Institutes in India and the US will join hands to create a pool of trained mid-career academicians, so they could be groomed into potential leaders as part of a long-term objective to strengthen the Indian educational structure.
This is part of a proposal, for which the three institutions were awarded the Obama-Singh 21st Century Knowledge Initiative Grant, as announced by US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton recently. Robert M Hendrickson, interim director and senior scientist at the Centre For Study of Higher Education, Penn State University, told HT that besides onsite sessions from May 19 to May 23, 2013, at Penn State, six virtual sessions would be scheduled during the 2013-2014 on topics selected by participants.
As many as 30 heads from the Indian higher education field are expected to participate in the academy. Elaborating further, Prof Hendrickson said, “The academy has been set up to provide foundational knowledge to help academic administrators of higher education institutions become more effective administrators of academic units. Several higher education leaders and vice-chancellors from India will be present at the Academic Leadership Academy, to be held from June 24 to June 28. They will help put topic areas in an Indian context for the 2013 India Academic Leadership Academy.”
Speaking on the matter, he said, “The Academic Leadership Academy was originally developed to address the problem of developing leadership vacuum created by the retirement of 50% academic leaders in the US. With the development of new post secondary institutions in India, there is a growing need for quality academic leadership.”
Tata Institute of Social Sciences professor B Venkatesh Kumar, who is the project leader from the Indian side said: “We will identify potential candidates from universities and institutes who are mid-career, and then put them through a process of training and mentoring.”