The world is feeling the impact of the Fourth Industrial Revolution all around. Last year, leading Business commentator, Forbes magazine presented a list of skills that future professionals will need to make their mark. Technology skills, creativity, and being global professionals ranked pretty highly on that list. Dr. Prabhat Pankaj, Director, Jaipuria, Jaipur quotes The Future of Work Report by World Economic Forum (WEF) and report on Global Employment Trends for Youth 2020 by International Labor Organization (ILO) to underline the importance of new age skills for global professionals. In that moment you realize that the extremely aware and highly experienced academic being at the helm is the secret to his B School being ahead of the curve. But we probe further into the new age specializations, industry oriented courses, emphasis on technology and how they have had a transformative influence at Jaipuria, Jaipur.
Keeping himself abreast with the reports from the voices of authority in International business, Dr. Pankaj has certainly kept an eye on the ball. He firmly believes that learning needs to transcend beyond classroom and dive into real-life experiences. It’s a strategy Jaipuria, Jaipur adopted quickly through experiential learning, learning-by-doing, and learning beyond classroom quite early. He tells us that it has led to two major shifts in PGDM program. “Firstly, there has been a focus on learning coupled with major re-shuffling of pedagogy. Secondly it has resulted in blending of technology and new-age electives and certificate courses. We have also seen a huge change in student assessment and emphasis on collaborative learning. Can we make our students learn how to learn together in group and how to do peer assessment? These are some of the questions we have tried to address,” he informs.
According to Dr. Pankaj, elective courses are a fantastic opportunity for B-schools to keep up with the fast and dynamic changes in the industry. With dual specialization option, Jaipuria Institute of Management has been enabling students to carve out their own niche. New age open electives related to machine learning, analytics, and international economics give them the competitive edge. The Director tells us that from next year his B School will add tourism, health management, and family business management to the list of electives. “These are fast growing areas not only in terms of their contributions to GDP but also from the point of view of starting a new business. Creative economy is expanding and there will be a lot of focus on B-schools to assimilate new age services as part of electives. As usual Jaipuria Institute of Management will stand ahead of the curve,” he declares strongly.
Many industry experts and academic gurus have spoken of the importance of lateral thinking for future professionals. Integration of Liberal Arts courses into management learning is its secret sauce. Dr. Pankaj reveals that Jaipuria, Jaipur offers Liberal Arts courses in Happiness & Wellbeing, Economic History of India, Alternative Cultural Shifts, Culture and Society, Management Thought Leaders and Perspective, and French Language. He asserts that though traditional specializations are still popular with students, you see a steady shift towards these courses and new age electives like machine learning and analytics. “The offering on Happiness and Wellbeing is unique to Jaipuria, Jaipur as it is delivered based on our own research and expertise. Perhaps, we are one of the pioneers in launching this futuristic course. Students are also looking at AI and Blockchain but more in the form of workshops,” he explains.
And Jaipuria, Jaipur has consistently molded its learning experiences to cater to students’ interests and requirements. Dr. Pankaj tells us that by taking students’ demands into account, the B School is offering them Industry-run-certificate courses by BSE, KPMG, Thomas Assessment, IBM Analytics, TrakInvest, and British Standard Institute (BSI). These courses are as popular as the electives, and go a long way in boosting students’ employability credentials. The placement results speak for themselves. “Given the popularity of these courses we will introduce AI and machine learning courses in time. The new age electives and industry-run-certifications have given us wonderful placements. For the past two years, our students have cracked core finance profiles in companies like Moody’s analytics, Protiviti, S&P Global. We see these results in HR, Marketing, Supply Chain Management; across the board really,” he says proudly.
Dr. Pankaj and his B School have a lot to be proud of as it has stayed quick on the button, transforming with the fast evolving demands of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, and showing the way for others management institutes in the country.