India’s new cadre of entrepreneur and future leaders are set to make a significant impact on society, especially improving the quality of life for the Himalayan region. The Naropa Fellowship programme celebrated its first convocation ceremony for their inaugural cohort at Hemis Monastery, largest Drukpa lineage monastery located at an altitude of 12000 feet in Ladakh. A total of 52 students received their postgraduate certificate in Entrepreneurship and Leadership programme.
The Fellows were inspired by the presence of Shri Jamyang Tsering Namgyal, MP of the newly created Union Territory of Ladakh, who graced the ceremony as the Guest of Honour. Dr. Rudrangshu Mukherjee, Chancellor Ashoka University, was also the Guest of Honour and the commencement speaker at the Convocation Ceremony.
The first cohort of 52 Fellows, underwent through a rigorous one-year, fully residential, post-graduate, academic programme where they were taught courses centred around entrepreneurship, society and culture, communication skills and personal development. The curriculum included a unique practical learning module called live-action project which gave the fellows an opportunity to transform their ideas into live projects. The projects aimed to create sustainable solutions for the society and were supported by world-class faculty which included industry experts, academicians and practitioners, who guided and instructed the Fellows in their entrepreneurial ventures.
During the course, an Impact Summit was organised to analyse the impact of live-action projects and provide access to post-fellowship incubation/ acceleration opportunities, including access to a network of angel investors and mentorship support. Representatives of Paytm, LinkedIn, School of Social Entrepreneurs India etc. were part of the Summit. Additionally, two projects have also been selected for Start-up Exploration Programme organized by Catalyst, IIT Mandi and have received financial support of up to Rs 1.5 Lakh in addition to mentoring, networking and training.
Speaking on the occasion Dr Pramath Raj Sinha, Co-founder of Naropa Fellowship said “It was a great experience interacting with young minds at Naropa Fellowship. Seeing the energy of the Fellows, it is evident that they will create sustainable solutions for society and contribute to their communities. It is heartening to see that the New Education Policy 2019 which envisages a deeper focus on liberal arts and culture supports our vision for Naropa Fellowship and we hope to encourage the youth in more and more numbers to be a part of this Fellowship going forward.”
Speaking on the occasion His Eminence Drukpa Thuksey Rinpoche, Co-founder of Naropa Fellowship said “It’s an honour to present leaders of tomorrow who will create a meaningful impact in the Himalayan region. With Ladakh being declared as a Union Territory, our vision is now aligned in removing major barriers in the prevailing education system in the region and create opportunities for youth to study and become successful entrepreneurs.”
Shri Jamyang Tsering Namgyal, MP of Ladakh, Guest of Honour said, “With Ladakh being declared a Union Territory, there is now a greater need than ever before for entrepreneurial ventures that provide local youth with new opportunities, generate employment in the region and help shape a brighter future for people of Ladakh. Naropa Fellows have already made a great start by undertaking ventures with the potential to make a positive impact on the Himalayan region. I wish them the very best in all their future endeavours.”