Interview by Bhawna Rawat
Dr. Prakash Bethapudi is currently working as the HOD,IT at Vignan’s Institute of Engineering for Women, Vishakapatnam. He holds MCA, M.Tech and Ph.D. Previously, he worked for GITAM University, MIC College of Technology, Lakireddy Balireddy College of Engineering and Sanketika Vidya Parishad Engineering College. He has been a prominent member of various professional bodies, Editorial board member and reviewer for many reputed journals. Many of his research papers have been published in national and international journals.
The holy profession of teaching and the importance of a Guru in everyone’s lives
I started my teaching profession with passion after my M.Tech in Computer Science and Technology from Andhra University, Visakhapatnam in the year 2005. I am very happy and satisfied with this holy profession in making the future Engineers with values for the past 14 years. Education is a divine and service oriented profession. Parents give us life and everything we need. But from childhood, it is the teachers who lay a path, study us, identify our talents, educate us with values and make us real professionals.
A teacher is our first GURU who shares knowledge and treats everyone equally without expecting anything in return. A teacher gets satisfaction and feels proud when his student gets recognition in his profession and is helpful in building the nation. A President, a Prime minister, an IAS, an IPS, a Scientist, an Engineer, a Doctor, an Actor, a Lawyer, a Judge, an author, a Constitution Builder whoever it may be, everyone are once a student for some teacher. If there is no teacher in our life, we cannot imagine what we are and what our life is. Hence the passion to shape a student with knowledge, discipline and values, which eventually helps in building the nation make the teaching profession the best.
My leadership philosophy is based on the belief of teamwork
Being the HOD of women’s Engineering college, it is my responsibility to see that every girl student compete equally with boys in all aspects. I see that they take participation in all activities, events and make smart decisions independently by working in teams with utmost care and dedication.
As an individual, one cannot achieve many things. Only teamwork includes multiple brains working together with innovation. Team spirit and team efforts help in completing any sort of critical tasks with ease. Leadership is not commanding someone or something. Leadership should provide an equal chance to all individuals and include everyone without partialities in every activities. Leadership should also make every individual work with comfort and passion. Hence, as a HOD of Vignan’s Institute of Engineering for Women, I always describe my philosophy and leadership style as teamwork.
Significant challenges faced by Dr. Bethapudi, being theHOD of Vignan’s Institute of Engineering for Women
Previously I served GITAM UNIVERSITY, Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh and Vignan’s Institute of Technology and Science, Telangana. I recently got transferred to Vignan’s Institute of Engineering for Women on request and was appointed as the HOD for IT Department.
There are no significant challenges yet faced as HOD in Vignan’s Institute of Engineering for Women. However, as HOD, I am ready to face any sort of challenges and will try to give my best for overall growth of department, institute and students in all aspects in the upcoming future.
The University’s curriculum which we follow is designed to meet the needs of the current industry
Vignan’s Institute of Engineering for Women is a non-autonomous Institution which is affiliated to Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University, Kakinada, Andhra Pradesh. All affiliated Institutions should follow the Curriculum designed, framed and updated by the respective university. As per the curriculum is concerned, it is very obvious that it was designed to meet the needs of the current industry
As the best practice, frequent updates were made and latest technologies were introduced in the curriculum that helps the students to learn and improve their technical skills, currently being used by the industries, and develop as entrepreneurs. Apart from the regular curriculum, we had collaboration with Andhra Pradesh State Skill Development Corporation (APSSDC) and many other industries who train the upcoming and recent technologies to our students according to the needs of industry. This helps every student to improve academically, grow strong technically and become entrepreneurs.
APSSDC is a unique organization formed as a public-private partnership (PPP) corporation to promote skill-development & entrepreneurship in the state of Andhra Pradesh. It is incorporated as a Section-8 company (not-for-profit) with a private equity component of 51% and 49% by the Government of Andhra Pradesh. The Corporation serves as the Executive Agency for the newly formed Department of Skill Development, Entrepreneurship and Innovation providing high-quality skilled manpower. Lot of workshops, seminars, FDPs are conducted by every department of our institution for students and faculty to improve themselves in all aspects. Institute also encourage our students and staff to attend workshops, seminars, FDP’s and face many competitions being organized by most of the reputed institutions to update their knowledge and skills which help their self-growth and compete with the current industry needs and develop as entrepreneurs.
The changes observed by Dr. Bethapudi
Starting my career as a teacher from 2005, I worked with reputed Technical Institutions. Before getting transferred on request to Vignan’s Institute of Engineering for Women recently, I worked as HOD in Department of CSE at Vignan’s Institute of Technology and Science at Hyderabad for one and a half years and GITAM University at Visakhapatnam for Ten years along with few other Institutions previously.
