The availability of Quality Education is a key goal as emerging workforces are looking to equip themselves to meet the increasing demands of a 21st-century economy. This mammoth-sized task requires a collaboration of the industry and institutions that promote a smooth internal as well as external student workplace readiness. Internal readiness includes equipping the students with hands-on experience, knowledge, attitude, language skills and other competencies that can be leveraged to fulfill day-to-day job tasks. While external readiness includes grooming and teaching of etiquettes to suit the workplace requirements. However, most institutions peppered across India are still equipped with conventional tools and continue to swear by the rote learning technique as opposed to encouraging meaningful learning and prioritizing skill development.
Addressing this difficult conundrum while ensuring continual quality improvement across the entire learning process is Malla Reddy University, the first greenfield university in the state of Telangana. The university offers a comprehensive suite of courses such as B.Tech/B.Tech (Hons), B.Sc. (Hons) Agriculture, B.Sc. Allied Health Sciences, BPT/MPT, B.Sc. Digital forensics, BBA/ BBA (Hons)/ MBA, B.Com/B.Com (Hons), M.Tech/M.Sc. and PhD Programs. Additionally, the university offers some of the latest programs such as machine learning, data sciences, artificial intelligence, cyber security, and so on. The institute boasts of its flexibility to seamlessly incorporate close to real-time updates occurring across the various fields of advancing technologies. This helps in maintaining meaningful and systematic student engagement that translates to better outcomes. “Our curriculum is the most updated one with industry experts on our board of studies. Our assessment is learning-oriented and our main focus is to instill confidence and gain insights from what they have learned as part of the curriculum subjects,” reveals Dr. Vustikayala Sivakumar Reddy, Vice-Chancellor, Malla Reddy University. The curriculum has been designed to encourage out-of-the-box thinking in tandem with the need to conduct critical analysis on a particular subject to make better-informed decisions. This approach has students not just prepare themselves to meet the examination requirements but also nurture the ability to apply the same knowledge and skill gained across different aspects of life.
Bridging the Gap Between Industries and Institutions
Despite being a recent market entrant, Malla Reddy University with its team of expert faculty members has been consistently working in the industry and institute collaboration space. One of the university’s recent collaborations is with Cambridge English Assessment and Press where the students were equipped with B2 Empower-Cambridge learning management system to promote after school/college learning. Additionally, the collaboration with Sterling University can be utilized for higher education and participating in the semester abroad programs. “Our tie-up with Cambridge English Assessment and Press enriches our learner experiences in terms of second language learning. This boosts after class learning or beyond the class learning over CLMS,” explains Dr. Vustikayala.
Malla Reddy University, a flagship institute of the Malla Reddy Group, was brought to life with the vision to create a breakthrough in the field of higher education that is on par with the international standards of teaching and research. The research is fostered across the respective departments through collaborations with the funding agencies and institutions across the country and globe. For instance, the School of Agriculture has received funding to conduct a seminar on the use of technology in agriculture. All these collaborations enable students to flourish in the new range of career choices made by them. “Innovative International collaborations that enrich our curriculum coupled with updated state-of-art technology, enabling student learning environment that foster employability and future-readiness makes this University noble and unique,” opines Dr. Vustikayala.
He goes on to tell us that the university is perfectly positioned to hone a myriad of talents within the students through their hands-on experience methodology, case studies, task repetition, and familiarizing the task and its schema. Tech fests and participation in national and international level activities boost the creative learning and innovation of the students. Apart from this, teachers act as catalysts that motivate and bring out the creative quotient from their students. “Malla Reddy University has faculty whose duty is to scaffold the students with a positive learning culture and create an environment with self-directed learning with enabling technologies that permit effective and enriching student-teacher interaction which promotes learning and skill acquisition. This is how the university managed the component of teaching and learning during the pandemic,” says Dr. Vustikayala.
The Post-Covid Era Phase
While universities grapple to continue to stay relevant during these trying times, Malla Reddy University is already gearing itself up for the changes in the post covid era. The university plans on extending its psycho-social support to the learners. This will help create better learning spaces and motivate them to achieve their long-term and short-term goals through motivation and abled guidance. In addition to this, it will ensure that the students will be furnished with the required academic soft skills, untapped latent learning materials, and academic support to battle any unforeseen situations that may distract student learning. “The university offers a student-friendly environment to the learners and learning-oriented spaces are created to ensure that students understand that their learning and progress matter to their teachers,” elucidates Dr. Vustikayala.
Making significant contributions to the education domain, yet another promising initiative taken up by Malla Reddy University is its merit-based scholarships that they extend to a broad spectrum of students. Students hailing from diverse learning backgrounds ranging from rural to metro can avail the Rupees Five Crore scholarships that the institution has put in place. This effort is made to ensure that the University is accessible and inclusive to all, irrespective of any language, culture, region, or race.
Gaining Due Recognition
Malla Reddy University is a successful and reputed name in the field of higher education for five decades. It holds one of the highest annual placements records. Dr. Vustikayala adds, “Malla Reddy promotes creative entrepreneurship in collaboration with the National nodal agencies such as Skill India and so on. Apart from this, students participate in incubation camps that are held from time to time at NITs and IITs. Talks with successful student entrepreneurs and other eminent entrepreneurs whose startups have successfully evolved are organized.”
Having touched the lives of a vast number of students and bringing about a radical change in the education domain, Malla Reddy University envisions expanding its horizons. The university has already mapped out its future plans and is enthralled by the progress it aims to make. As the university is progressing to the third year with its first batch of students, the main focus is industry readiness, internships overseas education, and placements. Dr. Vustikayala ends on a positive note, “Currently, the university is focusing on strengthening its pedagogy to meet the current needs of the students to match the industry standards.”
About Dr. Vustikayala Sivakumar Reddy, Vice-Chancellor, Malla Reddy University
Dr. Vustikayala Sivakumar Reddy possesses over two decades of experience at various levels of Academic and Administrative Positions. Holding 21 years of industry-rich expertise, he began his career as an Academic Associate, JNT College of Engineering, Hyderabad. He then progressed to work as an Assistant Professor and Professor at the Sreenidhi Institute of Science and Technology, Hyderabad. He dedicated over a decade of his life to his students as a Principal & Professor in Malla Reddy College of Engineering and Technology before stepping into the post of Vice-Chancellor at Malla Reddy University.
He holds a bouquet of degrees to his name such as B.Tech, M.Tech, Ph.D (IIT-KGP), MIEEE, FIETE, MISTE, and MCSI. Computer Networks and Communications, Video Processing, Multimedia System Design, Operating Systems, TCP/IP Networks & Protocols, System Architecture and Advanced Microprocessors are some of his research interests.