Can NIIT University leverage its content & teaching legacy?
There was a time when IT coaching leader NIIT struggled with regulators like UGC for promoting programs like GradNIIT which was marketed like a degree. But today, NIIT Group has a university in its fold, that can award degrees on its own, in Rajasthan.
Befitting the corporate leader it is - it has two listed companies NIIT Ltd and NIIT Technologies Ltd - the campus and facilities is nothing less than extraordinary. With NIIT co-founders like Rajendra S Pawar and Vijay K Thadani taking active interest and leadership roles in the university, the momentum is indeed there. Both had done their graduate engineering programs at India’s famed IITs.
NIIT University claims to be a not-for-profit institution, but it is not helping it to break away from the self-financing mould. While a luminary like Dr. Karan Singh has agreed to be the university’s Chairperson, the promoters have roped in reputed researchers like Dr. Rajendra Kumar Pandey, as President, Dr. Parimal Mandke as Vice President, and Dr. Sunil Khanna, as the other Vice President.
Operations are made smooth by the presence of Air Commodore (retired) Kamal Singh AVSM as Advisor, and Major Gen Ashok Kumar Singh (retired) as Chief Operations Officer.
But the biggest challenge will be whether NIIT University can leverage its strength in content development, teaching, software, and industry, to make the programs affordable enough for high-quality mainstream students.