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Featured College of the Month: Marwadi University, Rajkot

– Article by Sheetal Sohoni.

Indo Universal Collaboration of Engineering Education (IUCEE) started in 2008 with the mission and vision of changing the way engineering education is perceived in India. It created ripples in otherwise calm stream of education system in India, and successfully attracted attention of various engineering institutions across India. Marwadi University became a consortium member institution of IUCEE in 2015.

Marwadi Education Foundation’s Group of Institutions (MEFGI) was incepted as a major organ of Marwadi Education Foundation in 2008, under the Bombay Public Trust Act 1950. Marwadi University is promoted by Marwadi Shares and Finance Limited (MSFL) a major stock broking company in India, and Chandarana Intermediaries Brokers Pvt. Ltd. (CIBPL), a leading firm dealing in technical and arbitrage trading in Indian Stock Markets. Based on the credibility of the group, Marwadi University bill was passed in Gujarat Assembly, and Marwadi University was established by Gujarat Private Universities act 9 of 2016 on 9th May 2016.

Rajkot has been selected in the list of 100 smart cities, an initiative launched by Ministry of Urban Development in 2015. This will ensure further growth and development of the city and better connectivity with cities across India and the world. Marwadi Univeristy realized that it needed to proactively bring in changes in the engineering education system to make its graduates ready for the new challenges and job opportunities. The university is committed to create an effective teaching and learning environment for all the stakeholders (teachers and students), and has taken multiple steps to ensure this.

The university is committed to provide IIEECP certification for all its faculty members. So far, 85 faculty members have completed the certification, 180 faculty have completed Phase I of the certification, and more than 100 have completed Phase II. Dr. Rajendrasinh Jadeja, dean and professor at Marwadi University, is one of the faculty who has completed the IIEECP certification. He has been pioneer to implement IIEECP certification for all engineering faculty members. He believes in outcome based learning. Dr. Jadeja stated that the teaching philosophies discussed during the program influenced and helped in forming his own teaching and learning philosophies, and made him more empathetic towards students issues.

Marwadi University created a cluster of industry and academia professionals to understand and bridge the gap between industry’s expectation and college curricula. The university has made changes in its curriculum as per academia and industry experts’ suggestions and implemented choice based credit system. Dr. Amit Lathigara, associate professor and head of the department of Computer Engineering stresses the importance of project-based learning and continuous assessment of students, rather than end semester exams. Amit shared his experience of using flipped classroom and its impact on students’ motivation. According to him, flipped classes have not only improved students’ motivation but also their attendance and grades. According to Dr. Jadeja, in three and half years, the average student attendance has gone up from 51% to 83%, which reinforces Dr. Lathigara’s observations. As a part of teaching and learning process, the university is evaluating students’ performance related to technical and soft skills through external agencies each semester. As per the feedback received from agencies, Marwadi University has implemented corrective measures, and statistics of placements are indicative of the effectiveness of the programs.

Dr.Y.P Kosta, provost of the university, believes in the importance of effective communication skills (both verbal and written). To initiate effective communication, project based learning and competitions (hackathon and conferences) are incorporated as a part of the regular curriculum. The focus of the effective communication drive is for all involved stakeholders (students and teachers). This initiative will prepare students to march towards industry readiness, and will make learning joyful and thriving. And for the teachers, it will provide creative insight about how students’ learn, and thus will provide teachers an opportunity to improve their teaching.

The university believes in the philosophy of unity in diversity, and has faculty from 22 states across India. 80% students at the university are from Gujarat region, 15% from across India, and 5% are international students (from countries like: Syria, Nepal, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Myanmar, Mauritius, Bhutan and Mozambique). The demographic distribution of the university is about 40% female and 60% male (for students as well as faculty members). The university has also created a Women Cell for motivating and supporting female engineering students, and improving participation of this demographic in the engineering field.

Success of any organization depends upon its members and their commitment for the mission. IUCEE is able to spread its mission across India because of torchbearers like Marwadi University. IUCEE team extends their warm wishes and thanks to Marwadi University for their support!