Digital isn’t an option any more: Ketan Marwadi, founder, Marwadi University

By: |
December 7, 2020 3:45 AM

Universities must provide digital services in every area

“In the post-pandemic world, education might not be restricted in certain groups and time-space,” he says. “Education shouldn’t simply respond to future changes, but should drive future changes.”“In the post-pandemic world, education might not be restricted in certain groups and time-space,” he says. “Education shouldn’t simply respond to future changes, but should drive future changes.”

While the pandemic has caused serious disruptions in the education sector, it’s also time for policymakers to rethink the role of education institutes as well as the needs of oft-neglected learners, such as adult learners, says Ketan Marwadi, the founder & chairman of Rajkot, Gujarat-based Marwadi University.

“In the post-pandemic world, education might not be restricted in certain groups and time-space,” he says. “Education shouldn’t simply respond to future changes, but should drive future changes.”

Gujarat has appointed two taskforces for NEP implementation: One will focus on policy reforms at the school level, and the other (of which Marwadi is a member) on implementation at higher education level.

Infrastructure (library, labs) and faculty have been key requirements for institutes to nurture industry-ready graduates. But, Marwadi adds, this is changing. “Education institutes must provide digital services in every area, and use the data generated for better decision-making.”

Recently, the government of Gujarat awarded Marwadi University with the indigenous supercomputer Param Shavak. This, he says, will enable researchers and faculty who wish to excel in computer science and engineering. “With 20% of our students undertaking projects in AI, ML, DL utilising supercomputing facilities, we will have 90 students directly involved with the supercomputer,” he adds.

Marwadi University is one of the few that has made upskilling mandatory for its faculty. “Teaching is a dynamic field, and this means professional development has to be an ongoing process,” Marwadi says.

He adds the industry-academia partnership is set to scale newer heights. “The future of work lies in AI, automation and gig workforce—all of which will shrink the shelf life of skills. It is inevitable for industry to rely on academia to train the talent required to thrive in the future workplace,” Marwadi says. “We are also working in the direction of ‘atmanirbharta’ by offering technical and financial support to students, and more than 31 innovative ideas are being scaled up as start-ups. Currently, all start-ups are in prototyping development and testing mode, and soon they will be in a revenue-generating mode to become job creators and contribute towards Atmanirbhar Bharat.”

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