Published: 25th September 2019
Global internships and an incubation centre: Why you need to study at Odisha's SICC
SICC aims to develop students to the best of their abilities and create a sense of commitment in them towards the society and the nation
Established in 2011, SAI International College of Commerce (SICC) bagged the fifth-best college award by EducationWorld, one of India’s most comprehensive education portal, recently. From being a relatively young college to bagging this honour — it must have been quite the journey. But Dr Bijaya Kumar Sahoo, Founder, SAI International Group, reminds us about a very important point, “It’s not about being new or old, it is actually about doing the right things the right way.” So in their mission to do the right things the right way, they continue to enrich and educate students. In a conversation with Dr Sahoo, we find out exactly what they're doing right. Excerpts:
Rocking it on stage: Students performing at one of the events organised by the institute | (Pic: SICC)
1. Interesting activities like Mavericks, the talk show, are conducted. What does it take to draw a modern-day student, who is exposed to social media and has all the information on the tips of their fingers, to your college?
I agree that it’s the era of social media and the internet, all information is available at one's fingertips. But technology is only a tool, it is merely an augmentation to an expert. It can only facilitate learning, certainly not replace teachers. They are those experts who have gained knowledge with experience. They are not just humans delivering a talk but emotional beings who connect with the mind and heart of the students to enrich their knowledge. Here we have the Joint Productive Activities involving both the learners and teachers wherein we create a strong bond, helping the students develop a congenial relationship with the teachers, making the activities interesting for the students. Teachers act as a guide, a mentor and an inspiration for students, a role that cannot be replaced by technology of any kind.
Around the corner: Preparing for Diwali | (Pic: SICC)
2. You recently conducted an awareness session on plastic hazards at the school and have plans to launch a recycling centre. Tell us more about what urged you to start the centre and what else you have been doing to increase environmental awareness among students.
Our actions will decide the future of the youth of today and our willingness to transform the environment will play a significant role in the current global warming scenario. Mitigating climate change and our efforts in this regard through initiatives such as the plastic recycling plant is sure to make a difference in the minds of the youth of today. Along the same lines, we already have a Rain Water Harvesting System and a Waste Water Management System installed in our institutions. Solar panels are installed in the school and hostels to supply solar energy.
We believe in organic farming and the school houses pits to prepare organic manure for the plants to create a cleaner and greener environment for the students and have a pollution-free space. Apart from having a lush green environment, the school houses a greenhouse, where plants ranging from medicinal to ornamental are grown. Apart from these, we have activity-based awareness programmes addressed by environmentalists. I want our future generations to grow and survive in a green and clean environment for which I will do whatever is needed. I don’t want them to grow with limited natural resources and hence, I believe all of us should create awareness to fight against global warming.
In their pursuit of excellence, they train the inquisitive young minds to follow their dreams and keep their flame of innovation ignited to emerge as leaders who will transform the face of Indian Economy
3) Several EdTech start-ups are coming up, raring to make a difference in the Indian education system. What is your opinion of them?
Technology is the biggest enabler in the education sector. The combination of digital media and education requires a number of interdisciplinary skills. For instance, there is a need to blend the experience and analytics with educational pedagogy along with the theory of gaming for the interest of the students. But again, these will facilitate the learning process of the classroom. Technology cannot replace the conventional learning process, without human intervention quality education with life skills is not possible. Start-ups with a blend of real-life knowledge are set to create a revolution in the coming years. As of now, we are in a transition phase where we are loaded with all sorts of Information which will culminate in a concrete set up. The future generation is the youth of today who, with their innovation, will certainly make a quantum leap in the field of technology.
Through their Global Internship Program, they send students to different countries to know about the international work culture and get mentored by global business experts. They work as interns for seven days at consultancies for their on-the-job training
4) What can we expect from SICC next?
SICC will soon scale newer heights and become the best institution for BCom and BBA studies in India. We strive for excellence with our value system of integrity, transparency, ethical standards, social responsibility and global outlook. As mentioned earlier, we aim to develop students to the best of their abilities and create a nation of happy citizens. We envision SICC as the future Start-Up Incubation Centre and emerge as a happy global citizen.
We are committed to groom each student by combining the rigours of academics with a wide range of intellectually stimulating activities
Dr Bijaya Kumar Sahoo, Founder, SAI International Group | (Pic: SICC)
5) What else is special about what you do at SICC?
We send our SICCians for Industrial Tours which are specially designed to bridge the gap between classroom teaching and practical working environment they visit industries, plants, factory sites, manufacturing units and ports to comprehend the processes. Students are also sent for summer internships to numerous corporate, private and public sectors to gain on-the-job experience before starting a career.
They also conduct one of the largest annual business and management festivals which is the perfect genesis of collaborations and co-operation with colleges and schools across the state and also with business and corporate houses
6) A college, playschool, higher secondary school — what is the common mission that guides all your set-ups and what is that singular goal that you want to achieve?
I aspire to create a world of happy children in a happy environment with a focus on quality education and to make Odisha a hub of education.
On campus: SICC in all its glory | (Pic: SICC)