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IIM A: Churning Out Top-notch Leaders

With a state-of-art library, an entrepreneurship centre and rich industry relations, IIM Ahmedabad keeps itself on top of ranking lists

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One of the first two management institutes in India, Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIM-A) was established in 1961 — in the leadership of Vikram Sarabhai, Kasturbhai Lalbhai and supported by the then chief minister of Gujarat Jivraj Mehta.

This group involved five actors namely the governments at the centre and the state, the local industrialists, the Ford Foundation and the Harvard Business School to set up this institute in the spirit of public private partnership. IIM-A has been consistently ranked as the top management school not only in India, but it was placed 24th in the Financial Times Global MBA Rankings 2016 — making it among the only three institutes to be featured in this reputed ranking.

Recently, the Central Vigilance Commission commissioned IIM-A to conduct the first-ever ‘integrity index’ to study graft levels in 25 departments and state-run entities. IIM-A offers various management programmes that include Fellow Programme in Management, Post-Graduate Programme in Management, Post Graduate Programme in Food and Agribusiness Management, One Year Post-Graduate Programme in Management for Executives, Faculty Development Programme, and Armed Forces Programme.

Teaching Strength
At IIM-A almost all faculty members have doctorates and most of them have extensive teaching experience in globally-renowned business schools. Also, many of them have substantial full-time industry experience and bring their expertise to the class. IIM-A faculties are also part of executive committees and policy advisors in various public and private corporations, financial institutions, cooperative societies, NGOs, academic institutions and international agencies such as FAO, World Bank, and WTO. Spread across 67 acres of land, the building was designed by noted American architect Louis Kahn. Aside from world-class classoom and dormitories, it provides facilities for games such as soccer, cricket, badminton, lawn tennis, table tennis, basketball, volleyball and hockey. Students can work out in the gym or jog around the beautiful campus. It also has facility for indoor games such as chess, carom and bridge. IIM-A’s library, called the Vikram Sarabhai Library, has nearly 180,000 volumes, 600 current periodicals, 700 CDs and more than 2,000 working papers and dissertations. It also provides indexing search services from a number of major databases like ABI/Inform, Econlit and BSP.

“The best thing about IIM-A is that faculty here encourages us to prepare and discuss our own ideas and find solutions on our own,” says Kumar Abhijeet, 27, a 2015-17 alumnus of PGP-FABM at IIM-A. “This makes us proactive in thinking and self-sufficient, which is proved by the fact that corporates assign and expect a lot more inputs from IIM-A students than any other B-school students during internship stints or on job,” he added.

IIM-A has the Forum for Industry Interaction, which is a student consulting body. Here, IIM-A student teams work with companies on focused consulting projects that acts as a bridge between industry and PGP students of the institute. More than 110 firms participated in the final placement process in 2016. Firms which made the most offers on campus included Accenture Strategy, Amazon, Bain & Co., Flipkart, McKinsey & Co. and The Boston Consulting Group.

The Unique Quotient
IIM-A has a one-of-a-kind centre called Centre for Innovation Incubation and Entrepreneurship (CIIE) that helps entrepreneurs transform ideas into viable businesses. In partnership with mentors, corporates, development agencies, IIM-A community and investors, CIIE cultivates entrepreneurs by incubating, accelerating, mentoring and funding innovative startups. CIIE has partners in Department of Science and Technology, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, International Financial Corporation, SIDBI, Asian Development Bank, GIZ, BP, Godrej Industries.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.

A Sengupta

A journalist who has covered the education beat for Hindustan Times and now pursues research at Observer Research Foundation

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