Our Emphasis Is On Experiential Learning

Updated: Sep 17 2003, 05:30am hrs
Since companies from sectors like insurance and services are now willing to recruit from management campuses,every B-school is now trying to attract these companies towards their institutes. And they are trying to do this by introducing new courses, specialisations that are specifically targeted at these sectors and by revamping the current curriculum. But for some of the new campuses like ICFAI Business School,the only way to attract these recruiters is by doing things that the established B-schools have not yet experimented.

And therefore we have launched a new form of summer assignments and on-the-job corporate projects, among others. The idea is to gain visibility amongst our prospective recruiters and also communicate our core strengths, says Prof. Y K Bhushan, senior advisor,ICFAI B-school. In an interview with The Financial Express, Mr. Bhushan shares some of the initiatives taken up by this campus so that they are able to create their own niche in the industry. Excerpts:

How are you trying to market the campus to the corporates
Management campuses can market themselves by bringing in some novelty within the current setup. So we have a summer internship project that lasts for four months,while other B-schools still have a concept of two month summer internship. Also, throughout the four months, the student who has undertaken the project, the faculty and the concerned corporate are constantly in touch with each other so that they can collectively examine ways of deriving significant value through these projects. This again is something which other B-schools have not been doing till date. As summer projects in many other campuses is still more student driven and does not see too much of a participation from the faculties.

How are you equipping the faculties to gain a global perspective
We are a member of the European Case Learning union that comprises of overseas academic institutions. The faculties from the foreign institutions provide some of the case studies from the foreign businesses which we acquire and disseminate amongst our students.

Similarly, our faculties also have to write distinctive cases relevant from the Indian businesses which is sent to all the academic institutions abroad.

We also conduct orientation workshops for our faculties so as to write a case that is contextual, winning and intuitive. This is surely one major effort that we have taken up for internationalisation of our academic education.

Companies often say that B-schools do not pay enough attention towards enhancing the practical understanding of the students. How are you trying to tackle this
Our main emphasis is on the experiential learning format of education. And this is illustrated by the fact that in addition to the four month summer assignment we have a four month of management research project. THis is a project that the student has to undertake with any of the companies. We also host internal contests where we judge the best summer projects,based on the presentations of their own projects given by the students.