GUWAHATI, April 23 - The University Grants Commission (UGC), Union Ministry of Human Resources Development (MHRD) and Gauhati University (GU) jointly hosted the regional conference for Central universities on the theme, �Leadership for Academic Excellence in Higher Education,� on April 20 and 21, stated a press release received here today.
This was the fourth conference in a series organised by the HRD Ministry in collaboration with the IIM, Raipur, for vice chancellors and other academic administrators of institutions of higher learning in India, the press release added.
The programme coordinator for the conference was Dr Satyasiba Das, assistant professor (Strategic Management), IIM, Raipur, while the local nodal officer was Professor BC Goswami, Director, UGC-Human Resource Development Centre, Gauhati University. The event was held in the newly-constructed state-of-the-art conference hall of the Institute of Science and Technology, Gauhati University.
The conference was attended by vice chancellors, pro-VCs, registrars, deans of student affairs, finance officers and other high-ranking university administrators from all the Central universities of the North East, including Sikkim.
The conference was inaugurated by a host of dignitaries, including Professor H Devraj, Vice Chairman, UGC, Ishita Roy, Joint Secretary (Higher Education), MHRD, Professor BS Sahay, founder Director of IIM, Raipur, Professor Prem Vrat, founder Director, IIT, Roorkee, Professor Shekhar Chaudhuri, former Director, IIM, Calcutta, and Dr Mridul Hazarika, Vice Chancellor of Gauhati University.
All the sessions saw vigorous discussions and interactions, where the heads of different Central universities of the North East and their representatives raised the problems unique to this area and ways of resolving recurrent issues, the press release stated.
Professor Prem Vrat delivered the keynote address, while the academic sessions were conducted by him and other eminent resource persons, including Professor Chaudhuri, Professor Ramadhar Singh, Distinguished Professor (OB&HRM), IIM, Bangalore, and Professor BS Madhukar, adviser, NAAC, Bangalore.
Prof BS Sahay welcomed the gathering by outlining the major themes on which the conference was being organised � visionary leadership in higher education, envisioning the future of higher education and vision to action. He stressed the importance of mutual learning and the need to create a clear vision for universities.
Speaking on the occasion, Prof H Devraj gave the background to the series of conferences held on this theme. He appreciated the ranking gained by the Tezpur University in this regard and considered it to be one of the models for universities in North East India.
In her speech, Ishita Roy, Joint Secretary (Higher Education), MHRD, reminded the participants of the three challenges facing higher education today � access, equity and quality. She stressed the importance of effective communication, awareness of regulations, and the role of academic institutions.
In the keynote address, Prof Prem Vrat highlighted the role of academic leadership for excellence in higher education.
In the next session on �Envisioning the Future: Developing Organisational Aspiration and Strategy for Growth,� Prof Shekhar Choudhuri, former Director, IIM, Calcutta, laid emphasis on not only ways of achieving organisational excellence but also sustaining it through constant analysis, democratic discussions among administrators and faculty members, and putting in transformational efforts. The last session of the first day was on the topic, �Between Assessments: Issues and Challenges,� led by Prof BS Madhukar, adviser, NAAC.
On the second day, Prof Ramadhan Singh, distinguished professor (OB&HRM), IIM, Bangalore, led a workshop on developing a culture to achieve academic excellence and innovation. In the last session of the second day on HR practices and the role of leadership, Prof Singh stressed the role of leadership in addition to teaching and research.