Experts highlight scope, significance of course in academic institutions of J&K, Ladakh
Srinagar, Dec 20: Mahatma Gandhi National Council of Rural Education (MGNCRE) and the University of Kashmir jointly organised on Sunday an online workshop to raise awareness on the importance of introducing rural management courses and programmes in the J&K and Ladakh Union Territories.
The day-long workshop was organised in collaboration with the varsity’s School of Business Studies (SBS).
Chairman MGNCRE Dr Prasanna Kumar, Director Rural Management Prof Chethan Chittalkar, Dean School of Business Studies at KU Prof S Mufeed Ahmad, Prof Arti Guar from Chaudhary Devi Lal University, and Abilasha Bahugana from Leh were the chief resource persons at the workshop-cum-awareness programme.
In his speech, Prof Mufeed talked at length about the status of management education in the J&K UT in general and the University of Kashmir in particular.
“There is enormous scope for introducing MBA (Rural Management) in J&K to make students more employable. It can be introduced as a full-fledged course or as an area of specialisation in existing MBA programmes which can contribute towards raising awareness in rural places about the key management areas like marketing,” he said.
Prof Mufeed urged the MGNCRE to facilitate conducting case studies in rural management issues in the UTs of J&K and Ladakh.
In their presentations, Dr Prasanna and Prof Chetan discussed the significance of the rural management programmes in universities and colleges. Such programmes, they said, have to be designed to enable students to address the needs and requirements of people of the country living in the rural areas vis-à-vis rural management.
“MGNCRE is focusing on developing students as job-givers rather than job-seekers,” they said, assuring their full support vis-à-vis academics, study material, joint workshops etc. to the introduction of rural management programmes, alongside holding of faculty development and capacity-building programmes at the University of Kashmir, its affiliated campuses and colleges, and also at the NIT Srinagar.
Kumar Abhishek, J&K Coordinator of MGNCRE, gave a comprehensive presentation on the MBA (rural management) curriculum. He thanked KU Vice-Chancellor Prof Talat Ahmad, Director NIT Srinagar Prof Rakesh Sehgal, Prof Mufeed Ahmad, and faculty members of KU, Islamia College Srinagar and NIT Srinagar for extending their support to the workshop.
Digital marketing skill training for agri-startups commences at SKUAST-K
Srinagar, Dec 5: A weeklong advanced management development programme (AMDP) on ‘Digital Marketing Skills for Agri-Startups’ commenced on Monday at Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology of Kashmir Shalimar campus.
The seven-day digital marketing training is organised by SKUAST-K’s School of Agricultural Economics and Horti-Business Management, Faculty of Horticulture under the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) sponsorship.
Vice Chancellor, SKUAST-K, Prof Nazir Ahmad Ganai, who was the chief guest at the inaugural function, emphasised upon outcome-based delivery of the programme and suggested that each participant should be evaluated in each session to ensure better assimilation of the content. Pointing out the existence of a 95% unskilled labour force, he stressed the need for required digital skills. He informed that SKUAST-K will be shortly starting the three-month programme on Digital Marketing in collaboration with DMI, Australia. He asked the participants to take full advantage of the resource persons, who have come from the reputed institutions of the country like IITs.
Director, Planning and Monitoring, Prof Haroon Rashid Naik emphasized imparting precision to the conduct of Advanced-MDP and desired industrial representation and participation in these programmes.
Dean, Faculty of Horticulture, Prof Shabir Ahmad Wani highlighted the need for encouragement of gender-based digital spaces. He also stressed the need for the utilisation of digital spaces for farm-based products.
Head, School of Agricultural Economics and Horti-Business Management, Prof SH Baba, in his welcome address, gave an overview of the programme. He brought out the need for acquiring high-end digital and IT skills for switching to new market jobs by 2030-31 in view of apprehension of job losses due to automation.
Assistant Director, MSME Development and Facilitation Office Srinagar Branch, Ministry of MSME, Saheel Yaqoob Allaqband, who addressed the gathering via online mode, gave a brief account on the importance of Advanced-MDP suggested that the participants should be trained in innovative DPR formulation and attract funding options for their business units.
SKUAST-K’s Director Extension Prof Dil Mohammad Makhdoomi, Director Education Prof MN Khan, Director Research Prof Sarfaraz Ahmad Wani and many other HOD and officers of the university were present at the occasion. The organising secretary of the programme, Dr Omar Fayaz Khan, presented the vote of thanks.
About 30 participants from FPOs, food processing units, Agri-supply chains, aspiring agripreneurs and students are participating in the training.
Under the sponsorship of the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME), SKUAST-K is conducting 66 advanced skill development courses for entrepreneurship in various agricultural and allied vocations.
Arooj’s 3D art captivates memories
Academically-inclined dentist, Dr Syed Juwahira Arooj, who previously taught at the Imam Hussain Paramedical College in Bemina, creates 3D art to preserve memories.
In the month of September 2021, Moulding Memories was created.
Arooj says, “I started creating art during the Covid shutdown. I had casting material at home and the artist in me wanted to make something out of it. I realised it has potential to be in the market, so I launched this business.”
A 28-year-old from Humhama has learnt this technique online for 4 weeks and has also benefited from some YouTube instructions.
Arooj explains, “I used cast material back when I practised dentistry, and the thought occurred to me: why not save the memories by using this technique?”