During my journey as a teacher, I met and taught thousands of students and played many roles and occupied many positions like HOD, Assistant Director of Admissions, Chief Examiner, Board of Studies member, Department Review Committee (DRC) member, Exam Coordinator, Academic Monitoring Committee (AMC) Chair Person, Student Counsellor, Grievance Redressal committee member, Anti Ragging Committee member, Internal Complaint Committee member, Spot Valuation, Paper Setting, Reviewer, Editorial Board member, guiding M.Tech and B.Tech Projects and many more department and Institute level roles and responsibilities.
Various changes were noticed in the education industry in the past few years. Corporate people are looking for students with good academics, research, technical skills, logical skills, communication skills, multitasking capabilities, attitude and overall discipline. To meet the requirements of the corporate industry, Vignan’s Institution of Engineering for Women is playing a key role in improving every student academically, technically, logically and in all aspects by providing Campus Recruitment Training (CRT) and other trainings to all students to bridge the gap between industry and institution.
Few of the reputed software companies are providing training to our students on their current domains, providing Internships and absorbing them into their firms, which help them to start their works from day one after joining their companies. Along with those training, the Curriculum is playing important role with the latest technologies like Android Application development, Python Programming, R Programming, Internet of Things, Big Data Analytics and many more along with their core subjects by providing knowledge and technical skills as required by the current needs of the industries.
How an ideal school environment should look like
An ideal school environment will be the one where the students develop learning capabilities, Technical skills, knowledge, discipline, punctuality, physical fitness and everything needed to build his/her career. Nowadays, corporate schools and colleges have come into existence everywhere. Students have stopped thinking independently and reading textbooks as they are provided with materials and notes.
Previously educational institutions were established as service-oriented organizations but now everything has become commercial. Students are not physically fit. There are no playgrounds. Every management is more concerned about ranks, marks and profits. Value education is vanishing day by day in schools and colleges. Students are forgetting to respect their teachers and elders. Hardworking and competing nature is not seen in most of the students. Even a student getting above 90% is unable to write a leave letter properly.
Students are going to schools and colleges before sunrise and returning homes back after sunset. Most of the students are not even seeing the sun in their day to day life and obviously having Vitamin D deficiency. Even though few schools are having playgrounds, increase in the use of electronic gadgets are stopping the students from playing as most of the students are addicted to social media such as YouTube, WhatsApp, Twitter, Facebook etc.
Most of the companies and industries are expecting good attitude, academics, multi-talents, multi-domain expertise and proper physical fitness from their employees. Also, Research, Innovative and Interdepartmental works have improved drastically. Even core branches are towards computers and going for automation. In order to satisfy today’s needs, every educational Institute should encourage and see that their curriculum is updated regularly and provides all the above-mentioned facilities and see that they satisfy today’s industry needs.
The top qualities that an aspiring student must possess
Nowadays almost all parents want their children to become an Engineer. Lakhs of students are inclined towards engineering education. As per my views are concerned, a student aspiring engineering education should have passion towards the branch he is going to join. Before joining the engineering course he should know and have some knowledge about the course, branch and the opportunities that are available after completing the course.
A student should also set a goal for his career and plan accordingly to achieve it. The quality to be possessed by every student is that he should be regular and punctual to classes. He should work hard and inculcate a habit to learn and grow in the field chosen and should be an ever learner. He should always read test books and move towards the direction of innovation and research. He should question himself about what to do, how to do, why to do, when to do, where to do, etc., which creates interest and improve passion towards the innovation, research and learning.
Students should improve knowledge, technical skills, communication skills with good attitude and values, compete with outside world and plan towards the direction of becoming an entrepreneur as the world needs lot of entrepreneurs who should be the providers of employability and not the job seekers.
Goals for the Institute for the next few years
In the next few I wish to work in the direction to achieve few accreditations and autonomous status to my institute. I am happy to inform that for the past few years our students are the toppers in the University results and I shall see that it continues for the coming years too. I am insisting my students who are children of businessmen to develop applications for their own business. As I did and made it possible as the HOD of CSE at B.Tech level in my previous institute, I am also planning and encouraging my current students to go for extension works of journal publications as their major projects and also see that their work is published in reputed journals.
Our institute is encouraging the students to carry out with NPTEL, Microsoft EDX, COURSERA and many more certifications courses. Courses like CISCO Networking, IOT, Machine Learning, Big Data Analytics, python and latest technologies are being organized in the institution to improve their overall skills and seeing that our students are far better in all aspects than other engineering students. I also motivate our students to participate in various technical, non-technical events, sports, competitions and help in their overall growth. I also try to see that my students become entrepreneurs in the coming years.
Suggestions for all the students
I sincerely suggest the current youth and the aspiring students to be serious, innovative, hardworking and become job providers (entrepreneurs) and not job seekers.