Architecting Successful Career – Dr. Nomesh Bolia, Prof IITD

Prof. Nomesh bolia, IIT Delhi

Areas of Interest:

Operations Research, Stochastic Modeling, Application of MDP to various control problems, Application of OR to logistics and Economics

Education

  • Ph.D., University of North Carolina, Aug 2005-Aug 2009
  • B.Tech. , IIT Bombay

Nomesh2

Winner of multiple awards in the areas of his interests and research; Nomesh has also been involved in the areas of policy making, especially initiated the movements of Vision India foundation, Unnat Bharat Abhiyan

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It was refreshing to see a young, 35+ something young gentleman who rose to address the parents and youth who are stepping into class XI at Sardar Patel Vidyalaya. Indeed, Nomesh, as he introduced himself humorously, he looked more like a fellow youth than a Professor at IIT D.  But, I must tell you, he is awe inspiring, by his vision, outlook and thoughts towards life.

Nomesh started by saying that it is very important to go by your instincts and not to follow any one else. It may be a struggle initially, to understand self, to figure out, but go through it to

– Get your fundamentals of life clear
– have a colorful, enjoyable journey of life
– Appreciate the diversity within and without

Pyramid
———–

Kindly look at your career and life as a pyramid, working from bottom to the top to have a meaningful and purposeful life.

Nomesh Pyramid

– What ever you pick up, the following are must

  • Be Focused and give everything
  • Put in your hard yards of work
  • Be analytical
  • Think out of the box

Nomesh went on to share the stories of youth, who discovered their calling, irrespective of where they started. I have known a few of them. I tried finding their talks and works on youtube to add some flavour to Nomesh’s sharing. Here they are. Will add the rest as soon as I find them.

Pranav misery – Sixth sense, working in the R&D of Samsung. An alum of an engineering college from Gujarat, goes on to work in cutting edge research and evolved sixth sense.

khurshed Batliwala – art of living

Lekh Bajaj – managing stress, IITM

nikhil raj – artificial intelligence, rest of life need not work

Nitin dhakad – jhabua – agriculture market

k subham – policy professionals, govt programs
Hamsa/Bhav – fighting elections
Ankit/me – Vision India – policy decisions related

So tell yourselves

– I do what I want to do
– you choose your pace and place

Nomesh went on to take a few questions from the parents towards the end

Q. What does one go for, if one wants to get into policy making?

Almost all the policy makers emerge from humanities. They understand the contexts and humanity
Economics and subjects from humanities in Class XI will be an ideal choice

Q. How do I find the Aptitude of my child ?
What they like and don’t like
Kindly observe and be aware
Read, read

Nomesh can be reached at nomesh@iitd.ac.in

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Humanities gives skills to face the new world : Dr. Kranti Saran, Ashoka University

Prof Kranti Saran was one of the speakers of eminence to address the students who are stepping into class XI at Sardar Patel Vidyalaya, and their parents. Here I tried to reproduce his inspiring Kranti Sarantalk, to the best of my abilities.

Kranti Saran, currently an Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Ashoka University and a Research Associate at Harvard University, also a visiting faculty in JNU.

His research interests trace a progression of questions about the nature of bodily sensations and bodily spatiality to the nature of introspection of them. From introspection, his interests generalize to the nature of attention. Finally, he is interested in how practices of attention to bodily and mental states can school a subject’s affect in a morally salutary direction.

———————————————- My Journey —————————–
What does a philosopher do?
Most people talk about being super successful
Most of us are not, but still will lead a happy life.

I had scored a 70% in my school, never like today’s 95%+
In school, I was never interested in what we were studying, because of the way we were studying.
I used to read a lot; though disconnected with contextual reality, I always felt thing will work

I had to get into a college. what to do? Never got what I wanted.
Accident happened….philosophy happened.
This was what I was waiting for the whole life.
I fell in love with.
I started liking and doing well in acads
It was a wonderful feeling, but disconcerting too as I was doing well.
….went to Harvard and a few other places too..
———————————————————————————-
Three things I want to share from my learnings.

1. Be prepared to be surprised – in class x, I would have never imagined what I am doing today. Acads? I ran away from it then. It is now rich and rewarding

2. Play to your strengths
A. In our school, if you were smart you did science. I discovered, I had no aptitude for science. 52% in class XII. DO NOT PUSH THE CHILD INTO AN AREA THAT YOU FEEL THEY OUGHT TO BE.

