Interview by Bhawna Rawat
Dr. Kiran Dennis Gardner is currently working as the Dean of Galgotias University, Greater Noida. She holds L.L.M., L.L.B, B. Ed., M. Ed. and Ph. D degrees. She has a massive experience in teaching profession of 3 decades including 12 years in Higher Education and 20 years in Secondary School. She is a passionate teacher who enjoys innovation in teaching-learning process. The emphasis is more on experiential learning. Her responsibilities include running the Law programmes, doing the routine work of preparing academic calendar and activities calendar, conducting the examination, organizing FDP and conducting many activities for the benefit of the students.
Dr. Gardner has organized several National and International Seminars, Conferences and Moot Court Competitions. She has presented papers in national/international seminars/conferences. She has edited books & conference/seminars proceedings and her articles and papers have been published too. Reading, cooking, travelling, painting, flower arrangements, meditation, music and doll making are some of the activities that act as a stress buster for her.
Experience and knowledge gained through the teaching profession
I always wanted to be a teacher and I am very passionate about the teaching profession. Through the teaching-learning process, a teacher herself progresses each day, while educating her students. This is the best way of serving the nation by preparing efficient, talented, skilled and law abiding citizens for the country.
A leadership which empowers the team to have a common vision and mission
It takes a team to transform the students and bring about effective results. I believe in empowering my team and nurturing leaders around me. When everyone is on board with a clear vision and mission, goals soon becomes reality.
Facing the challenges smoothly with the cooperation of the management
So far the sailing has been smooth. I did not have to face any challenges. The management is very cooperative and they have not said no to any activity that we wanted to conduct. Funds were made available. Whatever we needed for the School of Law has been provided. We have committed faculty members from reputed Law Schools who are giving their best to the students.
Conducting various activities to make the students practice their practical knowledge
To be successful in their legal profession the students should have in-depth knowledge of the Law, both of substantive and procedural laws. They should demonstrate proficiency in critical analysis and legal reasoning. They also need to be an efficient counsellor and negotiator.
Students need to be well-versed in research skills and it is must for them to have mastery in written and oral communication
To equip them we focus on various aspects:
Lectures are conducted through Flip classes, through interactive sessions, classroom level debates and group discussions. Moreover, projects which are given to the students in each semester are designed in such a manner which involves; field survey report compilation; company compliances; model infrastructure development projects, a model framework for company initiation, framing model contractual documents, regular jail visit etc. Deep enriched cultures of Model United Nations, Mock Parliaments, Judgment Writing and Client Counseling have been established as a regular basis student involvement assignment.
These programmes along with their regular classes develop a sense of practical knowledge and bridge the theoretical interface with the realistic periphery
In addition to providing a hands-on approach with the students, organizing workshop and awareness events on various themes such as environmental awareness, awareness on information and technology, Rights of Senior Citizens, Rights of women and Children, Prevention of Sexual Harassment, etc.
- MOOT/ Mock Trial Culture:
In every semester, for at least two subjects, students have a moot/Mock trial as a component for continuous evaluation. This enhances their Research, Communication and reasoning skills. Students participate in intramural Moot Court Competition and the panel selected represents the School of Law at various competitions. Last Year the 34th Inter-University Bar Council of India National Moot Court Competition was organized by Galgotias University.
School of Law, Galgotias University, provides eight(8) internships of one month each during the five years duration of integrated Course and three (3) internship of one month each for three years LLB Programme. This is the time when the students are able to experience how the Law works in the society. Students are allowed to carry on internships in various reputed NGO’s, District Courts, High Courts and Supreme Courts, Law Firms, Corporate Firms, IPR based firms, under the guidance of eminent Judges
- Research Centers:
The law school presently runs nine academic centers viz. Centre for studies for International Law, Centre for Legal Research and Pedagogy (CLRP), Centre for Constitutional Law and Governance with Justice, Centre for Criminal Justice Studies, Centre for Corporate and Business Affairs, Centre for IPR studies, Centre for human rights studies, Centre for Environmental Studies, Centre for Post Graduate Legal Studies and Centre for Global Law Initiatives and Studies in International Law; and six committees viz. Debate/Student Seminar Committee, Moot Court Committee, International Conference Committee, Model United Nations Committee, Legal Aid Committee and Cultural Committee.
It is a matter of fact, that each of these committees and centers are fully active and arrange an array of programmes in each semester which is previously designed with specialized minds.
- International Conference, Seminars, Colloquium, and Workshops are organized regularly to provide impetus to research and presentation skills .
- Expert Lectures:
Expert lectures of eminent legal professionals are organized regularly for the benefit of the students.
The biggest change in the education industry and the requirements of Corporates from students
The biggest change that I notice in the Education Industry is the mushroom growth of Private Universities. These Universities are providing educational opportunities to a large number of students who otherwise would have been deprived of Higher Education.
Corporate houses, nowadays, want students to be prepared for the industry even before they graduate. They expect that the candidate should have the required skills for the profession. Just the degree is not enough.
Regular interaction with the students helps in building a strong bond with them
I have an open door policy. Students can come to meet me at any time. They write emails, to which I regularly respond. I interact with them when I am on rounds. We arrange lots of activities also, where they get to interact with me and other faculty members. I also take classes, where students get to talk to me directly.
Making students excellent legal professionals is the solo goal
I want my students to do well in life. So, the only goal is to equip them appropriately to become excellent legal professionals.
Advice for the present students
At the end of the programme, every student aspires for a job with a good package. What a student needs to remember is that no employer is going to pay him 1 lakh unless the employer earns 5 lakhs from him. While studying, a student has to think why will someone employ him? Has he acquired the required skills that the industry needs?
The youth, today, is very smart and techno-savvy. They just need to work hard and be focused