Indian Institute of Management, Udaipur was privileged to host Vinay Sheel Oberoi – Secretary, Department of Higher Education in the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) on 11th February.
The session began with a welcome address by IIMU Director, Professor Janat Shah where he laid a foundation for the speech to follow which circled around two broad ideas – the challenges facing the Indian education scenario and the expectations that society has from the current batches of MBA pursuers.
Oberoi began his speech, touching upon thoughts and expectations that coming to an institute such as IIMU fosters for him. Talking about IIMU, he appreciated the new Balicha campus and congratulated the students for being a part of a budding institute.
He mentioned that despite the large number of institutes in India, the current gross enrollment ratio remains at 24% which is much lower than other countries. The education system though, he says, has made strides through affirmative action and equity for those who are challenged in some way.
Further on, Oberoi congratulated students of IIMU, saying that it is a struggle and a difficult task to get to where they are today. However, it also brings with it greater responsibility. To iterate he said, it is not about what one is taking in terms of values from his family, peers, teachers and the society in general but about what one is giving back. Acknowledging diversity of massive manpower that India has, he talked about his own experiences, having stayed in various parts of India through his life.
Talking of the young population in India itself as a great opportunity, Oberoi mentioned that education is the best tool to create opportunities for Generation X. He expressed his concerns regarding the high dropout rate post middle school education across India. He mentioned three aspects that most global rankings primarily take into account – internationalization, research quality and impact, and of course the education being imparted.
Talking about some things that are important for an institution to compete at the global level, he said that education is not just about the infrastructure, or its quality, though it is still an important aspect. Appreciating the infrastructure of the institute, he said, if you want to compete globally then you need to input world class infrastructure.
Another area that matters according to Oberoi is Excellence – the thirst, search and quest for excellence. He said that if you bring the qualities of synergy, leadership and excellence together then the IIMU community and the institute will easily achieve their vision. Talking about IIMU as an institute of national importance, he said that such an institute is Accountable not only to the student or the administration but to the nation itself.
Addressing concerns of a PGP1 student regarding brain drain, he acceded to the world today as a globalized one which entails people travelling and settling abroad for work opportunities. However, he asked of the student community to remember that they are part of a great nation, despite being wherever they may be. He said that though they may be there because of their own hardwork but they are fortunate to be here today.
Talking of social responsibility as one of the core values that IIMU stands by, Director, Prof. Janat Shah, in his closing note, expressed giving back to the society as one quality that can set the institute apart. He thanked Vinay Sheel Oberoi for addressing the students of the institute and reiterated some action points, such as increasing the width and depth of managerial domains and accepting and harnessing internationalization, which are important for IIMU to compete at a global level.