Dr. Dheeraj Ahirwar, Principal, School of Pharmacy, Chouksey Engineering College

The essence of education lies not only in theoretical knowledge from textbooks.It is about conditioning the minds to think innovatively.COVID-19 has compelled educators worldwide to reinvent the role of education in controlling a pandemic of this magnitude which has devastated the entire world.In the larger context of education, pharmacy education provides the most vital skill sets, which has a tremendous potential to serve the vulnerable society suffering from the atrocities of the COVID19. It is high time to revisit the current structure of pharmacy education in context to pandemic preparedness and ponder on the role of the pharmacy institutes to build a fleet of professionals towards serving the millions fighting with the deadly pandemic.

School of Pharmacy, Chouksey Engineering College (SOP, CEC), takes pride in creating an atmosphere wherein both students and faculty can pursue boundless knowledge; a single roof where theory and practice go hand in hand and lead to a better understanding of oneself and the world. Education at SOP, CEC prepares its students to think boldly and act confidently in any industry environment. Focusing goes beyond education, the institution aims to transform its students into leaders. Their outstanding educational program has well-defined objectives and provides supportive educational materials, content, and methods that are student-appropriate. “A good educational program focuses on imparting knowledge to its students. We are strongly committed and fulfilling the demand of higher education program”, says Dr. Dheeraj Ahirwar, Principal, SOP, CEC.

With an educational program that focuses on the personality development of students, SOP CEC promotes an advanced version of learning which aids students to be self-motivated, goal-oriented, creative, and skilled at resource management. Intending to become the center of excellence in education and research, SOP, CEC has been working on a mission to establish itself as an institute of global standards that can develop professionals with high moral and professional commitment to meet the healthcare needs of the society. The institute envisions to impart global quality education to future pharmacy professionals by empowering them with knowledge and skills and facilitating their professional, intellectual and moral development to meet the challenges of the competitive world. Developing trained and skilled professionals through quality education and establish MoU through Academic-Industry interactions and consultancy works, Er. Ashish Jaiswal, MD, Chouskey Group of Colleges, pinpoints, “We are now working on to achieve the highest standards of intellectual, educational and research productivity through continuous improvement of the infrastructure and industrial relationships”.

Bringing Research at the Forefront

To bridge research gaps in management theory and application, SOP, CEC has incorporated technology and a sound academic foundation to buttress its research programs. Although the future of post-pandemic education is still unclear, SOP, CEC is ready to take up the challenge, backed by its wonderful team and their ever-ready spirit. “Our new program that was started in June 2021, i.e., the full-time M. Pharm in Pharmacology and Pharmaceutical Chemistry, is a professional Master’s degree designed to help students transform their careers by developing their professional understanding, expertise, and industrial skills”, says Dr. Dheeraj.

With vast knowledge in the field of pharmacy, along withgood teachings skills, SOP,CEC has a faculty strength of more than 35, half of whom have Pha.D with an experience of more than 12 years. The faculties have extensive experience in the industry, research aswell as teaching. Their strength is a reflection of their skills, innovation, and drive.  Along with good infrastructure, the classes at the institute were not disturbed for even asingle day, even during the pandemic lockdown. “The way they taught in the online mode of teaching iscommendable, from supplying notes to teaching, everything was planned and regulated well. Thecourse is continued to stay relevant along withan accurate number of credits and teaching hours. Overall, students were provided with very good knowledge”, shares Er. Ashish.

Learning and Teaching New Innovations – Faculty at SOP

Boasting of a highly qualified and extremely talented group of faculties who have been guiding its student community with their wide range of knowledge and experience, SOP, CEC is focusing on industry training and real-world, hands-on experience, which they believe is essential in helping learners‟ transition to the actual workplace. “Each year, all faculty members regularly undergo a 15-30 days training in their Domain Area through Faculty Development Program (FDP) organized by the University and in Relevant Industry, International Seminar /Conferences / Workshops. Our faculty members are encouraged for Research Project /Research Publication etc., as per guidelines of UGC,” adds Dr. Dheeraj.

At SOP, CEC, faculty members, soon after completion of project work, insist students publish their research work as well as their research work in reputed scientific journals respectively. Since 2004, a total of 300 publications were published, including 100 research papers and review articlespublished in international journals likeInternational Journal ofPharmaceutical Science and Drug Research, International Journal of Pharmaceutical andInnovations, International Journal ofPhytomedicine, Asian Journal of Research in Chemistry,Current Psychopharmacology, etc. “In the research area of pharmaceutics discipline, the majority workwas done in Formulation, Development and Evaluation of herbal drugs, Novel Drug Delivery System with the goalof bioavailability enhancement and stability achievement like Nanoparticles, Liposomes,Phytosomes, Microemulsion based Hydrogel, Thermo Reversible Mucoadhesive Gel, Herbaltechnology, Self Micro-Emulsifying Drug Delivery Systems, Solid Dispersions, Transdermal Patch.Few publications include the research work related to taste masking of the bitter and unpalatable drugfor oral use and solubility enhancement by carriers like Cyclodextrine,” explains Er. Ashish.

Along with the best education and knowledge, SOP, CEC tries its best to bloom the overall personality of the students. Their Training & Placement Cell puts their maximum efforts for the placements in leading companies in the pharmaceutical industries. With a consistent placement track record in the past 16 years, the alumni of Chouksey Group of Colleges have consistently produced outstanding pharmacists, engineers and managers who have excelled in their careers and occupied a responsible position in some of the best-known enterprises in India and across the globe. Chouksey Group of Colleges is the only college in the Chhattisgarh region to arrange campus placements where 112 companies visited in 2020-21, in which 80% of their students were recruited in the campus drive. “We wish to makea positive difference in our society through education and empower students from various socio-economic strata to level the playing field. Building world-class research capabilities on par with the finest in the world and broaden student’s horizons beyond classroom education, we aspire to build a holistic educational institute of repute chasing excellence with great hard work successfully and help talented pharmacy students emerge as winners”, concludes Dr. Dheeraj.

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