In today\'s complex world where change is constant and technology frequently revolutionizes the way we work and live, it is up to universities to adapt first and subsequently prepare the generations of the future. Industry-ready professionals are in high demand, but short supply. Bangalore-based CMR University (CMRU) is attempting to bridge this gap.
A knowledge-partnership with IBM, one of the world\'s largest technology giants and a similar partnership with NASSCOM for employability-skills has enabled CMR University to create a different kind of educational eco-system. The university has signed a MoU with IBM to train its students in non-engineering disciplines such as Commerce, Management and Economics. \"Regardless of the domains, IT skills are a must-have in industry today. The involvement of IBM in our curriculum-design stage helps us to provide these skillsets to our students. It has greatly impacted our curriculum in a positive way,\" says Dr.Anand K Joshi, Vice Chancellor, CMR University.
The university lays emphasis on academic delivery, and continuously monitors its curriculum to ensure that it stays fresh, relevant and in line with current trends in industry. Every program offered by the university has adopted an experiential learning and project-based approach for up to 20 percent of its assessment. In addition, the university has partnered with industry bodies like NASSCOM to nurture thought leadership amongst its students and faculty. Speaking on the values of such a collaboration, Dr. Joshi explains, \"This partnership has improved our capability to develop and enhance our students skillsets. NASSCOM Sector Skill Council (NASSCOM-SSC) periodically conducts \'Train-the Trainer\' programs for those CMR University faculty who are involved in this project. This training prepares them with a holistic view of the collaborative initiative. Students undergo a Pre-Assessment Test (PAT) at the start of the programme and a Post Assessment Test after the course, following which NASSCOM issues a score card reporting each student\'s skills and competencies.\"
The university believes that academic, research and knowledge partnerships add tremendous value to its programs, ensuring that students study industry-relevant courses. A solid foundation that allows students to hone competencies often garnered by industry professionals can even position them well for further academic advancement through Masters and/or professional courses. The university has collaborated with Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), UK to offer a specialization in International Financial Accounting and also with Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA), UK to offer a specialization in Risk and Management Accounting at the Graduate level in Commerce.
Programs at the university are often structured to sync with the career plans that students have. One such example is the B.Com(Honors) program that the Foundation courses of The Institute of Chartered Accountants India and The Institute of Cost Accountants of India into its curriculum.
CMR University has extended services in the areas of Arts, Commerce, Science, Management, Education, Law, and Engineering with a focus on research and inter-disciplinary studies. With such a diverse profile, it\'s often easy to lose focus. However, considering the big picture of university education in India, Dr. Sabitha Ramamurthy, Chancellor, CMR University and her team are prepared to take on the challenge. Backed by 20 years of experience and leadership in building an educational empire, Dr. Sabitha Ramamurthy remains poised and confident as she leads her team ahead. After briefly reflecting on the early beginnings of CMR as a modest school set up in a small family orchard with only six students, she says \"The next big strategy that the world is looking for is an intergeneration of creativity in the education system and we have implemented the same successfully here.\"As the country is in dire need of skilled-professionals to cater the fast-changing needs of its various industries, universities like CMR that embrace change and break the norms of traditional education by moulding members of the next-generation workforce into innovators and independent thinkers, are the need of the hour.
Staying true to its vision \"to nurture creative thinkers who will drive positive global change\", the university has found a way to make its academic programs socially-relevant. CMRU has collaborated with the United Nations Global Compact Network India(GCNI) to includes modules on corporate social responsibility, sustainability, gender equality, women\'s empowerment, ethics, and disaster management in all of its courses.
CMR University has also recently established its School of Architecture. Drawing on the expertise of highly experienced faculty and leading practitioners in the field, the school will offer its unique B.Arch. programme from the academic year 2015-16 onwards.
The logo of the university depicts a \"swan taking flight\". It represents a beautiful swan reaching for the skies, one that is just about to take off from the waters. \"As a new age institution, that is what the CMR University strives to do,\" concludes Sri. K.C.Ramamurthy, IPS (Retd), Chairman, CMR University.
Dr. Sabitha Ramamurthy is the Chancellor of CMR University and President of the CMR Jnanadhara Trust. She is the visionary leader behind the CMR Group of Institutions. Over nearly 25 years, she has provided her able guidance and mentorship to the growth of CMR\'s various school and college initiatives. She has received numerous accolades for her extraordinary contributions to society. Today, as the Chancellor of CMR University, she continues to be at the forefront of delivering excellence in education.
Dr.Anand K Joshi
Dr. Joshi\'s work experience at Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU), National Council for Teachers Education (NCTE), All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), Ministry of Textiles, Govt. of India &Welingkar B-School has given him a deep understanding of the various forms of education at both National and International levels. His case study submitted to the ISB-IVEY Case Study Competition 2011 is widely acclaimed, has been published by Harvard Business Publishing as well as the Richard Ivey School of Publishing. He has also acted as a consulting advisor to AzimPremji Foundation, Bengaluru, Lavasa Corporation, Pune and Engineering Staff College of India, Hyderabad.