Interview by Sakshi Aggarwal
Dr. Sandeep S. Inamdar is Vice President of Vishwaniketan Institute of Management Entrepreneurship & Engineering Technology. He has done Bachelor in Electrical Engineering and Post Graduate in control systems. He has completed his Doctoral program from National Institute of Industrial Engineering (NITIE) in Electrical Distribution System Efficiency Improvement. He was a Senate Member of the University of Pune, member of the board of management, the board of Research of Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, New Delhi. He is an expert member of Department of Science and Technology Committee of Government of India for the scheme of ‘Rajat Jayanti Vigyan Sancharak Fellowship’.
As an academician, he has contributed to the development of academic institutions, faculty and student community by employing innovative teaching-learning practices with strong industry interface. His ‘Activity Plan’ and ‘Value Addition Programs’ have been very popular in students use to develop technical and life skills in them. He is currently Managing Trustee and Secretary of Vishwaniketan, an institute created by him and his friends from industry and education for giving world-class learning experience to Indian Students.
He has participated in two European Commission Projects so far and has been contributing as Steering Committee Member of Erasmus Mundus program of European Commission titled “Mobility for Life”. More than 42 fellowships have been offered by this program to Indian scholars at the level of Masters, Ph. D., Post Ph. D.
He is a trustee of the first Indian Standardization Body titled ‘Global ICT Standardization Forum for India “GISFI” and Director, CTIF, India. He has organized more than 15 International Workshops and conferences. He has worked on a number of Industry collaborations successfully like IBM center of excellence, Zensar Campus Extend Program, Reliance manpower development program etc. His internal revenue generation has reached to more than INR 3 crores.
He is deeply interested in problem and project-based learning activities involving user industry and evolved more than 20 value addition programs for engineering students so far. In the personal capacity, he is developing a self-sufficient home for 50 children who have lost their parents on a self-owned 10 acres land near Navi Mumbai.
Dr. S. S. Inamdar’s experience in the education sector
The experience from student’s side is amazing and the young generation is far better than our generation. So, the first motivation is to be with them and work with them. That is the first step of any teaching process. For 29 years, I have worked with a lot of children and they have been doing amazing in their lives and I am connected to them. This is the way I work. If you speak about the education system in India, I am not happy with it. India has not invested in teachers and commercialization of education is another big question. India did not invest much in education.
Dr. S. S. Inamdar’s philosophy of leadership and his leadership style
Vishwaniketan is an outcome of European Education Project, where Indian teachers did Ph.D. in 14 Universities in Europe. When these teachers saw the concept of Project Based Learning in developed countries they were really very inspired and when compared with Question-Answer Marks Education system of India, it was far better.
We also realized that because of the Project based learning technique, the culture of Product Development and Technology Development started there and that is how they occupied majority share of the market. If you look at the Indian market, you’ll also find all the technology we use is developed by other countries.
So, we realized that Project-based Learning is the missing component in Indian Education system that is why we created Vishwaniketan. Vishwaniketan is created by teachers like me and it is all about Project Based Learning.
Significant challenges faced as the Vice President of Vishwaniketan’s Institute of Management Entrepreneurship and Engineering Technology
The basic challenge is to train teachers and training them on Project Based Learning and we have done this successfully so far. The second most important thing is, the students in India have a very less focus on their own career. If you talk to a student of class 11th or 12th, they cannot answer a basic question, where do you see yourself after 10 years. This the challenge but yes, we have successfully made things happen to be very honest. Our 2 batches have passed out and they have 5-7 companies today.
Dr. S. S. Inamdar on growth of education industry in India if Project-Based Learning is brought into mainstream education
That will really be a great thing, and we are working for that only. Around 20 Universities and Institutes in India are working on Project Based Learning with us and we find a very good approach of people especially students towards Project Based Learning. If Project Based Learning is implemented as a system in India, I think a lot of wonders can happen in this country. Keeping it in simple words, we should take our own market in our hands. China has their own Google, why not we? This should actually happen because we are a 1.2 billion people country.
Growth of students through placement opportunities available at Vishwaniketan’s Institute of Management Entrepreneurship and Engineering Technology
It has been excellent, I have seen students who have done project work nicely are placed in their first round of Interview. Industry wants engineers like them.
Dr. S. S. Inamdar’s relationship with the students
I work with the students daily for 10 hours. You can give me whatever title you want to, but for me working with students is the meaning of that title.
Loopholes that Dr. S.S. Inamdar finds in the curriculum of Indian Education System
In foreign Universities, they do not spend much time on examinations. But here in India, we spend three complete months in examinations and if we make students work on projects in those three months, and if you evaluate them on their projects, miraculous things can happen.
We are far behind. Classroom teaching, the requirement of attendance, this is not the way we should have been. Here, we also have to implement this thing slowly in India because while implementing this, there will be tremendous freedom to teachers. And this freedom must not be misused. There is another thing that everyone says, but no one does it. For 10 years, we have the same curriculum but in Foreign Universities, they have no curriculum. The professor knows what is new in the market and they will train students according to it.
Goals in mind for Vishwaniketan Institute of Management Entrepreneurship and Engineering Technology for the next few years
In next 2 years, we will have 25 startup companies!
The top qualities, according to Dr. S. S. Inamdar, that an engineering aspirant must possess
Number one is focus, second is technical skills, then life skills, innovation and creativity, and self-learning.
Suggestions for the current youth and the aspiring students
They have brains and the world has changed for them and they have huge opportunities. They should not get stuck into Question-Answer Marks Scheme and even if the system imposes, they should, of course, get marks but work on projects. This is the future!