*Occasion was North Zone Vice Chancellors’(VCs) Annual Meet hosted first time in Jalandhar
*36 Vice Chancellors of AIU’s Member Universities of seven Indian states and union territories discussed enormously to have world class higher education in India
*AIU President & Vice Chancellor of Central Agricultural University Imphal, Prof SN Puri graced the occasion, with his special reach from Manipur
“Let our contemplation together maintain spirit of credibility of the Association:” Prof Puri exhorted from all the participating VCs
“Priority should be to prepare students as global citizens; putting them in jobs remains secondary”: Prof Puri
“LPU shall leave no stone unturned to be among top 200 universities of the world”: LPU VC Dr R Kanwar
Jalandhar: The highest level of academic Event in North India, AIU’s North Zone Vice Chancellors’(VCs) Annual Conference started, today, at LPU Campus. In the conference, 36 Vice Chancellors of AIU’s Member Universities of seven Indian states and union territories discussed to strategize reformation in Indian Higher Education. It is for the first time that the conference of such a stature happened in Doaba Region. Stretching to two days for four technical sessions, on the first day important issues related to present education scenario like ‘In-breeding issues in academia’ and ‘Shortage of Quality Faculty at Indian Universities & how to overcome this problem’ were discussed in elaboration. Two other sessions of ‘Academia- industry Interface’ & ‘Globalization’ will be followed up the next day. The conference commenced with the welcome of AIU President Prof SN Puri and other delegates by LPU Pro Chancellor Ms Rashmi Mittal.
While discussing for the success of universities, in relation to the issue of shortage of quality faculty, VCs wanted to prepare PhD students for future faculty jobs. On these lines, they wanted to have some of the best and brightest students to be attracted to PhD programs by offering good fellowships per month. In addition, it was also held that an encouraging environment and good policies should be created for faculty to do PhD part-time. VCs maintained that without quality faculty, quality teaching and research programmes imparting quality education will be the biggest challenge. VCs also discussed about mutual collaborations between universities to facilitate joint research, faculty development programs, joint conferences, workshops and joint research project proposals.
Addressing the assemblage of intellectuals, President AIU, Prof Puri touched and highlighted all the topics like quality education, faculty, funding, society, employability, academics, foreign education and sports. He held: “The great matter of concern in present education scenario is that good faculty is shying away from this profession.” For funding he laid stress that state governments should come forward for maintenance of infrastructure of Universities. Speaking about the choice of study programmes, he opined: “In India, more than 60% population is associated with agriculture or related profession. However, only 0.01% of all graduating students get degrees related to agriculture.” Following concrete data, he wanted that 200 more universities are needed to impart education to aspiring students for preferred vocational programmes. Having appreciation for all the participating VCs and Directors, he exhorted all of them: “Let our contemplation together maintain spirit of credibility of the Association.”
Thanking one and all present for the conference, LPU VC, Dr Ramesh Kanwar hoped to come out with key findings for the ushering problems in the education scenario. He also assured that following the solutions sought at the conference and with the co-operation of AIU member universities: “LPU would leave no stone unturned to be among top 200 universities of the world.” He specially thanked the President AIU for entrusting LPU to host such a magnanimous organization.