Prof U Umesh Kumar, the newly-appointed in-charge registrar of Mahatma Gandhi University (MGU), Nalgonda, says the university may conduct its own admissions by 2016-17. Currently, the Osmania University is conducting admissions to several new universities, including MGU, in Telangana. In a brief interaction with Express, Umesh also discusses his plans to develop MGU.
Being registrar of a university which has no regular VC is a burden. Will it not affect your teaching?
I know it’s a great responsibility to work as registrar of a new university like MGU. In the absence of a regular VC, my job becomes all the more difficult. Yet, I want to continue teaching. Teaching is my primary job and administration additional job. I taught chemistry at OU for a long time. I will try to teach at MGU as well. I will return as professor at OU after completing my term at MGU.
What are the immediate challenges you face at MGU?
The university is still in its infancy and there is a lot to be done. We have to improve the infrastructure. A full-fledged library should be made available to the students. Developing the facilities will take long but we are also focusing on academics. We are planning to introduce combination courses with different streams in management courses. We are also planning new courses in micro-biology and computer science.
What are the plans to develop infrastructure?
We want to construct more buildings on the campus. There are only two hostel buildings now and we need more. A hostel for engineering girl students is the immediate need. Construction of new library building is to be finished as soon as possible.
You have worked in the admissions department of OU. Do you plan separate admissions for MGU?
Yes, but it will take time. We have to get adequate infrastructure and faculty. I worked as joint director in the directorate of admissions at OU and I am well aware of the challenges that are involved in conducting admissions. We are preparing to conduct admissions on our own from 2016-17.
MSc (Chemistry) is losing its popularity in Telangana. As a senior professor of chemistry, how do you see this change?
It’s not MSc (Chemistry) alone which has lost popularity in the past few years. Look at the fate of engineering courses. They were the most popular a few years ago but now half of the seats are left untouched. I think the unemployment of chemistry graduates caused the damage. Now we have too many colleges which offer the course, but don’t have skilled teachers. The graduates are unable to meet the industry requirement.