'SRCC would like to be master of one'
PC Jain, principal of the prestigious college Shri Ram College of Commerce doesn't have any plans to introduce short-term courses as they take the attention and commitment of teachers off from the regular courses.
What gives SRCC an edge over the other commerce colleges of the country?
The parameters set for the excellence for any institution are fulfilled by SRCC in terms of academics, extracurricular, governance, infrastructure and transparency. This creates a perception in the minds of people, particularly students about the credibility of this institution.
The admission to this prestigious institution is based on merit. How fair is that as a criterion for selection? Isn't a Common Entrance Test a more feasible and fair way of selection?
My experience says that this method is a very appropriate method of selection. There is a board in every state. Each child, who is in SRCC, has excelled in his/ her respective board. If a common entrance exam was to be conducted, it is possible many students from small cities might not be able to make it to SRCC. Thus, selecting students on basis of merit gives a national character to college. A recent survey conducted by our college showed that students from 34 different cities and Union Territories study here.
Not only India, we also have students from Afghanistan studying here. Their own country has no educational infrastructure. They would never be able to get quality education if there is an entrance exam.
How active are the students' unions and different societies in the college?
The student's unions and societies in our college are extremely active and vibrant. We have excellent sports infrastructure and we organise various inter and intra college sports events.
Recently, we held an All India Debating competition and attended by 33 teams. A management competition was also organised a few months ago where 43 teams participated from all over India. Feedback was taken from the participants so that improvement can be brought about in our events.
SRCC also won the competition held by NDTV in north campus. We have excelled in every field, be it dramatics, fine arts, cultural activities or sports.
Recently, the college received funds from the alumni association. Does the college plan to utilise those funds in other areas as well?
We have received a sum of Rs 6 lacs for each of our 25 classrooms. The architect has already prepared the estimates for the renovation of classrooms. Once the renovation is done, funds may be employed in other areas as well. In my opinion, all the individuals in a college, be it the principal, teachers or students, have the right to equal facilities. Nobody should be deprived of the benefits that a principal enjoys.
SRCC has a very active Alumni association. How, do you think, can the other colleges emulate this model?
India is a country full of donors. When people can donate on mere stone Idols, then SRCC is a temple of learning. Recently, apart from the alumni association, we also received sponsorships worth Rs 2.5 lakhs. All this faith can only be earned by conviction, dedication and honesty, all of which are a part of our policy. Also, small things, if taken care of, take care of the bigger things.
Recently, the college received a sanction worth Rs 2 crore from UGC and the authorities for a 100-seater hostel. By what time will the students be able to avail this facility?
When we started, there were very few girls in the college. In 1995, we were the first institution to introduce a co-ed hostel. Today, 60 % of students are girls. The rising number of girl students requires increased accommodation.
The architect has been appointed and the final designs are yet to be approved. Once the final designs are approved by UGC and MCD, we'll start with the construction. However, we have to function within a system, so giving an exact date is difficult.
Why are no short-term courses being offered by SRCC?
Our core competency is in providing commerce education. What is the need for SRCC to be jack of all? I would like it to be master of one special field. Many small institutions can provide the short-term courses. However, can any roadside, small institute provide quality education in B.Com (H) or Eco (H) as SRCC does?
Short-term courses take the attention and commitment of teachers off from the regular courses. Today, teachers are available for students even after college hours. This would not be the case if short-term courses were introduced.
Would you like to give any message to the numerous students out there, aspiring to get into the most prestigious college of the country?
I would like to tell all the students to work hard, keeping in mind the spirit for which the institution stands today. The basic foundation of students should be strong and permeated with values.