Journalism is no longer a field based on the concept of being a watchdog. It is now a field to help the public make sense of information which, bring up questions to change the society. Higher education in journalism can now be a tool to give students a chance to build important skills like researching, writing, interviewing and critical thinking. "With a vision to train students in journalism and to create more awareness our society was lacking, Harkisan Mehta Institute of Media, Research and Analysis, was established in 1990. Today, we stand proud on being one of the oldest media schools in the country", says Joyanto Mukherjee, Director, SVKM's Harkisan Mehta Institute of Media, Research and Analysis. He is quick to add that the institute is proud of the training it provides in the field of Advertising, PR and film making which is state of the art and absolutely hands on.
The institution is helping shape the future of journalism, advertising, PR and film making. With a structure in practical training, the institution now provides 26 certified courses, taught only by visiting faculty. Their faulty members include industry experts from practicing PR's, to practicing journalists and advertisers. All the courses at the institution is developed and altered by the visiting faculty members, according to the requirement of the current media market. The institute today, is a fortress to 228 students, with over 26 courses on offer. Each course is structured specifically to expose students to different departments of media. Students are guided to interact directly with people from the industries, to be trained likewise. The college focuses on a simple 'no stress mantra'. No exams are held on any course of study. Students are however, made to do projects and assignments. This move makes it more practical and training based. Students get to handle real life clients for 6 months. This ensures that, students are ready to develop and execute comprehensive advertising and PR plans. It also brings a complete different and real time training feel to the course. And, at the end of the tenure, students are evaluated according to their performances. Today, the institution has over 300 visiting faculty coming in from all over the country, changing the syllabus to train and teach students more efficiently. "We cover almost all the dimensions of media. Covering journalism, advertising, integrated marketing communication and new media, we bring in people from all over industry. We now have, experts coming from DNA, Mumbai Mirror, Times of India, Ogilvy, DDB Mudra, JWT and other leading media organizations," said Mukherjee.
Helping Students Create their own Future
With a placement record of 95 percent, the institution boasts of its alumni in some big names in the media world today. The college has so far successfully placed its students in Times of India, Mumbai Mirror, TV 9, and CNBC Network 18. The college has so far managed to achieve this by helping students sign MOUs with various organizations. Some names to have tied up with them are Tarmac affairs, +91 Brand Creation, Newzmonger, Headstart, Corcoise Films, Students of Cinema, Munjal, Khrishimart and Trinity. The demand for ad agencies, are at its peak. With this knowledge, the institute focuses on letting students invest in their own properties. They help students to build something of their own and support them with all the legal and paper work. This enables students to have a full time running enterprise by the time they leave the institution.
With 6 fully functioning companies operating from within the campus, the institution encourages and supports in-house entrepreneurs to come up with new business ventures. Thus, at the end of every 18 months course students have their own products ready to run. Simon Says, Penny for your Thoughts, Hashtag, Eva, Epsilon and One by Two are some names of the advertising agencies that run inside the campus. "That's how we train students to become leaders. It is our special way of leadership training," says Mukherjee.
The growth of media in the past few years has been tremendous. The need for skilled professionals is on the rise. Keeping this in mind the road map ahead of the college is to offer more media and journalism courses. With a vision to not only focus on training media but also to initiate development programs and white papers, the college is also looking to enter media research and convert part of the institute into a fully fledged media think tank. This is to help change the prospect of traditional journalism and media education and help mould students to become more efficient and accurate. In the last two decades, Harkisan Mehta Institute of Media, Research and Analysis has established itself as one of the important and top media institutes in the country. Today, the Institute provides all the necessary training which is needed to become successful media professionals.
He is a media graduate from the University of Westminster, London and is the youngest recipient of the REX Karmaveer Global Fellowship and Gold Karmaveer Chakra award. He has previously worked for the Times of India, Hindustan Times and the Daily Mail. Today is counted among the top 10 young and innovative academicians in Asia 2014 by ITE Germany.