We shrink the world by connecting its people. Chitkara University envisioned internationalization of education almost a decade back by exposing its students to the premier institutions of the world and bringing those institutions, students and faculty to India, at Chitkara University. One initiative that has proven to be a catalyst is Chitkara University’s Global Week that celebrated its tenth anniversary in this October of 2018 by hosting 72 international faculty, fostering knowledge transfer and diversity through cross-cultural exchange, teaching international pedagogy, collaborated learning, faculty mentoring and much more.
Welcoming the guests and formally kick-starting the event, Chitkara University Vice-Chancellor, Dr. Madhu Chitkara, said, “Chitkara University is proud to host Global Week, Season 10. For the our students, we are committed to supporting a diverse community of faculty scholars who make a difference in their fields, inspire in the classroom and add value through international exposure.”
Turning mirrors into windows
Enda Soostar, Professor, Georgian College, Canada was impressed with the enthusiasm and knowledge base of the students as she taught them a module on the ‘current issues in HR’ from the Canadian perspective. Soostar comments, “The whole purpose of education is to turn mirrors into windows. It’s amazing to see the emphasis Chitkara University lays on inquiry-based learning and inculcating early researcher skills among its students. Thanks to the University’s outlook towards internationalization (with events like Global Week), and quick transition from an inward gazing scientific culture to one increasingly characterized by external engagement, their excellence in education speaks for itself.”
Calling Chitkara University an “open-minded and progressive” educational establishment, Haider Al-Saich, Professor, Applied Computer Education Department, Red River College, Canada, comments “Chitkara has been a pioneer in educating tomorrow’s visionaries, imparting cutting-edge education and leading a broad range of initiatives that validate the transformative power of the student’s career.”
Further, Meagen Gibson, Course Director Media Communications, Full Sail University, Florida, feels the international exposure during the Global Week broadens the vision and enhances the personality of students; it provides them with cross cultural exposure and global perspective. “They also gain competence towards becoming global learners as they witness unprecedented pedagogical styles during the amazing seven days of participation in the event,” she added. Credited and awarded for crafting the stories and editorial elements of Emmy Award winning Reality Competition Program ‘The Voice’, ‘The Apprentice’, among others, Meagen hand-picked a module on ‘Journalism & Film Making Techniques’ for the students.
As for the Chitkara University students, they admit that they are attracted to the presence of foreign faculty, but also bear testimony to the quality of classroom experience. “They ask many questions in class and encourage you to speak,” says one. “They make you feel that you are not at just any other university,” happily chips in another! “It’s a game-changer to my university experience so far and I truly believe nothing can beat this,” quickly adds another Chitkara student. Talking about his teaching style, Andrew Quinn, Lecturer, School of Engineering Built Environment (SEBE), Glasgow Caledonian University, Scotland, said, “I gauge the level of interaction constantly by asking questions and seeking suggestions from the students, and interspersing my lectures with visual aids. I build on concepts from fundamentals with the help of inputs from the students themselves, assigning group-exercises and role-plays, or presentation of a case analysis.”
“The advantages we bring to the table for students are cross-disciplinary studies, and they also have the option of an American experience during the Global Week,” pitched in Associate Lecturer James B. McPhaul. “For students who can’t go to America, we re-create the learning experiences here,” adds the Director of Small Business Development Center at University of Wisconsin-Parkside, Kenosha, WI. In his opinion, Chitkara University students are “very eager to learn and so very coachable.” The ‘Global Week effect’, he describes, in the famous words of John Updike, American novelist and literary critic, “You cannot help but learn more as you take the world into your hands. Take it up reverently, for it is an old piece of clay, with millions of thumbprints on it.”
From sage on the stage, to guide on the side
“The best minds in the education sector from across the world, all under one roof, at the same time! Imagine how amazing would the learning experience be for all of us, including students!” exclaimed Dr. Henning Hummels, Lecturer, Frankfurt School of Finance and Management, Germany. It’s what you learn after you know it all that really counts! The highlight of this visit, he adds, was the “intellectual exchange between faculties from all over the world. Every man I meet is my master in some point, and in that, I learn from him.”
Roro Retno Wulan, Professor, Mass Communication, Telkom University, Indonesia, feels, “Rigid curricula and the absence of adequate skill development due to lack of information on global industry needs, tends to hold us back sometimes. The Global Week infuses fresh viewpoints from different cultures and value system.” In an increasingly globalized world, and with the expansion of higher education provision in emerging economies, education institutions need to develop a strong brand to ensure they remain competitive in attracting students, and international partners.” she adds.
As curtains come to a close on Chitkara University’s tenth Global Week, one formidable outcome that resonates with all has been the need for more of such platforms to promote international mobility of intellectual resources that can truly give an immersive and more holistic experience of world education to the students to make them truly citizens of the globe. It will be only fair to say that Global week at Chitkara University will only become much enriching and bigger, in times to come.
About Chitkara University:
In the year 2002, Chitkara Educational Trust established its Punjab campus 30km from Chandigarh, on the Chandigarh-Patiala National Highway. In the year 2010, Chitkara University was established by the Punjab State Legislature under ‘The Chitkara University Act’. Chitkara University, the best university in Punjab is a government-recognized university with the right to confer degrees as per the Sections 2(f) and 22(1) of the UGC Act, 1956.
Chitkara University has been founded by Dr. Ashok Chitkara and Dr. Madhu Chitkara who have been passionate teachers for more than 40 years now. Chitkara Education brings with it a reputation that has been earned through years of serving the career – needs of the student community. It is a reputation for excellence and innovation among coveted employers for preparing graduates who have the knowledge and skills they need for success in their workplace.
Chitkara University graduates go on to great careers, as they have their hands-on the responsive teaching methodology. Students from around the county are attracted to Chitkara University because of their commitment to teaching excellence, because they conduct research that makes a difference, because of their industry partnerships and because of their tailored courses. This difference has been acknowledged by students, parent, alumni, government, and industry since the inception of the university.
Within a decade, most of Chitkara University academic programs are ranked among the top 50 programs in the country which speaks volumes about their string academic heritage, highly committed faculty, extensive industry collaborations, great international connections, and state of the art campus facilities.