NEW DELHI: As part of its new initiative under the National Education Policy (NEP) 2020 to bring industry and professional expertise into academic institutions through a new position called ‘Professor of Practice,' the University Grants Commission (UGC) on Friday nudged business chambers to join academia to help students acquire skills to meet the industry demands.
In separate letters to the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), NASCOM, Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and ASSOCHAM, UGC Secretary Prof Rajnish Jain said the NEP 2020 recommends transformative reforms in the higher education sector.
“The main thrust of the policy is the promotion of holistic and multidisciplinary education. Integration of academic scholarship with practical experience is an important step in the context of holistic and multidisciplinary education,” the letter said.
The letter said that the UGC had taken a new initiative of engaging the 'Professor of Practice' in Higher Educational Institutions (HEls).
It said that “engaging distinguished experts from industries will help students acquire the skills and expertise necessary to meet the industry demands.”
“We look forward to your active involvement and cooperation to give wide publicity of the scheme so that distinguished experts from industries may avail the opportunities to join academia,” it added.
In a separate mail to vice-chancellors of universities, institutions, and principals of all colleges were also requested to take necessary steps to engage 'Professor of Practice' according to the requirement and by following the guidelines.
The position was created to help bring real-world practices and experiences into the classrooms and augment the faculty resources in higher education institutions.
In turn, the industry and society will benefit from trained graduates with relevant skills.
The objective was also to develop courses and curricula to meet the industry and societal needs and enable the HEIs to work with industry experts on joint research projects and consultancy services which will be mutually beneficial.
The idea was also to bring in distinguished experts from various fields, including engineering, science, technology, entrepreneurship, and management, into the academic institutions, and to enable the HEIs to formally associate with persons of eminence and encourage them to participate in experiential learning, research, training, skilling, entrepreneurship and extension and to play a mentoring role.
According to the guidelines, the number of Professors of Practice in an HEI, at any point in time, should not exceed 10 percent of the sanctioned posts in an HEI. The position could be either part-time or full-time and would be decided between the expert and the institution. The tenure should not exceed three years, a maximum of four.