Universities deliberate for higher autonomy during 'North Zone Vice Chancellors' Meet'

| Updated: Dec 24, 2016 13:59 IST

Noida (Uttar Pradesh) [India], Dec. 24 (ANI): The two day 'North Zone Vice Chancellors' Meet', which witnessed the participation of more than 90 vice chancellors from various universities of Northern India, concluded yesterday at Amity University Campus in Noida, Uttar Pradesh, with emphatic suggestions by vice chancellors varying from greater autonomy for universities to increase in budgetary allocation for higher education, the need to encourage FDI in higher education, outcome based learning approach and strengthening research and development infrastructure in universities. The Association of Indian Universities (AIU) organized the meet on "Celebrating Success in Higher Education- Best Practices" from December 22-23, which was hosted by Amity University, Noida. The valediction was graced by Dr. R P Singh- Secretary General, Quality Council of India who stressed upon the need to focus upon learning more rather than just teaching and averred that faculty members might be teaching lot of things but it is necessary to ponder if students are being enriched and enlightened by their teaching. "Today's youth has realized that there is more to learn outside than in classes and stressed that it is important to differentiate between teaching and teaching for learning. He remarked that there is a huge pool of knowledge but how much students learn or absorb, faculty members need to keep their eyes and ears open," he said. He emphasized upon the need for young faculty members to be trained mentors in order to understand the nuances of learning. He called upon the academicians to discuss futuristic models of teaching during such meets to put Indian higher education system on high growth trajectory. During the valediction, IAU Officials laid stress on more participation of the MHRD officials in zonal meets and the conclusions to be presented to MHRD for implementation. Sharing feedback of the two-day meet during the valediction, Lt. Gen. (Retired) Zameeruddin Shah- Vice Chancellor, Aligarh Muslim University, appreciated the discussions and deliberations by noted academicians which updated the participating vice chancellors with the best practices followed by their peers and suggest solutions to the problems faced by them in various domains. Referring to a profound thought by Charlie Chaplin, he stated, "Don't educate your children to be rich but educate them to be happy so that they value the things. He averred that AIU must be taken seriously by the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) and the latter should not bombard vice chancellors with two to three instructions every day. The inauguration was preceded by technical sessions on contemporary topics. Prof. (Dr.) J.L. Kaul, Vice Chancellor, HNBGU University, Srinagar, said that since independence, higher education in the country has witnessed sea change in terms of enrolment and resources being spent but at the end of the day, outcome based approach is lacking in higher education system. He remarked that by 2030, India will usher itself in a new paradigm in terms of education, entrepreneurship and R and D based excellence. New jobs would be high end and highly specialized and Indian education system has to gear up to nurture manpower for the same. He stressed that all the higher educational institutions across the country unanimously need greater autonomy and more resources to step up their performance and meet the surging needs of India's vibrant economy. He remarked that education in the country is most over- legislative and regulated segment and if there is any progress despite of such contradictions, then it needs to be acknowledged and celebrated. Prof. Meeraj Ud Din Mir- Vice Chancellor, Central University of Kashmir, Srinagar remarked that the non-listing of Indian universities amongst the top 100 global universities is most often debated and discussed at length on several platforms, overshadowing the achievements or accomplishments of Indian higher education. Prof. Meer stressed that the Indian Higher Education needs higher budgetary allocation, conducive R and D culture and faculty members who teach on the basis of their research, which could be applied for societal welfare. Dr. R.S. Grewal, Vice Chancellor, Chitkara University, Himachal Pradesh, called for a serious approach to deal with maladies affecting higher education. He advocated the need to change the outlook towards the teaching profession, which is generally taken very lightly across the country. He suggested that in colleges and universities, knowledge sharing by faculty members must be acknowledged and rewarded, which will eventually promote excellence in higher education sector in the country. Dr. Sanjay Srivastava, Vice Chancellor, Manav Rachna University, Faridabad stressed upon the need for colleges and universities to enhance the employability index of the students by working on their communication skills so that they can convey and translate what they have learnt in their classrooms. He called upon the universities and colleges to adopt outcome based learning approach. While comparing the functioning of public sector universities with private sector, Prof. H.L. Verma, Vice Chancellor, Jagannath University, Bahadurgarh, Haryana said public sector universities get funds from the government, whereas private ones use student fees for fund generation. He stressed that in country like India, affordability of education in self- financing private institutions is most often discussed. Therefore, there is a need to devise alternate, innovative ways of financing the institutions since adequate finance is must for growth and quality education. He stressed that there is a difference between education and higher education since the aim of the education is to empower the person against ignorance and the objective of higher education is to promote skills and the benefits are internalized, therefore, higher education needs to be self-financing. The need of the hour for universities is to be innovative and explore further the new methods of generating funds and even the government support is expected to decline in coming years, making it imperative for state and government universities to generate funds from other sources. Prof. Mushahid Husain, Vice Chancellor, MJP Rohilkhand University, Bareilly, while sharing his views stressed that use of ICT is good in higher education but its excess is hampering scientific temper in the students. He elaborated that students with science background have started doing more of computer based simulations and modelling based research; they are just doing computations which to some extent is also due to the dearth of good laboratories in the country. He remarked that unless there are enough good laboratories in the country in the country, India cannot produce technocrats and scientists. (ANI)
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