IIMB racing against time to help IIM-Vizag open next month

It's mentoring the new premier management institute in AP

IIMB racing against time to help IIM-Vizag open next month

Prof Sourav Mukherji, the Dean of Programmes at the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore (IIMB), is a busy man these days. With the responsibility of mentoring the newly sanctioned IIM-Vizag falling on the IIMB, Mukherji, who has been appointed the nodal officer, is fighting against the clock.

The IIM-Vizag is to start functioning by September with the first batch of 55-60 students. As was the case in the past, there is some skepticism among IIM aspirants about the quality of the new IIMs. The IIM-Vizag is one of the six new institutes announced recently by the Union government.

Mukherji has assured that “students (at IIM-Vizag) will not feel a difference”. “Interest in the institute is not a problem. We are getting a great amount of that. However, the question to ask is: Are we getting the right people?”

The plan is to start with the PGP (Post Graduate Programme) in Management in the first year. There will be six core courses per term and two classes a week for every subject. The faculty at IIMB specialising in these courses will teach them at IIM-Vizag. “As many as eight members of the IIMB faculty will teach at the new institute every term and a few others will also be there to oversee the process. In fact, 10 per cent of the 100-member IIMB faculty will be involved in the mentoring programme,” said Mukherji. The two-year PGP course is divided into four terms as at the IIMB.

The IIMB has one of the best placement records among IIMs and business schools in the country. It plans to extend this reputation to placements at the IIM-Vizag too. The IIMB, along with its alumni, will also facilitate industry contact, projects among other things, according to Mukherji.

The IIM will come up on 300 acres of land at Gambheeram village located 25 km from Vizag (also called Visakhapatnam). The foundation stone for the institute’s permanent campus was laid on January 17. It will take at least three years for this campus to be ready. Until then, Mukherji’s concern is to make sure all the necessary facilities are provided at the institute’s temporary campus at Andhra University.

“The concerns right now are very basic. From refurbishing the building in which the classes would be conducted to making sure there are enough toilets to having proper hostel facilities. We are also in the process of identifying flats near the campus and making sure they are secured. We have spoken to a number of realtors. We also have quite an active alumni chapter at Vizag and are reaching out to them to help us,” said Mukherji.

He has already visited Vizag a couple of times. Although the mentorship and hand-holding is only academic in nature, the IIMB may help in the recruitment of faculty too, if requested by the higher-ups. Students may get a chance to get acquainted with their peers and faculty at the IIMB.

 “If the schedule permits, we will try and get them (students) here to get acquainted with various processes such as the functioning of the student body, placements, etc,” Mukherji added. The IIMB has earlier mentored the IIM, Tiruchirapalli in Tamil Nadu, which opened in 2011. 

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