rs 35 crore for establishment and infrastructure of the proposed open university.”
Besides contributing to progress of higher education, the open university would facilitate distance education, continuous training and research for students and teachers.
The open university would also help a large number of students, drop-outs and provide need-based quality education in the backward and tribal-dominated districts of the state, Panigrahi said.
He said the varsity at Sambalpur also reflected the state government’s steps to eradicate regional imbalance in Odisha.
The people of western Odisha, particularly the residents of Sambalpur have been agitating since a long time demanding establishment of the proposed IIM for the state in their region. However, the state government decided to locate the proposed IIM in Bhubaneswar which led to intensification of agitation in Sambalpur.
Bhubhaneswar-based Xavier’s Institute of Management (XIMB) is in the process of turning into a university soon, its Director Fr PT Joseph, SJ tells PaGaLGuY. In this interview, he also speaks about the curriculum changes the institute is planning for its Post Graduate Diploma in Management (PGDM) and the PGDM Rural Management courses.
What changes can the incoming batch of 2013 look forward to benefitting from at XIMB?
From the point of view of the fulltime programme students, we will be revising the curriculum a little bit next year. Apart from that, although it doesn’t directly affect PGDM or PGDM(RM) students, but we have started a 1-year advanced management programme on Resettlement and Rehabilitation and Corporate Social Responsibility for 15 executives of Uttarakhand’s Tehri Hydro Development Corporation. This along with our other initiatives in the rural management and social sector will continue to be under focus in the coming year.
Are you looking at an increase in intake for any of the the two-year programmes?
We were looking at expansion in the number of seats but the proposal hasn’t gone past AICTE’s regulations. But we may become a university soon and therefore increase intake from a university perspective. That process might take one or two months to finalize, but we are in the process of becoming a university.
Would that mean that the PGDM degrees would be offered as full-fledged MBA degrees under the XIMB University?
The PGDM will still remain as an AICTE-approved course, it may not become a university degree for now. But after we get university status we may start some other type of programmes under the university. Right now we have gotten the government sanction of Rs 10 crores and are involved with acquiring the necessary land for the University in Sambalpur. Until land is acquired, which is priority for now, we aren’t in a position to share more details.
What is XIMB’s faculty strength now and how are you thinking about expanding it?
As of now we are 55 in total. One more is joining in December and another two may join in January 2011. We hire faculty whenever we come across somebody good. For example, one of the faculty joining next is a Cornell University PhD with lots of experience. Another person in the recruitment process has worked in Netherlands and has a PhD from Korea.
What kind of curriculum changes are you going to make in the PGDM and PGDM(RM) courses before the next batch joins?
We have already started a new course on Environment and Sustainability which is mandatory for all the 180 PGDM students. There’s another mandatory course on Emotional quotient and Leadership. Next, we are planning a meeting of all the faculty on the January 12, 2011. Before that meeting, a committee is preparing the background papers by looking at changes in the global and Indian economy. Only after the January 12 meeting will a clear picture emerge about the exact changes.
But speaking in general, we’ve been teaching management that is too bifurcated by specialization in our view. As you know, students choose to go for either marketing or finance or other specializations during the course. We are having a feeling that there should be some integration between these specializations by changing their content and give each course a holistic approach. For example, we know that there is a good market for inkjet printer cartridges. But inkjet cartridge production also generates a large amount of waste and affects the environment. So when we teach either of marketing or production management, we need to also bring awareness of sustainability in and show how both marketing and production are linked. If we can do this, we will not only make better managers but also better human beings. Apart from that, we would like to increase our connection with the bottom of the pyramid. We have a very strong programme in which all 180 PGDM students went and stayed in villages for 3 days. We want to increase their exposure to bottom of the pyramid and to leadership. We would also like to focus on ways to increase mentoring from faculty and senior students.
What are your thoughts on b-schools changing their admission policy to reduce the number of engineers in the batch?
This is something we tried to do last year already. We wanted to bring down the number of engineers and increase the batch diversity by taking in students from other backgrounds. But unfortunately all the students who are getting good grades in XAT were engineers and we could not reduce their number last year. But we’ll continue to give quantitative ability lesser weightage compared to verbal and commnication skills and try to reduce the number of engineers.
Looking at the Indian scenario, I would prefer 60% engineers and 40% non-engineers ideally in the XIMB batches. The job market requirements are still such that the engineering background is preferred so we cant reduce it too much.
We have traditionally seen what an engineer-driven MBA job market looks like. But in your view what scope do non-engineers with an MBA degree have in the market?
Only the product marketing, production and manufacturing companies need people to necessarily have engineering backgrounds. But the remaining type of jobs, that is finance, human resources, some types of marketing and market research, advertising are areas that do not really require engineers.
People of Kalahandi are grateful to the Naveen Patnaik Government for having granted establishment of two professional institutions for the first time. Retired professor of Sambalpur University Gopabandhu Behera, in his letter to the Chief Minister, has lauded his initiative to set up institutions in this backward part of the State.
