The younger cousins of the already established IITs and IIMs are reaching out to the Indian diaspora in different corners of the world to tap the potential of a possible global brand presence.
Unlike the older selves of the prestigious institutions, the newer ones are free to experiment being free of the historical baggage.
“We don’t have an alumni base as strong as the older Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) but you cannot wait for 40 years to reap that benefit, so you must innovate and reach out to new constituents,” stated Sarit K. Das, Director of IIT Ropar in Punjab. Commenting on the value of tapping the Indian diaspora he stated, “Indian diaspora can be (almost practically) your alumni base. What alumni do for older institutions, diaspora can do it for you.”
Reaching out to the non-resident Indians will not only increase the global presence of these newer IITs and IIMs but also help attract potential recruiters thereby improving the placement records and keeping them at par with the standards.
It is reported that the Director and his colleagues have already visited countries like the UK, Canada, US, Singapore and Australia in the recent months to reach out to the large Indian diaspora.
Das further states, “We get three benefits. One, Indian diaspora like your alumni base can help you connect with good candidates to recruit as faculties; two, they can help find good university collaborations and three, they can contribute to specific needs of the institutions.”
Sudhir Jain, Director of IIT Gandhinagar says, “New institutions can think different and act different. If some of us are looking at NRIs or the larger diaspora, then it’s a very conscious decision. In the last few years, we have received endowments worth INR 300 million and a sizable portion of them are from the diaspora community. As we engage with them more, we believe more will follow.”
The institutions are looking forward to tapping unconventional sources the likes of government funds or sponsored projects to sustain themselves.