There may not be any resemblance in profession to link Anil Kumble and Anand Nagarajan. The former is a famous cricketer who made miracles with the ball in the history of world cricket and latter is the founder of Dextler, a learning solution providing company that leverages technology to enable companies and institutions to manage and enhance their knowledge pool. However, the origins of both of these achievers are the same – Rashtreeya Vidyalaya College of Engineering, Bangalore and incidentally, both of them were taught by Prof.K.N.Raja Rao, an engineering professor from the same college. "It is true that sports and extracurricular activities will enable students to work as a team and communicate. I have taught at least half of the alumni members of RV College and I have seen that average students have become entrepreneurs and good leaders. Consequently I believe that overall development is equally important for a student as is academics," says Raja Rao, Advisor, RV College of Engineering.
Prof. Rao, believes that a career in teaching is fitting for lifelong learning and the ardor towards wisdom, turned him to an educationalist, even though he had two offers from the corporate before he graduated from the campus after his post graduation. In the year of 1981, he began his career as assistant professor in Electronics and Communications Department at RV College of Engineering after acquiring his PG Diploma in Telecommunication Engineering from the University of Roorkee. The passionate assistant professor became head of the Electronics and Communication department in the next six years.
With rise in number of students and available courses, the department of Electronics and Communication split into three different branches and his passion towards communication subjects made him the head of Tele Communication Department. In 2004, under his leadership, the college posted their maiden step in postgraduate programs by providing M-tech in Digital Communication and is currently providing more than 15 master programs in various streams with a total intake of 120 students.
As the paradigm of pedagogy has shifted to a newer culture with emergence of Internet as the focal point for most of the information gathered, Prof. Rao believes that managing students with a bad learning attitude is one of the biggest challenges of any tutor. To cope up with the changes and to attract the students in the classroom, he adopted modern technologies that disrupted his conventional ways of teaching in the early 80's. "I never used videos in the class earlier and today I am using short films in the classroom to get the students interested in the lessons. We have to change the teaching paradigm from chalk and duster to newer devices in order to cope with the changes of today," says Prof. Rao.
The telecommunications professor loves teaching the subjects 'Mobile networks' and 'Satellite Communication' and authored a book titled "Fundamentals of Satellite Communication" in the year of 2004. Prof. Rao always encourages his students to go beyond the curriculum and use the knowledge that they gained for innovations and in building new products. With a strong support of this professor, the college now has different teams that develop formula-1 racecars and equipments for satellites. "In the context of current Indian education and technology industries, the most important aspect to bear in mind is re-engineering. Today everybody is looking for outcome-based education and students have to find the distinction between what they have learned in the academic years rather than what they have been taught in the program," added Prof. Rao.
Apart from academics, he played major role in setting up MoU with various companies, set up Altera Achieva Laboratory, headed in setting up of Campus fiber network, implemented Asset Management software for the institution, coordinated the drafting of master plan for the institution and worked as the warden for six years. During this period, the management crowned him as the "Best teacher – 2008" and hand over the additional responsibility as the Vice Principal of the RV College.
The management of RV College was not ready to let him bid adieu to his profession when he was superannuated from the college as Principal and requested him to continue as the Advisor. The ever-thirsty learner was happy to continue his service for the institution and accepted the offer. With an impressive experience of more than 34 years in teaching, the patron who believes in productive studies is still helping his students to amplify from an ordinary level to an extraordinary base.
Prof. Raja Rao, telecommunication professor who has decorated positions like HOD, Vice Principal and Principal in his long 34-year teaching profession at Rashtreeya Vidyalaya College of Engineering, Bangalore. Presently, continuing at the top as an Advisor for the same college, he is proud to say that, he succeeded in transforming his ordinary students to extra ordinary individuals.