'Social transformation through dynamic education'

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Social transformation through dynamic education
Prof. Dr. Mahajan, Director, Intl. Students Centre

Bharati Vidyapeeth Deemed University is one of the largest multi-campus, multi-disciplinary institutions of higher education in India

By Our Correspondent

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Published: Mon 14 Aug 2017, 6:00 PM

Last updated: Mon 14 Aug 2017, 8:00 PM

Dr. Patangraoji Kadam, a renowned educationist and visionary, realised that social transformation can be brought about only through education. He established Bharati Vidyapeeth in 1964 when he was hardly 19 years old, with the motto to usher in "Social transformation through dynamic education". Bharati Vidyapeeth had a humble beginning. Today, in a span of more than 50 years, it has grown up remarkably and has 189 institutions imparting education from Pre-Primary to Doctoral level. It has nearly 80 schools and 60 institutions of higher education, including those of professional education. 
Dr. Kadam visualised the possibility of developing Bharati Vidyapeeth into an independent university and included it as an objective in its constitution in 1964 itself. His dream was realised when the Government of India accorded the status of Deemed to be University to a group of institutions of Bharati Vidyapeeth in 1996.
Today, the University is one of the largest multi-campus, multi-disciplinary institutions of higher education in the country having 29 constituent institutions located in eight sprawling campuses which together offer more than 280 academic programmes in 12 disciplines.
The University boasts of 1,700 faculty members, 2,000 supporting staff, more than 25,000 degree candidates from all over India and more than 47 nations of the world, and with a matching world-class infrastructure that caters to the needs of its faculty and students. 
The University has world-class infrastructure, which includes state-of-the-art laboratories with the latest equipment, large classrooms, well enriched libraries, computer and Internet facilities and impressive well designed buildings.
It uses modern Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) in teaching and learning. Its national and international status is also reflected in the cultural diversity amongst students, with more than 1,600 international students from 47 countries. 
The academic environment at the university promises the freedom to work creatively, and to grow personally as well as professionally. It provides necessary resources that are usually available only at world-class universities.
The university has introduced many examination reforms including the Choice Based Credit System (CBCS) in various academic programmes in line with the guidelines of the governmental regulatory bodies of the country.
It has many academic memorandum of understanding (MoU) with notable national and international universities across the world. Students as well as faculty members go on exchange programmes; for the students, the credits they acquire abroad are taken into account in their Indian programme.
During the last 20 years of its existence, the University has made tremendous progress on all counts and achieved a high level of excellence with respect to global benchmarks. It has comprehensively demonstrated its excellence in research, teaching, academic staff, facilities, communications, leadership and governance and has been awarded 'A+' grade in its 3rd round of accreditation in 2017 by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC), the regulatory authority to assess and accredit institutions of Higher Education in the country. 
It has been recognised as "A" grade university by the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD), Government of India. The University Grants Commission has recognised it under section 12(B) of the UGC Act, 1956. The university has been enlisted among the 100 best universities in the country as per the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) instituted by the MHRD. 
"We are committed to make available quality education in different areas of knowledge to students as per their choices and inclinations," explains Prof. Dr. Shivajirao Kadam, Pro Chancellor, Bharati Vidyapeeth Deemed University. "We want to create an ambience with enriched infrastructure and academic facilities in our campuses conducive for academic pursuits."
Prof. Kadam points out that the university includes colleges of Medicine, Dentistry, Ayurveda, Homeopathy, Nursing, Pharmacy, Engineering, Management, Hotel Management & Catering Technology and Environment Science. 
The university has established three specialised research institutes in the areas of Health Related Sciences, Applied Chemistry and Social Sciences to promote research activities and to create a research culture on its campuses.
According to him, the university has campuses in several cities including Pune, New Delhi, Solapur, Kolhapur, Sangli and Karad.
Prof. M.M. Salunkhe, an academician of repute, who has recently taken over as Vice Chancellor of the university, says that the university conducts courses which are placement oriented and which are innovative in nature. 
"It is very important to have a dynamic curriculum development programme," he says. "In all our processes, we take into account the job potential of a programme, its internationalisation and its future prospects as well."
Prof. Salunkhe believes, virtual and augmented reality will change the educational landscape. According to him, innovation is the buzzword at
the university. 
"Students are tech-savvy and well-prepared these days, so we have to change our teaching methodology," he points out. It will be a collaborative type of teaching, there will be more discussions in the classrooms and flexible assignments will accommodate multiple learning styles." 
Dynamism is the key word in education, he adds. "One has to change the methodology of education as per the need and that's the best way to tap the untapped potential of the students. In present times, the use of 'new education pedagogy' is needed and such techniques are being taken care of by the university."
The university is also trying to develop more Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC). It also has a lecture capturing system for students who have missed classes.
Prof. Dr. Keerti Nilesh Mahajan, Director, International Students' Centre at the university, points out that many Engineering, Management and Nursing students go abroad for a semester. 
"We have collaborated with international universities in the U.S., Canada, Europe and Southeast Asia, etc," she says. "Internationalisation of higher education is a pervasive force, shaping and challenging the higher education sector. Countries all over the world are embracing the importance of the international dimension of higher education and developing policies and priorities in response to the new demands and opportunities stimulated by globalisation," she says.
The university has prepared an informative website (www.bvuniversity.edu).  "Students and parents should have a firsthand look at our campuses and facilities, through the website," she adds. The university also provides health services to the students, with twice a year health check-ups. 
"Many of the students from the Gulf are NRIs," explains Prof. Mahajan. "We participate in many educational exhibitions in Dubai, including the Gulf Education & Training Exhibition (GETEX), and get a good response from students and their parents."
Exhibitions such as GETEX enable NRIs, UAE nationals and other foreigners to understand the quality of the participating institutions and decide on which one to send their students to, she adds.
The strategy of modernisation and reform from within is being consistently advanced, and the university's "success story" is something that all members cherish. The consistent expansion of its strengths, innovative concepts and ideas has contributed significantly to the success of Bharati Vidyapeeth Deemed University.

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