Interview by Yash Panchal
Brigadier, Dr. VD Abraham, Sena Medal, Gallantry is Vice Chancellor at Shri Venkateshwara University, Gajraula, UP. He is a doctorate in Electronics and Communication from Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University (JNTU), Hyderabad, India, He has been the former VC of Oriental University, Indore, earlier to that, served as Brigadier, Electronics and Mechanical Engineers of Indian Army. As Army Leader of 15th Indian Scientific expedition to Antarctica, led the expedition for 16 months, chaired Antarctica selection committees, performed as Chief Maintainability Advisor to Indian Army, Dean Faculty of Educational (EME) institution, headed many Engineering organizations of Army and carried out gubernatorial appointment with Governor of J&K, National level sportsman and presently a graded Golfer. Known for pragmatic dynamism, remained as an asset to all organization. Decorated with three national awards and authored many papers, chaired /organized a large number of International/National seminars being an Executive member of IETE Centers of Meerut, Vadodara and Chennai, a blessed orator.
He is the President - Indian Sports and Cultural Society, Indore, got elected to Governing Council IETE for a term of 3 years and performed various responsibilities as Chairman, Innovation & Resource generation Committee, Member , Skill development training & placement committee, Member, Board of Research, Coordinator East Zone (India) including International Centers , Member, Finance & policy planning committee, Member Industrial coordination committee, Member, Membership & Centre Committee, Member, Media & Publicity Committee.
Dr. Abraham had many recognitions and awards like; Bharatmata Award awarded by Indian Institute of Oriental Heritage on 07 Mar 2014,in recognition of patronage to cause of research and development, Sena Medal (Gallantry) awarded by President of India on 15 Aug 1996, feat of courage of saving expedition member from ice-cold Antarctic Ocean, COAS Commendation Awarded on 15 Aug 1989 for the creative work in J&K, GOC-in-C’s Commendation awarded on 15 Aug 2006 for the invention of Night sights, Best Innovator-2004 Cash award for the design and fabrication of an Optical Instrument (Infantry Mortar Laying Instrument) which got inducted into the Army.
Smt. Sumitra Mahajan, Honorable Speaker of Lok Sabha commented Dr. Abraham’s work in the Slum Areas of Indore in promoting education through night classes and identifying and developing sports talents. Shri Narendra Modi, Honorable Prime Minister of India appreciated the effort of adopting ten villages of Sarigam, Near Vapi Gujarat for converting into a Smart Village, a concept developed and demonstrated by Dr. Abraham.
Dr. Abraham’s experience in the education industry
I have switched over to education industry as Vice-Chancellor from a very senior position in Indian Army. My imagination of this noble profession was very high. If you are sincere in your profession, one can draw a lot of satisfaction and earn happiness than financial perks. There was a saying prevailing in this industry that “Teaching profession is not by choice, it is by chance”. But I proved it wrong at whichever institution I worked in. My faculties felt oneness and a helping each other nature spread and the environment became filled with positive energy. Thus, each institution turned out to be a temple of education.
Dr. Abraham on the efforts to ensure that the non-academic support services are sufficiently well-resourced
- I believed and practiced a slogan, “Everyone any one Game”, so promotion of Sports and games makes the institution vibrant.
- Every faculty and non-teaching staff to plant a tree each and their name in placard is placed to nourish it.
- Various types of student clubs were established on self-finance mode.
- Adopt one village by each Department to optimize the resources of the village, organize night classes for illiterate elders, motive young ones to attend School regularly.
Expansion in terms of placement drive, international projects, and seminars
I have set goals to achieve and validate the progress, and degree of achievement is quantified with the help of Indicators, mentioned in my Article,’ University Excellence par-reachable’
Dr. Abraham on ensuring that the teaching staff have some form of teacher training
Faculties are the pillars of the university and they are sharpening their skill of delivery. ICT based teaching and updating of emerging technology are given utmost importance.
Dr. Abraham on whether the college make as much effort to stay in touch with their international alumni as they do with their home students
Annual Alumni function is a Gala time for all International students. They are given a feel that they are responsible to guide juniors.
Steps taken to maintain the positive environment and ‘Unity in Diversity’
- Every religious and regional festival are celebrated collectively.
- I being from Army background, which is renowned for “Unity in Diversity’ is practiced in total.
Measures taken by Shri Venkateshwara University to ensure the process of internships
- The internship is essential to know the job in the market, put students’ knowledge into practice and project themselves as a potential employee.
- So, last semester credit subjects are kept as minimum and four months are given for Internship.
Suggestions for the current youth
You are and you will become what you think, so think high and reach the unreachable target, the sky is the limit, “Bash on regardless”
Dr. Abraham’s philosophy of leadership
- Lead from the front and live by setting a good example.
- Live in midst of the battle of life, to withstand the whirl and to keep calm in the madness of action is the true character of a leader and a winner.
- Find the center of all your challenges, handle these with patience and calmness to find happiness and abundance in life.