Jain (Deemed-to-be University) was privileged to welcome a delegation from the Durban University of Technology (DUT), South Africa, for an interaction on Community Engagement in Higher Education in South Africa and India on Monday, 8 February 2016. The South African delegation consisted of Professor R. Bhagwan, Professor D. Lortan, Dr. S Maistry and Ms. L Naidu all of whom are actively involved in research linked to Community Engagement and Universities in their country. Dr. N Sundararajan, Vice Chancellor of Jain University welcomed the delegation and outlined the efforts and priorities of Jain (Deemed-to-be University). Dr. Sandeep Shastri, Pro Vice Chancellor of Jain (Deemed-to-be University) initiated the discussion on the Community Engagement Perspectives and Initiatives of Jain University in particular and Universities in India, in general. Dr. Lortan of DUT outlined the history, efforts, philosophy and challenges of Community Engagement by South African educational institutions. The discussions focused on the challenges and opportunities in both South Africa and India for Universities to take forward their Community Engagement agenda. From Jain University, Dr. Rajani Jairam, Dean of Students Welfare, Dr. Mythili Rao, Dean of Languages, Dr. B T Venkatesh, Adviser, Examinations, Dr. Shailaja Shastri Professor and Head, Department of Psychology, Dr. Asha Rajiv, Director, IQAC, Ms. Pinky Chandran, Coordinator Radio Active, Dr. Reetika Syal, Assistant Professor, CERSSE and Ms. Ramya from Radio Active participated in the discussion.
Later, Dr. Bhagwan and Ms. L Naidu had a detailed discussion with Dr. Shailaja Shastri and two doctoral students and Assistant Professors in the University, Ms. Ashwini and Ms. Madhavi on a research project on Hinduism and Spirituality. Concurrently, Dr. Lortan and Dr. Maistry had a detailed discussion with Dr. Mythili Rao on the philosophical foundations of the Jain (Deemed-to-be University).
The day long deliberations will pave the way for a long term collaboration between Durban University of Technology and Jain University.