Interview by Pratyasha
Dr. Vijaykumar Pandharinath Wani is currently designated as the Principal of MET Institute of Engineering. His education qualifications include Graduation, M.Tech, and Ph.D. He is an experiential scholar and has published 12 National and 24 International research papers in many reputed journals.
He has work experience of almost 30 years and has held responsibilities in various capacities. Additionally, he was an Editorial Board Member for International Journals of repute viz. World Journal of Organizational Dynamics" and “Asia Journal of Entrepreneurship and Sustainability”.
In an exclusive interview with collegedunia.com, Dr. Wani talks about his view on education industry and what makes his Institute best out of all.
Experience in the Education Industry
The education industry is responsible for the sustainable growth and development of a nation. Being in this industry for so many years, I have helped a lot of students reaching heights. It has not only assisted in my growth as a human being but also changed my perspective.
With increasing trends, there is no doubt that some commercial aspects have taken place in it. We have to look towards the education segment as a mission rather than a profession. One should not aim to get only a degree but to enlighten their core values as well.
Role of technical institutions in developing a techno-entrepreneurial environment
Technical institutions have substantial intellectual potential; the question is that we have to inculcate it for taking up industry-oriented problems and sort it out at different levels. This can be helpful in building confidence between academia and industry.
At my institute, students are trying to go through the real industrial problems of SMEs in their Minor/Major Projects and give viable solutions for this segment. This is quite helpful in getting solutions to industry at reasonable cost and academia getting industry exposure and building confidence among both sides.
Dr.Wani has a Decentralised Philosophy
One cannot define leadership in terms of title, position or hierarchy only. It is about one individual, who influence others for moving towards the vision and mission of an organization. In my case, I believe in the decentralization of the process for better results wherein everyone has some responsibility towards the institute.
I motivate my colleagues to make their own decisions. This will not only help in total involvement but also build confidence among all. This type of philosophy aims to motivate and accommodates flexibility in the team members as well.
Hurdles faced at the Institute
With the advent of technological advancements, the foremost challenge is to attract and retain the employable professional position. There is a good chance for India to become a manufacturing hub in the coming years. For this, we will require more advanced and innovative learning tools to accommodate the expansion in the education sector.
Earlier, we needed to inculcate the students for application-oriented research and on entrepreneurial path. But today, students have initiated business ventures themselves by creating a conducive environment.
Accomplishments and Plans for the Institute
With the inception of the institute i.e. 12 years back, I can proudly say that I have accomplished a lot. The Institute has seen horizontal as well as vertical growth in physical and academic segment as well. MET has been accredited at a National Level and we are targeting for recognition by ABET.
Being affiliated to SavitribaiPhule Pune University, Pune, our curriculum is common for all the institutes. However, through internships, industry visits, sessions of industry experts, and industry-oriented minor and major projects, my students are well acquainted with the industry practices. So, we ensure that the entire curriculum or syllabi fall well in line with the University as well as the industry standards.
Increasing competition has resulted in a tough race where the fittest will survive. For this, we have introduced a mentor system for the students at the institute. There are different sessions/workshops according to the latest trends in the industry. We organise special sessions to discuss various perspectives and prospects of engineering and the role of student in getting themselves employable.
Methods opted to maintain a positive culture
The institute has students coming from different geographical, religious, and cultural background. With this, it becomes important to look after everyone while maintaining a professional culture as well. To achieve the same, students are aligned in a group from the very start. Also, students are motivated to participate in MET Utsav Programme. This helps them to get acclimatized with the diverse culture of the institute.
Even, the Institute has a practice of conducting Prelims examination which helps the students to overcome their phobia of University Examination. There is also a separate counselor, who is taking care of the counseling, helping them to get more aware of the professional culture.
Placement Opportunities at MET Knowledge City
Placement is an undergoing process in an educational institute. To maintain the global standard, it is important to incorporate appropriate skills and techniques. At MET, problem based learning approach is adopted, resulting in better understanding among the students.
Read about MET Institute of Engineering Placement
The process ultimately results in the enhancement of employability. Since last few years, the Institute has successfully placed 70 - 80 percent of students with reputed companies and an average of 12 to 15 students per year are going to the USA/UK/Germany for higher studies.
Building relationship with the students
I follow an open-door policy in the Institute wherein any student can come and discuss their grievances with me. In case of a problem among students, respective Class Coordinator is appointed from the very start to solve it at the department/institute level.
Suggestions to the young generation
The purpose of education is not only employment, rather widening the vision towards life. One should pick their career according to their passion and dream. Lord Krishna has said that, if you don’t take effort for what you want, then don’t cry for what you have lost. Build a dream and it will build you.