3. what special talent do you have? What is that one thing that you are disproportionately blessed with. Nurture and develop. Disproportionate rewards will come your way.

CAREERS OF FUTURE

careers different from undergrad training? How many here? About 30 odd parents stood up.

When the concept of car was introduced they were called horseless carriages. Now we see Teslas of the world bring in rapid changes

What do we need now?

We need to be flexible to bring the skills to the market place
We need to be adaptable, agile and nimble in the market place

Once upon a time Music industry – was worried about piracy etc. Napster etc happened then.
Apple introduced music service and the music industry has never been the same again.

We do not have models of the world, that the world will change to. Everything is abstract.
Have skills that are nimble, and help you to adapt quickly.

Skill set to have – How Humanities equip you.

What are the particular skills that you learn in classroom?

  • Reasoning and analysis – how do you put the argument
  • Communication to get your ideas and thoughts across
    You are with people all the time, how do you use persuasiveness is the key
  • Feeds into capacity of being a team member, building a team

All these three will help you connect the dots. Helps to think out of the box.

How does it translate into a real world?

1. Jeff bozos of AMAZON

  • Asks subordinates to write a detailed memo In advance and share
  • Everyone reads, be prepared before they come to the meeting

Why?
– clear writing shows clarity of thought
– well thought-out ideas emerge

2. Have you ever read any IPO document?

  • IPO document of Twitter will tell you details
  • Founders are not techies in under grad
  • Almost all of them are from arts, humanities,…

So, select Class XI subjects such a way that they make you flexible and adaptable.

You can get in touch with Kranti Saran at Saran@ashoka.edu.in
Thanks to the web for photograph of Kranti Saran. The rights belongs to the owner.

Need to revisit the curriculum at design schools, including NIFT/NID : Be Entrepreneurial

It was a pleasure and privilege to be part of the Jury of the finals of the first All India #NIFT HG #business plan competition at @n.i.f.t national HQ in Delhi. It is indeed an honour and joy to start a new journey of contributing to the #design #education and fostering #entrepreneurship in design schools of the country.

Today, we have 16 NIFT campuses across the country. Five finalists emerged from the six month long competition that started from each of the 16 campuses. This initiative by #HarishGupta, an #NIFT alum of 1991 batch is praiseworthy and has the potential of #transforming the #design #education in #India.
In the pic include the visionaries who have given shape and are still giving to not only NIFT but also design as a edu-vertical and industry in the country. first DG Mrs Rathi (IAS) and current DG Mrs Sharda (IAS). Also seen are pioneer in #womenentrepreneurship @cwei Mrs Shashi, the founding CEO of Lacoste in India, Jayant, Harish Gupta of fashion learning, Praveen of Pincap fintech and other eminent roleholders in the NIFT fraternity Prof Sibichan, Prof Prabir, Prof Sudha, Prof Sohail…

The Jury was chaired by Mr Ganesh Natarajan, now an entrepreneurial mentor and investor, who has been known for spearheading Aptech at one point of time.

My few take aways from being part of the Jury..

A. The students taken in by the NIFT/NIDs may be creative, but the institutions need to invest in their personality transformation. You can present yourselves, create opportunities and clinch deals only if you are articulate and are convincing.

B. There is a dire need for instittutions to create a larger vision for themselves that can impact society in various ways, not limited to churning graduates. The four years of education needs to integrate with the external world. Break the insulated existence.

C. Then comes the need facilitate students to create their vision for life. Greater the integration with the external world through excercises of bringing outside world into classrooms and taking classrooms to the outsideworld, higher will be facilitation of students to have a better vision.

D. Need to foster entrepreneurial mindset as part of evolution of a student during the four years. This happens only when the institution is entrepreneurial, faculty is entrepreneurial, the processes are entrepreneurial. The institution should think of a few challenges/problems in its city as projects that could add immense value to the society, and solve them through their expertise; bring in relevant corporates to sponsor (csr), integrate these projects with the curriculum, at least in the 3rd and 4th year. Initiate the students into a structured entrepreneurial curriculum in the second year.

E. Of course embrace and institutionalize the competitions like NIFT HG business plan competition to help students participate, validate their ideas, create incubation possibilities. The funds will pour in. I am sure there are many investors like me who want to bet on the horses with potential.

F. The institutions need to tell themselves that they will incubate half a dozen endeavours/companies every year.

A stitch in time saves nine, as they say. It is time for NIFTs and NIDs to restitch in time to infuse energies.