Moulding combines techniques, procedures, and as well as skills. Moulding is a manufacturing procedure which involves certain steps.
First, an impression is taken, followed by pouring it with impression plaster, and then casting is done. After creating a cast, it is left for cooling and solidification before the colouring takes place and finally framing finishes the process.
For an impression, customers are required to visit Arooj and make an online payment beforehand. Customers contact using the Instagram handle ‘@mouldingmemorieswithArooj – you create memories we craft them‘ and customers are from across Kashmir. The price range begins at Rs 1999. The clientele is quite strong in this line of work.
It takes at most 3 days to complete the casting. Most materials are imported from places other than Kashmir, like Telangana and Gujrat.
“I get the maximum amount of the materials from outside the state, being a budding 3D artist, I’ve kept charges very basic for now,” says Arooj.
“I want people to know about this 3D artwork, it is not that popular here in Kashmir,” says Arooj.
Moulding allows for the creation of a wide variety of designs, it is connected to sculpting in certain ways and is helpful in producing 3D art of anything that someone wants to keep as a solid memory for loved ones.
“People want to preserve what is dear to them in 3D form, and I help them in doing so,” says Arooj.
According to Arooj, designs can be customised to include anything the customer wants to preserve as a memory, such as a hand casting or foot casting of babies, adults or pets.
“Outside J&K people preserve many memories like a blessing hand (Ashirwaad), but since this concept is new here, people usually prefer newborn handprints to be moulded into a memory,” says Arooj.
The moulding process for 3D art is pretty challenging.
“When creating the entire impression needs to be rebuilt if a cast somehow loses a minor part or is distorted,” adds Arooj.
This 3D artwork has attracted a lot of admirers.
One feedback reads, “Beautifully created hand cast, adored it.”
Don’t stop doing this, keep your hopes high, reads another.
Everyone in the family and friends supports Arooj in taking this unusual move in her career.
According to Arooj, “Moulding Memories” is the first of its kind in the valley.
Arooj urged people to be fearless and take chances.
“In order to know how far one can go, without taking chances one can never know their limits,” says Arooj.
“Taking a risk and being optimistic is what one should have in mind while starting something new,” concludes Arooj.
SKUAST-K opens admissions for national, international students
Srinagar, Sept 19: Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology of Kashmir today announced that it will open its campuses for national and international students.
In a jam-packed press conference, Vice Chancellor, SKUAST-K, Prof Nazir Ahmad Ganai, launched the brochure for admission in undergraduate, postgraduate and PhD programmes for national and international students.
“Foreign Nationals, Non-Resident Indians (NRI), Non-Resident Indian Sponsored (NRIs) candidates and candidates from the other States and Union Territories of the country can apply for admission to the UG, Masters and PhD programmes of the SKUAST-K,” Prof Ganai said while addressing the media persons.
He said admission to the various newly introduced short-skill courses is also open for all Indian citizens and foreign national students.
“Kashmir being a crime-free place bestowed with natural beauty and pleasant weather, besides what SKUAST-K has to offer in terms of education, I am sure the university will become a favourite destination for both national and international students,” Prof Ganai said.
The Vice Chancellor said SKUAST-K is the 6th best state agriculture university in the country, has received ‘Band Excellent’ under Atal Innovation Ranking, and was accredited as Grade ‘A’ accredited university by ICAR with incredible research, education and extension credentials. SKUAST-K was the first SAU to implement National Education Policy 2020 and created its place among the top 3 performing universities under National Agricultural Higher Education Project funded by the World Bank.
“As a top ranking university in India, we offer truly international learning ambience and studentship through huge academic infrastructure and state-of-the-art laboratories for high-end research and innovations,” he said.
“We have an innovative team of forward-thinking, nationally and globally connected faculty dedicated to helping the students grow and be able to transform challenges into successes. We are diverse and distinctive in our hospitality, innovative by design and inclusive in approach.”
He said the university offers rigorous academic and relevant research programmes, enabling and engaging for creating leaders that drive the changes with strong competencies and ethics, strategic thinking, collaborative approach and global perspective of issues. Being an innovation-driven university, SKUAST-K has created a strong and conducive ecosystem of innovations for student startups.
Prof Ganai said the main attraction for the national and international students in SKUAST-K is that the university allows them to design what they want to study in the unversity. “We, also provide a flexible platform for students to design their own curriculum for Inter-disciplinary Education (DECIDE to LEED). We help students develop the skills, acquire knowledge, and attain holistic development to empower them to be part of the 4th industrial revolution and enable them to steer knowledge-based technology-driven agri-economy in the world. SKUAST-K is among a few Agricultural Universities in India to have established incubation Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship (SKIIE) and Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning (AIML),” he said.
The connections university has built with industry partners over time help students develop solution skills and improve their employability with leading industrial and corporate houses, Prof Ganai said.
The vice chancellor thanked the Lt Governor and UT administration for providing all administrative, logistic and policy support to achieve the goals of internationalization of education at the university.
Earlier, Deputy Registrar SKUAST-K Parvez Ahmad Bhat opened the press conference to the media persons and OSD to Vice Chancellor, Prof Azmat Alam Khan, presented the vote of thanks.
Any national and international student interested in admission at SKUAST-K can download the admission brochure and apply online by accessing the university website.
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