Upon the completion of his what some would describe as ‘tumultous’ tenure at Delhi University, vice-chancellor Dinesh Singh has no regrets. Singh completes his tenure at the university on Wednesday. He said that there were certain initiatives that he could have taken but was not able to do so.
“I wanted to start pedagogical changes in the way education is imparted which is limited to blackboard and textbooks. I wanted to connect education with the real world and FYUP was a step in that direction. But unfortunately things did not work out,” he told HT in an exclusive interview a day before his term ends on October 28.
But the VC, who faced many brickbats for implementing FYUP, said he was extremely proud of the system. “It was a big initiative. Perhaps its’ time will come in future. I am very proud of it,” he said.
Singh said he wanted to introduce a system of tech-based education which would have allowed thousands of students to get certificate from DU while accessing classroom lectures online. “Lakhs of students graduate each year but we can’t admit them all. After having studied online students could approach us for certification. We could have devised a plan for certification process,” Singh said.
Bringing in a system which would have allowed transfer of credit for actively taking part in extra-curricular activities to academic subjects, was one of the initiatives which Singh said he wanted to implement.
“There should be a system which would allows students, who actively take part in NSS, NCC and sports, to get credit in their academic subject. I wanted to implement that in DU but could not. If you are a history student but are part of any sports then you should get credits for that in academics also,” said Singh.
Singh said that he could not implement these initiatives as most of his time in the last couple of years was spent in managing FYUP and its rollback. Singh counted the establishment of Cluster Innovation Center (CIC) and a culture of innovation in DU colleges as one of his biggest achievements.
“I created a culture of innovation in the university. We have established incubation centres which has helped undergraduate students in launching start-ups. Colleges have acquired patents, written research papers and launched start-ups. At CIC there is a batch of students who all have start-ups and they don’t want to take up jobs,” he said.
Singh, who studied at St Stephen’s College, will demit office after courting controversy over FYUP. He faced allegations of academic and administrative irregularities towards the end of his tenure by teaching community. He is also be the only VC in the 93-year-old history of DU to be issued a show-cause notice by the HRD ministry.