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'Our Law Students Have Been Placed In Top Firms In India And Abroad'

Aditya Swarup, Assistant Director at the International Institute of Higher Education and Capacity Building and the Assistant Dean, International Collaborations talks about institute's legacy and the criteria for admission

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In 2009, O.P. Jindal Global University (JGU), a non-profit global university, established by the Haryana Private Universities in Sonipat. The University Grants Commission has accorded its recognition to O. P. Jindal Global University. The vision of JGU is to promote global courses, global programmes, global curriculum, global research, global collaborations, and global interaction through a global faculty.

Today the university inducts more than half of the MBA students with renowned consulting, FMCG, e-commerce, digital marketing, research & hospitality companies.

Continuous improvements and innovations in academic systems, curriculum and programme delivery have contributed to making JGU a preferred university/school which provides leadership development and executive education, behavioural sciences and higher education research and capacity building.

In an e-mail interview, Aditya Swarup, Assistant Director at the International Institute of Higher Education and Capacity Building and the Assistant Dean, International Collaborations talks about institute's legacy and the criteria for admission with BW Businessworld's Poonam Kumar.

What are the core values of OP Jindal Global University? What makes it any different from the numerous other universities in the country?

The core values of the University include the creation of a vibrant research environment, intellectual engagement across disciplines, capacity building and nurturing socially responsible leaders amongst its students. I personally believe that the emphasis placed by the University on academic freedom, research and innovation, in turn, encourages each of our students to think critically and beyond the classroom. The University achieves this by taking on board some of the best and highly qualified faculty; we have over 220 full-time faculties, each of whom has PhDs or at least a master's qualification from a reputed university and have published substantial research over the years. In the short span since its inception, the faculty have produced over 800 publications and I think the sheer number and quality of these publications is staggering. The students at JGU, in turn, benefit from learning under these faculty. The benefits of our academic culture are borne out from the fact that in 2016, JGU was accredited and awarded the highest rating, "A Grade" by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC). It is a truly remarkable distinction for a university which is only seven years old.

What is the admission procedure? How much weightage is given to the various parts (GD, interview, entrance test Score) during the evaluation process?

The university has six different schools, each of which has its own procedures for admission and I'd invite you and the reader to kindly visit our website for further details. With respect to the Business School, a student needs a minimum 60 per cent in his class XII (any board) to be eligible to apply for the BBA (Hons) and the integrated BBA (Hons) plus MBA courses. Additionally, the student is required to give either the SAT, UGAT-2017 or the Jindal Scholastic Aptitude Test (JSAT). We generally look at the candidate getting over 50% in the tests and about the same weightage is given to the interview.

With respect to the MBA program, the student needs a minimum 50 per cent in his/her bachelor's degree and must have taken either the CAT, MAT, ATMA, CMAT, XAT, GAT, GRE or the JSAT. The selection is made on the basis of the overall profile and score of the candidate on the basis of the graduation marks, entrance exam scores and a personal interview.

How much is the average CAT score cut-off for your management programme? OR Do you conduct your own entrance exam for post grads courses?
Given that the candidate is offered admission on the basis of his or her overall profile, there is no cut-off of the CAT score. As mentioned earlier, we do conduct our own exam, i.e. the JSAT but it is not compulsory that the candidate gives the exam.

Do you have any exchange programme tie-ups with international universities?
One of the other distinguishing facets of JGU is its emphasis on global engagements with numerous universities across the world. We have over 160 Memoranda of Understanding (MOUs) with some of the most reputed and world-class universities including the University of Oxford, Harvard University, Yale University, Columbia University, ISDE Madrid and the University of Taiwan. The number of MOUs aren't just a statistic on paper and we constantly endeavour to substantially benefit from them. To this end, we pursue research collaborations, student and faculty exchange programs and short-term study abroad programs with these universities. Once again, I think this sets JGU apart from other Indian universities.

A student at JGU can pursue a semester abroad on exchange at any of these universities and we are overwhelmed at the immense benefits that accrue to the student after pursuing an exchange programme. Similarly, short-term study abroad programs are undertaken in the months of June/July where the students, accompanied by faculty, spend three weeks in these universities and undertake credit courses.

What is the percentage of international students in the university at the moment? What initiatives are you taking to attract the international students?
JGU's vision for international students is two pronged; first, to offer students from emerging and low-income countries a globally competitive higher education experience, incorporating the best practices and cultures from the top universities in the world and at a much lower financial cost than other overseas destinations. Second, to ensure collaborative partnerships with institutions from high-income countries by providing their students not just and opportunity to undertake courses at JGU but also with shorter-term, non-degree opportunities to study at JGU. To this end, we have over 50 international students on campus.

How has the placement scenario been? Are students' satisfied, average salaries over the years, PPOs, etc.? Pl elaborate on the kind of companies and salaries that are offered at your college.
We launched our integrated BBA (Hons) plus MBA program only in 2013 and the BBA (Hons) program in 2016 and hence, don't have a graduating batch yet. With respect to our MBA program, more than half of the students who availed of our recruitment program were placed with renowned consulting, FMCG, e-commerce, digital marketing, research & hospitality companies.

As regards the other schools, it gives me great pleasure to say that students from our law school have been placed in top companies and firms in the country and abroad. A large number of our students from different schools are also pursuing post graduate programs in some of the top universities in the world, including at Oxford and Cambridge. Some of our students are also pursuing careers in litigation and with international organisations.

What kind of efforts is OP Jindal Global University carrying out to improve alumni networks?
JGU has a registered alumni society and though it's been only a couple of years since the university's inception, with over 500 students graduating and joining some of the best companies, firms or universities in the world, we envision highly active alumni network. At the centre of our vision, is the creation of a bond and a sense of pride and belonging amongst our students. One of the advantages of having a fully residential campus is that there is an interaction space not just for students of different batches but also amongst the different schools of the university. This benefits both the students and alumni by encouraging collaborations amongst them and furthers our vision for the alumni. The alumni society also organises numerous get-togethers, talks and professional events that help in this vision.

What kind of extra-curricular activities are students involved in? How important do you think these activities are in an overall personality development?
The university ensures that its students are active all year round to make the college atmosphere holistic and lively. Over 25 student-run societies devoted towards academic and cultural progress have been institutionalised and nurtured at JGU. Student representatives from these societies have participated and won in National as well as International level competitions and have brought laurels to the University. The debating society is a student-run society with more than forty speakers and adjudicators. The sports society has facilitated the participation of students in various intra and inter-college tournaments. The student societies have successfully organised its inter-college social (Biswamil) and sporting festival (Magnus) for many successive years on campus. The JGU Literary and Fine Arts Society is a student initiative which has organised academic events such as the Book Club, Wall Magazine, Meraki (college Magazine currently under production), Animus Maximus (the Annual Literary festival) and several panel discussions by distinguished guest speakers. We also have societies promoting social service, business development, start-ups and incubation, human rights and gender related issues.

Any message for students seeking admission to the university?

The higher education sector in India is in a precarious position today with few universities emphasising on critical learning beyond the classroom and the overall development of the individual. JGU aspires to impart quality education by imbibing the best practices from the top universities in the world through its vast global network and partnerships. Its vision is global and its benchmarks are international. In addition to the considerations mentioned earlier, I think any decision a student has to make with respect to choosing a university boils down to the faculty, infrastructure, intellectual rigour and extra-curricular facilities - areas in which we continually strive to achieve the best.

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