Time to take off.

#careerlauncher

What Now? After class XII results : On Zee Business Panel

Every year, this time of the year is a challenging time for most students who are graduating from school. The expectation that is thrust on each by the families and society really takes toll on every child.

It is very important to understand the child and help the child have confidence in himself or herself, in their capabilities. Through the school, facilitate the child to understand self and the world around, by exposing, exploring, experimenting, experiencing, imbibing in many contexts, across a variety of spaces in those eight intelligence dimensions – linguistic, logical/mathematical, spatial, nature, kinesthetic, Musical (read the article Every child is gifted).

The world is looking for problem solvers and shall dish out anything to have such on their board. Money is never a problem. Be a learner for life time, have courage to push boundaries, to discover what more you are; Be humble in any given situation… So much more in this panel discussion with renowned career counsellor, Ms Pravin Malhotra.

If you have any more thoughts or doubts can surely write to me sreeni@careerlauncher.com

DU first cut-off list…… Was on DD News Night : What should be the way ahead for INDIA?

Sreeni was in the panel discussion on Delhi University cut-offs of 2014 and way ahead …

Once again it was that time of year when the Delhi University announced the first cut-offs for various colleges under it, late last night and was made public this morning by the newspapers.

This year was more special because the date for announcing was deferred following the chaos created by the UGC vs DU wrangle on scrapping Four YEAR undergrad prog! UGC under the very same Chairperson who was praising the FYUP last year, did a volte-face on FYUP this year. The govt changed and so did the sing-song! When will our ‘EDUCATION LEADERS’ and ‘POLITICAL LEADERS’ see education as key to eradication of all ills? As long as education system is a tool in their hands for personal fights and glory, nothing can improve.

Anyways, after the roll back of FYUP, the cut-offs were announced and lo behold, again 100% was the cut-off for a few courses in a couple of not so sought-after colleges! How? Why?

Doordarshan had called me to be on the panel to discuss the issue of DU cut-off list this year. In the DD studios I was with Dr. Pradhyuman Sharma, Principal, The Hindu college in the Hindi news bulletin, while I was with Dr. Varshney, Dean, Student affairs, South Campus of Delhi University in the English bulletin; while Mr. Ashok Ganguli, ex-chairperson, CBSE linked from Lucknow; We also had a student, who have had tough times in the DU admission process, in each of the bulletin, in the studios.

Issues discussed –

High cut-offs? When students get 100% in Psychology and English, obviously the colleges have to keep the cut-offs at the maximum. Otherwise they may be inundated with so many forms and if they have to accept all of those who apply, then they had it. I got to know during the interactions, that a couple colleges were at the receiving end last year – over 1200 had to be admitted, when they thought an in-take of 180 for a particular course, as the college’s cutoff was low! So colleges are playing safe this year.

Mr Ashok Ganguli spoke – in the CBSE results, over 60000 student scored more than 92% in Maths; many got 100% in English! He was talking about the grace marks being given, liberal corrections etc that has made it worse..

Education and Curriculum! Should our school education not orient towards skills and problem solving than rote learning and re-production. That is the only way to get out of this madness of 100% scores and Merit lists!! And get students with capabilities into higher education..

Applications : Every student hedges. Most students do not really know what they want to do in life. Hence they apply to inexplicable number of courses in as many colleges..This year there were 2,75,000+ applications for mere 54000 seats…. In all possibility the number of applicants may be 1.5 lakh, if we consider each one applying for multiple courses / colleges!

Elimination vs Selection Why should the DU admissions be an elimination process? why cannot it be a selection process? why should it not have entrance exams for every course? In fact, the existing entrance exams for courses in English, Journalism too got abolished!! The entrance exams may get even not so high-scorers in board, but better off for the course!

Why only Delhi? Why should DU get applicants from Dibrugarh, Ladakh, Pondicherry, chennai, Bangalore……. Is Delhi University, only centre for excellence? Do we as a nation lack any other centre of excellence?

  • In the nation rankings of colleges, about only 20% of the colleges from DU come in the list, eighty percent are from other centres of excellence. Then why such a rush to Delhi? Should we convert a few of those outstanding colleges across the country to convert into universities with a few more colleges under their wings to mentor to increase their quality and standings.
  • Is it the eco-system around the Delhi University that is most attractive and productive? or Is it a life-style choice? Is it the centre-of-power of the nation….Is there more opportunities here for student?