Never before had the Government started any institution of higher education of its own, said Prof Behera. People of Kalahandi have set up all institutions on their own despite their hand-to-mouth financial conditions. This shows people’s participation was always there.
However, the people are not able to establish institutions like university and management institutes. Prof Behera reminds that leading persons of Kalahandi had moved for establishment of a central university in the district. But the Chief Minister was good enough to point out that since he had already committed to Koraput district for establishment of this university he would sanction other institutions for Kalahandi.
The Task Force on Higher Education has recommended establishment of a South Western Odisha (SWO) University at the Kalahandi district headquarters town of Bhawanipatna.
Prof Behera says that if one examines objectively, he will find that Bhawanipatna is another centre like Bhubaneswar waiting for development. The recommendation of the Task Force can be implemented phase-wise. Hence, establishment of a university at Bhawanipatna has to be undertaken in the first phase. If a suitable Officer on Special Duty (OSD) is appointed, the university can flourish, observes Prof Behera.
Prof Digambara Patra, a leading non-resident Odia (NRO) has also all along been batting for this university in Bhawanipatna.
Orissa Chief Minister disfavor Kalahandi for central Government institution;conflicting report about Indira Gandhi National Tribal University
Note: As per the information provided to Prof. Gopa Bandhu Behera there was a meeting towards the end of April (probably April 22, 2010) in Amarkantak/Bhopal favoring for a campus of IGNTU Amarkantak in Kalahandi, however, following news report says for similar campus in Phulbani. It seems as usual Orissa Chief Minister is not in favor of Kalahandi for any central Government institution.
Naveen demands special tag for KBK
Tathya.in, May 11, 2010
Naveen Patnaik has renewed his demand for a Special Category Status for the state in a different way.
Odisha Chief Minister asked Kapil Sibal to accord ‘Special Category Status’ for 11 districts included in the KBK region and Left Wing Extremism (LWE) affected Areas for the Schemes of Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD).
Mr.Patnaik and Union Minister for HRD held one-to-one discussion here on 11 May on various developmental issue on HRD Sector.
It came to light that the Union Government has favored for the establishment of a Regional Centre of Indira Gandhi National Tribal University (IGNTU) in Odisha.
This was also revealed by Mr.Sibal that Centre has recommended the proposal of the State Government to IGNTU for a Regional Centre at Phulbani.
Mr.Patnaik reminded Union Minister HRD that Odisha is yet to get World Class University declared by MHRD in 2008, after lapse of 2 years.
Mr.Sibal said that now World Class University is rephrased as “Innovation University” and is under active consideration of the Union Government.
In the meeting Mr.Patnaik, discussed various issues of concern for the development of ‘Human Resource’ in the State, particularly in the context of Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RCFCE) Act 2009, Vocational Training and Higher Education.
Chief Minister informed the Union Minister that Orissa, during recent years, has made concerted efforts for improving the educational infrastructure at all levels and for enhancing the technical skills and capabilities of its human resource, with the objective to sustain the development and industrialization process in the State.
He appreciated the support extended by the Union Ministry and emphasized that the magnitude of the task faced by the State has suddenly increased manifold primarily on account of RCFCE Act and the additional requirement of trained and technically qualified manpower necessitated by the on-going industrialization process.
Chief Minister impressed upon the Union Minister that about half of the State is covered by KBK Region and Left Wing Extremism (LWE) affected areas, which have extremely high concentration of the vulnerable population including SCs & STs and the problem is accentuated by the fact that this vulnerable population is dispersed in scattered remote villages.
He emphasized that vulnerable population in these areas require some serious special efforts and there is therefore a strong and justified need to treat KBK/LWE area in the State at par with North Eastern States and other Hill States, for the purpose of all Schemes of MHRD.
Chief Minister requested the Union Minister to consider and approve following specific requests of the State, on priority:
Approve Central-State share in the ratio of 90:10 to implement the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RCFCE) Act 2009 at least for two plan periods
Sanction all ‘school buildings’ and ‘additional class rooms’ as per the requirement of RCFCE Act during 2010-11.
Consider allotting 1/3rd Central share as envisaged under the Scheme for new colleges for up-gradation of existing colleges in 18 low Gross Enrolment Ratio(GER) districts as part of the Model College Scheme
Provide assistance for upgrading Model Degree Colleges in Districts having low Gross Enrollment Ratio (GER) in higher education
Sanction new Vocational Junior Colleges and strengthen existing Vocational Colleges
Union Minister appreciated the efforts being made by the State to develop its human resource and for efficiently utilizing the Central Government funds.
Mr.Sibal informed that the Union Government was in the process to finalize the arrangement of sharing of funds required to enforce Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RCFCE) Act 2009.
He assured that efforts will be made to minimize the burden on the State.
He advised that the State should take advantage of the Central Scheme for setting up new Degree Colleges in 18 Low Gross Enrolment Ratio Districts.
