Can ITM-Gwalior compete against Madhya Pradesh's premier institutes?
ITM University of Gwalior came into existence only in 2011. But ‘Institute of Technology & Management, Gwalior’ or ITM-Gwalior - a BTech/MBA/MCA institute - has been in operation since 1997. The prime mover behind ITM-Gwalior has been the edupreneur Rama Shankar Singh who now serves as the Chairman of the ITM group which goes by the brand name, ‘ITM Universe’, and as the Chancellor of the newer ITM University Gwalior.
Any mention of the word ‘ITM University’ should be preceded by a qualifier like ’City Name’, as there are already three different ITM Universities in existence in this country. And wonder of wonders, all of them were ’Institutes of Technology & Management’ in their initial years. Apparently, this name as well as its acronym ’ITM’ seems to have been a favourite with edupreneurs based in Central India and Northern India.
Anyway, ITM University Gwalior is totally unconnected with ITM University of Gurgaon, Haryana, and ITM University of Raipur, Chattisgarh.
Though Chancellor Rama Shankar Singh runs ITM University through a Trust - like most edupreneurs do it in India - this is largely a family-led enterprise with other trustees being family members like Kanu Priya Singh, Ruchi Singh, and Palak Singh.
Having said that, there is no doubt that the top management also has enough independent professionals like Prof. Dr. Yogesh Upadhyay as Vice Chancellor and Dr. Omveer Singh as Registrar.
The family leadership also doesn’t mean that they are unqualified for handling the key responsibilities. For instance, trustee Ruchi Singh, daughter of the founder, who handles administration as Vice President of ITM University, is an MCA holder, who studied at ITM Gwalior itself.
Despite its young age, ITM University may do well in placements, due to the pedigree of the older ITM Universe, and with the likes of TCS and Infosys already visiting the campus.
But the real challenge is whether the self-financing model followed by ITM Universe and ITM University can offer any competition to Madhya Pradesh’s robust higher education sector led by IIT Indore, IIM Indore, the Indian Institute of Science Education and Research Bhopal, Maulana Azad National Institute of Technology Bhopal, IIITDM Jabalpur, IIITM Gwalior, SPA Bhopal, IIFM Bhopal, National Law Institute University Bhopal, and All India Institute of Medical Sciences Bhopal.
In addition to these premier institutes of national stature, there are more than a dozen public universities of repute that have affiliated more than 500 well-run colleges that offer subsidized professional, science, & humanities education in the state.
But the emergence of private self-financing universities like ITM University Gwalior, despite this massive subsidized system, shows that there is still more appetite for all kinds of degree and postgraduate courses, especially among those students who can’t get an admission in any reputed and subsidised college, but can afford to pay the kind of high fees charged by these private universities.