More colleges? Is having more colleges in Delhi university the solution? How many more colleges will we have? Should you convert top colleges into universities with multiple campuses across the country?

Why only a few courses?  Do only these courses offer potential employment? Is it a flock mindset? How do we counsel and mentor students, their parents and families to opt for those courses and subjects that the students have natural flair for? Can the universities / colleges work with schools to help them facilitate this process? Should it not be the role of every faculty / professor to mentor students in the class?

Entry of TOP foreign universities a solution? This has been lying in the cold storage for a long time. With middle-class families having more and more disposal income in their hand, with crunch of quality colleges, are looking at top universities of the world. Indians spend about $20 billion annually to get their education abroad! The universities abroad are eyeing Indians along with Chinese to fill their coffers! Will these families look at the best of the colleges setting up campuses in India? Of course, there are issues of – which universities will come to India? What is the pricing point at which families lap it up? How will we ensure quality of world standard? How will we attract the FACULTY of that caliber?

Is TECHNOLOGY the way ahead? The numbers in the future are going to increase for sure, with 75% of the population expected to be under the age of 24 by 2020! The problem is going to get compounded as we go along. Should as a nation we not look for solutions that will address this issue. This can be addressed with a two pronged approach –

Can we not lay emphasis on exit exams than the entrance gates?

  • Can we not allow students to apply for any course of his or her choice irrespective of what scores they get?
  • Can we not create Exit examination tough enough to award only those who are really good.
  • Let the duration of the program be decided by the quality of the student… one may finish the program in two years, while a few may take even 7-10 years

Can we have an outstanding HYBRID model (BEAM-CLICK-Brick & Mortar) with a huge emphasis in virtual facilitation

  • Pool the outstanding faculty talent from across the country to create / can video sessions on every subject and upload on the web to access
  • Have all the contents / notes online for students to peruse and study
  • Have doubt clearing sessions live with faculty to interact ; thousands can attend these sessions at one go, with a good mechanism
  • Have surprise tests, short and long tests, and track performances
  • Unsatisfactory performances should compel the student to repeat that segment/course of the programme
  • There can be a few contact sessions with eminent faculty…

For me it will not be a wonder if quite a few who undergo the technology-facilitated programme out-perform those who are admitted to campus-based  programmes. I have had an exposure of over 14 years in this space of tech-facilitated learning and I can vouch for this way! Indeed there will be a great opposition for this model – one of the co-panelist was very vehement! But that is the way… Best of the world universities (MIT, Stanford, Harvard…) are going on to this platform, launching their MOOCs – ….. Phoenix set the tone!

Our own IITs and IISc came together to initiate NPTEL (https://www.youtube.com/user/nptelhrd) to provide learning resources to Engineering students from those engineering colleges across the country that lack quality faculty and learning resources. This can be made more interesting and compelling…… by integrating with compulsory hands-on-learning with SMEs in such a way that the students get practical exposure while the SMEs get keen manpower….

We certainly need someone at the HRD ministry with a grand vision for our nation! Else we will be doing the delta changes and will go back and forth with protestations coming from all directions. This government has a mandate, it needs to take those bold steps to make a bit difference to the real driver – EDUCATION – for the nation’s excellence in every space.

I rest my thoughts here…..kindly share your thoughts here …

Convocation of class of 2013, IWSB

Convocation of class of 2013, IWSB

Convocation of class of 2013, IWSB

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Convocation of class of 2013, IWSBConvocation of class of 2013, IWSBConvocation of class of 2013, IWSBConvocation of class of 2013, IWSBConvocation of class of 2013, IWSBConvocation of class of 2013, IWSB
Convocation of class of 2013, IWSBConvocation of class of 2013, IWSBConvocation of class of 2013, IWSBConvocation of class of 2013, IWSBConvocation of class of 2013, IWSBConvocation of class of 2013, IWSB
Convocation of class of 2013, IWSBConvocation of class of 2013, IWSBConvocation of class of 2013, IWSBConvocation of class of 2013, IWSBConvocation of class of 2013, IWSBConvocation of class of 2013, IWSB

Convocation of class of 2013, IWSB, a set on Flickr.

The convocation ceremony, the Ceremonial evening at IWSB, for the class of 2013 was much awaited. Usually the convocation happens before the class joins the corporate world in the month of March. Since this batch did their second year as exchange program students at BIMTECH, the convocation had to be deferred, to receive their grade sheets etc.