For developing playgrounds, Union Minister appreciated the suggestion of the State and assured to take up the matter with Ministry of Rural Development to include these under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA).
New Delhi, May 11 (IANS) The environment ministry Tuesday put on hold construction of the Rs.150 billion Vedanta University in Orissa by the Anil Agarwal Foundation following complaints of irregularities.
The ministry said it had received information alleging irregularities and “illegal, unethical and unlawful deeds” by the foundation.
It said serious objections raised during the Orissa Coastal Zone Management Authority meeting were not appropriately considered while granting coastal regulation zone (CRZ) and environmental clearances.
“The above issues are relevant and important and predict a detailed examination. I have been directed to inform you that the environmental and CRZ clearances issued on April 16, 2010 shall be kept in abeyance till a final decision in the matter is taken by the ministry,” said Bharat Bhushan, director in the ministry, in a letter to the foundation.
The ministry asked the company not to proceed with any construction or development works till a detailed examination of all the issues raised are examined by its Expert Appraisal Committee.
The Anil Agarwal foundation is promoted by NRI billionaire and chairman of Vedanta Resources, Anil Agarwal.
It has proposed to set up the multi-disciplinary Vedanta University over 6,000 acres of land near the Konark-Puri marine drive, some 60 km from the state capital Bhubaneswar.
This not-for-profit university has been envisaged as one-of-its-kind institution for quality higher education and cutting-edge research in 95 disciplines for 100,000 students.
Following letter was sent to firstname.lastname@example.org:
When an incredible and elegant solution stares you in your face, you have to be completely dysfunctional and utterly intellectually challenged not to take it. Yet this is the current situation about location of Vedanta University. Locating the university in the vicinity of Lanjigarh solves several problems at one stroke, yet sixty milers want to locate it near Puri. Incredible.
It will be good,very good, for the entire KBK region,particularly for the large number of Adivashis will sacrifice not only their home and hearth, but their way of life. They being largely illiterate and possessing no marketable skills, they will be disoriented and will have insurmountable difficulties to carve out a new life with the few rupees they will get in exchange for their habitat. With an institution of the size proposed, there will be good job opportunities. Hopefully the institution will spawn a variety of ancillary industries, and other institutions which can give them good chance of a good alternate livelihood.
KBK has been a sink hole where various large scale attempts that have been made to rehabilitate into a healthy society have just been failures and the vast amount of money simply disappears. Vedant University will be strong and reliable anchor in the community which will automatically attract various infrastructures which the entire region so desperately needs. A critical mass of literate and sophisticated population will develop because of adjacent Central University in Koraput, and thus a new nucleus of educational excellence will be generated. And some day, the kids of those displaced Adivashis may be managers of Vedanta and other institutions. And civil servants who find all kinds of excuses not to be located,they will eagerly compete to be there.
Vedanta will benefit tremendously because its image of a ruthless destroyer of habitat of disadvantaged populace and mindless destroyer of environment; that image will change into a benevolent philanthropist and builder of healthy society. Mind you, it still has to be a good caretaker of the environment and has to actively engage to protect the sensitive ecology of the region. My feeling is that the local populace will actively cooperate with Vedanta to see that Vedanta becomes a successful profitable venture at the same time jointly engage in protecting the ecology.
The unnecessary confrontation between Vedanta on one side and environmentalists and displaced Adivashis can be avoided. Vedanta will emerge as a hero, and can serve as a role model for other mining enterprises. At the same time it will avoid confrontation with Puri-ites regarding land accumulation for building the university.
It will also be great for Orissa government. Many from Koshala or Western Orissa including me are very critical of Orissa government for over concentrating practically most human resource development activities in the vicinity of Bhubaneswar leaving rest of Orissa largely untouched. Location of Vedanta University in Kalahandi will be first good step to address the inequity, and hopefully this will be followed by similar gestures throughout Orissa away from the sixty mile strip. Location of Vedanta University will cost the government nothing. Cash strapped Orissa government has not been able to manage adequately the institutions of higher learning. Now it can focus in strengthening the existing ones. And the long neglected huge population of Adivashis,who are literally dying because the government has put their horrendous problems under the carpet, will have some ray of hope of good future.
Some argue that the decision of location of Vedanta university in Puri was the decision of Vedanta not Orissa government. But is the Orissa government is so weak that major educational development is surrendered to a industrial house ? With such a majority in the Orissa assembly, one would think that the government is full control of what happens in the state.
Therefore only conclusion one can derive from such decision is that Navin’s government is simply a regionalistic one dominated by self-centered “academics” and “intelligentsia” with no vision of overall development of Orissa; and this really the way they want. These self centered folks are not interested in reduction of inter-regional disparity, or are interested in rational solutions of the problems. They are simply engaged in rationalisation of the decisions which irrational in essence.
So do you think that wisdom will prevail, and Vedanta University will be located in Kalahandi after all ? Do not hold your breath. The change of status of dysfunctional to functional is not in the cards.
Professor Arjun Purohit,Kingston, Ontario, Canada