Focusing on education, accessibility of it to all

SRM (AP) VC takes part in global conference

S. Vishnu Sharma, INN/Chennai, @svs037 

Global education is not a catchword anymore. It is the new reality for education in the coming decades. The global University is the best opportunity to meet the education challenges of the future, said Jamshed Bharucha, Vice Chancellor, SRM University (Amaravati, AP).
He said this at four day working conference on ‘Architecting the Future Global University’ organised by  New York based Rockefeller Foundation. The conference tackled a two-fold concern for educational institutions namely, the inaccessibility of education to millions of students and inability of the branded residential institution model not being able to scale up to the global demand.
At a time when the needs are far greater than the capacity of any single institution the mandate was to bring together the world’s most innovative and entrepreneurial minds to devise a suitable approach to strategic planning, he said. Traditional universities are not designed to address the surging global demand for quality higher education, Bharucha pointed out. We explored innovative solutions that create networks of universities and employ the best technology to bring students and faculty together from across the world. 
SRM Amaravati already plays a key role being the only participating institution that has the capacity to innovate in ways that entrenched institutions cannot, he said. Recognizing that global challenges cannot be solved by any one methodology or accepted set of scholarly practices, the participants examined ways to architect a truly inclusive university that knows no impediments to world-wide learning and applied research collaboration.
The conference also examined the question of what kind of a work force will be best equipped for the future underscores a pressing need for a global ecosystem that supports accessible, diverse, varied and effective lifelong learning. 
The conference is the brainchild of John Mitchell, professor of computer science and former Vice Provost at Stanford, Robert Lue of Harvard and Simone Buitendijk of Imperial College, Leiden University Medical Centre. David Leebron, President of Rice University and Jim Chandler of the University of Chicago were among the participants in the conference.

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