Interview by Sakshi Aggarwal
Ms. Sengupta is a marketing professional with over 18 years of experience in the industry. Her expertise lies in product development, brand and media management, marketing, administration and developing and implementing strategies in India and overseas.
Ms. Malobika Sengupta’s experience in the education industry
I have about 23-24 years of experience in this industry. It is one of the most enriching industry to work in. It has an extremely satisfying environment to work where you get pay, opportunity to train young and budding professionals and see them get into the profession and make a livelihood to themselves and also be successful in whichever area he/she chose to be in. So, that is the greatness of this industry. Where many other people get living and are successful in their life because of this profession, I have consciously chosen this industry to work in because I want to be associated with the education. When I was young, WLCI gave me a great opportunity to work in this industry and be a catalyst in making people’s life.
Ms. Malobika’s philosophy of leadership and her leadership style
Being one of the team members and help them in goal set they want to achieve, while taking people along with me, has been my philosophy of leadership. This has helped me nurture people. I give them a lot of space and allow them to be themselves.
Challenges faced as the CEO of WLCI School of Fashion
It was 23 years back when we started off the WLCI School of Fashion. It was not one of the top targeted careers at that point in time. So, it was a challenge to make parents and students understand that this profession has a very bright future as they only saw its darker side. It was a challenge to make them understand that this profession is unlike any other profession. It may not be typical tradition then. But today, it is seen as a happening profession-from many people not choosing it to a lot of demand right now.
Ms. Malobika on importance of time management in life
Time management is very critical not only for a senior professional but for all blocks of life. How you manage your time so as to give right importance to the right thing at the right time. Your work needs time, your students have to keep it at a time, your faculty and your team need time and so does your family. So, it is very important to plan out your time. I would say time management becomes important and planning your time is part of the management you do.
Curriculum in WLCI School of Fashion
Our curriculum has been one of the best in this pace and we have a very good mix of what is required in this country and what is required internationally. Therefore, the students are prepared to be working anywhere in the world. Indian fashion infusion with the International fashion has been a trend over the last few years and that was the curriculum, train young budding designers to become one of them. So, the curriculum is always sought after whatever is the requirement of the industry.
Growth of students through placement opportunities available at WLCI School of Fashion
For fashion placements, the students have been always thought after. Requirement from the industry comes automatically. The purpose of training them with the right curriculum and with the right skills required in them for the industry placements follow. So, there are organizations and design companies which come to us on their own because they know the level of training the college gives and they are sure that the students are industry ready.
Relationship with the students being the CEO of the university
I have always been available to the students formally, where you go and address students and understand their progress and be part of them. To be unavailable informally like any kind of counselling, any kind of other requirements, any kind of inputs in terms of getting a job, preparing a CV, for making a good presentation and I have always been in touch with them as a part of jury and as a part of their review session which has helped me connect with them which is my regular feature. I always am a part of the review session along with my faculty members.
Ideal school environment according to Ms. Malobika
The ideal environment for the kind of courses that we provide and the professionals we would like to train, it is not typically academic. It has to have a professional environment which becomes the part of the training to be able to go and work in the Industry. In terms of timelines, in terms of making presentations, in terms of everything being professional rather than academics.
Goals in your mind for WLCI School of Fashion for the next few years
First goal is the foundation of the curriculum which keeps them at the pace of what the requirement of the industry is. As a human being, a student should have professional qualities apart from the typical professional training. The purpose is also to make them good human beings adding life skills, soft skills and other types of skills.
Suggestion for the current youth and the aspiring students
Being good human beings, having the right values, ethics, morals is something which they should keep intact in this world. It is something we should not lose our sight on.