Prof Navneet, Prof Raju Mazumdar, Prof Sunil Joshi, Prof Bhumika, Prof Rajeev Ranjan along with the families and friends of the class attended the ceremonial evening.

The evening was graced by Mr. Vishwadeep Bajaj, Founder Chairman and MD, ValueFirst, one of the most valued telecom companies of 2012. Vishwadeep delivering his convocation address shared the lessons learnt during the last twenty five years while tracing his journey of ups and downs, exaltations and disappointments. He summarized the learnings as –

a. Have a vision, be passionate about it. Dream Big!

b. Once you dream, share it with the larger world

c. Believe that the dream has already come true..

He related this with his journey of great self-belief that he always carried since his early college days, of being an entrepreneur. His only aim was to be one and he chased it, tried his hands at a variety of things, with singular aim of being an entrepreneur. The journey took him through various industries and countries, each time a new path emerged, whenever he hit a dead end. Today, Vishwadeep is one of the most celebrated and valued visionary in the Mobile and digital communications industry.

Satya, while picking up from what Vishwadeep said, shared that all that Vish said is indeed true; but the most important factor that helps one really succeed in life is – disciplined execution. He reminded the class of 2013 that pay attention to every detail and every small commitment you make. Value every individual and task, irrespective of how big or small. The greatest of the victories on our journeys happen only when we abide by this fundamental value – discipline.

With their favourite faculty Navneet and Raju around, who shared a few jovial moments with the batch the evening came to an end. The dream of most of the students, of wearing a ceremonial gown and getting their degrees has been fulfilled. The class had a wonderful time, capturing their selfies and throwing their hats!

Wishing each one a great journey ahead. Love you all guys… take care..

Sreeni in a panel discussion on DU admission cut-offs – News Night, Doordarshan 8:30-9:00pm

Sreeni was in the panel discussion on Delhi University cut-offs of 2013 and way ahead …

The Delhi University announced the first cut-offs for various colleges under it, late last night and was made public this morning by the newspapers. There was joy on many faces, but more faces showed somber mood within. A couple of colleges had 100% as cut-off in the B.Tech computer science courses, while a few stopped short of it by saying 99.75%, a little consolation, for honours courses in Commerce and Economics.

Do colleges have any choice? I wonder and so do many, that, how can someone get 100% even in subjective courses like psychology and economics; one can understand in courses like Mathematics and Physics. And the trend is not limited to CBSE, it has been with many state boards too. Wish all these 100%agers bring a few more Noble Prizes for India, on their journey of life.

– Delhi University has received over 2.5 Lakh applications this year. Now on an average, every student has applied to 6-8 courses across the colleges… How many distinct applicants really?
– Most of the students do not really know what they want to do in life, so hedging across courses.
– And going to DU. to a college in the north campus is a lifestyle statement; Parents want an epaulet; students want to be the ‘in’ thing out there

What will the colleges of the university do when students with such high scores apply, and in so many numbers, from across the country? Only possibility is, look at the trend of scores of the students this year, and look at the trend of final choices by the students in the last couple of years for your college, and take out cut-off for each of the courses, hoping such and such numbers would join. If students play games in applying, colleges play with cut-offs.

On Doordarshan’s News Night, this evening, we had discussion on the current scenario – Cutt-offs, pressures on students, their parents and family, the choices that they have……. The News Anchor was Gautam and my fellow co-panelists were Prof Pradhyuman, Principal, The Hindu College, DU and two young girls – Amrita, aspiring for the journalism and mass-communication course and Ruchika, an enthusiastic economic honours aspirant. Both Amrita and Ruchika did not make it in the first cut-offs list, but hoping to make it in the next.

In the English panel, we had on panel, Mrs Usha Albequerque and the principal of Deen Dayal Upadhyay college of the Delhi university.

The discussion was on the way ahead for students and the university too!…. variety of ideas discussed

– Why not have entrance exams for all courses and have weightage for class XII marks and entrance exams too so that so many talented 60-70% students too will have a chance to showcase their aptitude for the subject and enter
– Why not have more colleges in Delhi university
– Why not more universities – The best of the colleges of DU can be converted into universities and compel to open up in larger campuses
– Why this flock mentality among students, only for certain courses, and to north campus?
– Why no focus among the students, and applying for a variety of courses; what can family and society do
– Why not to other universities in the NCR or elsewhere in the country, so many good colleges exist
– What pressures play on students from family and society, how to facilitate them…

whether you had watched the show or not, I am sure you too will have a few things to say… kindly share your thoughts here …

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