Interview by Sakshi Aggarwal
Dr. Ajay Pathak, Vice Chancellor ICFAI University, Tripura is a Ph.D from IIT Kharagpur from where he also acquired his engineering degree. He is a fellow of Cost and Management Accountants of India from ICAI, Kolkata. He has worked in senior positions in Banking Industry for 25 years. He is a Certified Associate of Indian Institute of Bankers and also a member of Economic Affairs, Finance & Taxation committee, Economic Research Cell at Confederation of Indian Industry, Kolkata.
He has been associated with ICFAI for last 15 years in several capacities. He has taught several subjects in the domain of finance and banking. He has published several research articles on Risk Management in various journals of repute. He has also edited several books on various topics ranging from pricing and branding of financial products, sovereign wealth funds and Asset Liability Management in Banks. He has conducted several Executive Development Programs for Corporate on Risk Management and Tax Management. He has also several consultancy assignments to his credit.
He has been nominated as Co-Director of PRMIA, (Professional Risk Managers International Association), U.S.A, Kolkata Chapter to spread awareness about risk management amongst students, academicians and corporate.
He has extensively travelled across the globe and is extremely passionate about nurturing the best out of students
Experience in the education industry and what makes it the best industry to work in
I came to education Industry after spending 25 years in Corporate Banking. I always had the desire to shift to education sector at some point of time which I did. I started liking teaching and counseling students when I joined ICFAI. Banking industry taught me how to patiently handle different types of people and understand their problems through HR and IR issues apart from understanding finance and Banking. Despite having engineering degree from IIT, Kharagpur, I completed by Cost Accountancy while in the Bank and subsequently completed PhD from my alma mater while in ICFAI. My experience with education has been a really satisfying one as getting students placed in companies is always better than achieving any corporate target. It is the best industry to work in as one can seriously improve the quality of one’s life provided one is passionate about teaching.
Prof. (Dr). Ajay Pathak’s philosophy of leadership and his leadership style
My leadership style is simple and straight forward . Give a long rope to every person until your trust is belied. Give time to persons to amend themselves. If no change happens, pull the rope. All my faculty members and staff complement each other including me.
Biggest challenge faced as the Vice Chancellor of ICFAI, Tripura
ICFAI being in private sector has always faced challenges from Govt Colleges and Universities. But we have managed to handle this very well as we are now recognized as a name to reckon within education sector. With eleven universities (Five in North East) and 9 business schools and more than one lac Alumni members, we continue to march forward with excellent placements.
Student-industry interaction at ICFAI, Tripura
ICFAI is strongly networked with industries as more than 1,000 companies visit our campuses all across the country. ICFAI, Tripura is also on the same platform. Industry interface is a continuous process and ICFAI, Tripura continues to do well with several MDPs, Guest lectures and Campus connect programs of several industries.
Prof. (Dr). Ajay Pathak on time management
ICFAI is a strong system based organization. Our processes are clearly laid down. The schedules are always clearly mentioned before the commencement of each semester for all the stakeholders in the group. All the events are held as per stated time of the year. Hence as VC, time management though intense, can be managed smoothly.
Prof. (Dr). Ajay Pathak’s relationship with the students
I make myself available not only to the students but also to all the faculty members and my staff members all the time. I do not believe in bureaucracy and arrogance. ICFAI allows you to grow with the group through simplicity and transparency.
Prof. (Dr). Ajay Pathak on growth of B-schools in India
Several B-Schools are closing time. Those who cannot deliver will fade out and the best B-Schools will survive the test of time. According to me, ICFAI Business School will be in the forefront in quality academic delivery and excellent placements in the years to come, as in the past.
Qualities which over the year helped Prof. (Dr). Ajay Pathak create a brand name for ICFAI
We believed in quality in academic delivery since more than two decades. We give the best to the students. Best in course content, Best in faculty quality. Best in industry interface. We allow the students to develop their own thought processes and believe in themselves through various sports, games and creativity.
ICFAI has come a long way through more than two decades of education by continuously pursuing activities for benefit of students, faculty members and all the stakeholders of the society.
Goals do you have in your mind for your institute for the next few years
Our goal is to continue to sustain with our model of delivery. We would continue to do well in the years to come and never falter on the trust placed on us by our existing and future students.
Suggestions for the current youth and the aspiring students
Just be yourself. Work on your skills and develop your core competency. Every student is different from others, so just emulate your persona. Whatever you are, think that you are the best. Have simple and achievable goals. Never Chase money. World will be at your feet if you have something within. Develop that something!