On the occasion of the 38th Foundation Day of Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU), which took place on November 19 in Srinagar, some former students of the National Open University who were invited to the event reflected on their time spent studying at IGNOU.
The primary event was held in New Delhi; however, the event in Srinagar was organized by the Regional Centre and took place at the Government College for Women on MA Road.
Waseem Qadri, a senior executive at JK Bank who is stationed at the corporate office, recently expressed his thanks to IGNOU’s Master of Computer Application (MCA) program for allowing him to complete a professional degree without requiring him to leave Kashmir. To illustrate the significance of IGNOU’s work in the region, Qadri reflected on the trip he took 25 years ago.
He said that after earning his bachelor’s degree, he intended to go for a professional course at the PG level, but traveling out of Kashmir was not viable owing to numerous reasons, and he recalled that IGNOU began providing MCA courses around that time.
“This was the very first time that IGNOU has ever provided admission to MCA in the Valley. At that point in time, KU did not offer the MCA major. IGNOU allowed me to pursue my desire to do a professional degree without requiring me to move away from the Valley; therefore, I am quite grateful to them for that.
Barieq Manzoor, who won a gold medal in 2020 and came in first place nationwide in BBA, lauded IGNOU for its ability to not only educate students but also address issues that they would face in their everyday lives. She gave IGNOU credit for allowing her to provide for her family as she worked toward getting her degree.
“I am grateful to IGNOU since it allowed me to continue working to support my family while I earned my BBA. IGNOU is entirely to thank for my current employment and income; because of them, I was able to get hired. She said that IGNOU is a better educational platform for people, but it is up to individuals to choose how to utilize it. According to what she stated, “IGNOU provides us with everything, and we ought to be smart enough to take advantage of the facilities they offer.”
IGNOU was acknowledged by Syed Muarif Andrabi, currently serving as Deputy Director at the State Motor Garages Department, for molding his career after he made the shift from an engineering background to an administrative post. He underscored the fact that IGNOU is an invaluable resource for people of both rich and impoverished backgrounds.
“I came from a background in engineering but was assigned to a role in administration. In order to improve my management abilities, I decided to enroll in a master’s program in public administration offered by IGNOU. According to him, “the decision really proved fruitful for me, and I can say that IGNOU shaped my professional life.”
According to Andrabi, IGNOU is a university that “gives wings to fly” and is beneficial to our nation. During his lecture, the Regional Director of IGNOU Srinagar, Dr. Shahnawaz Dar, underlined the importance that IGNOU plays in democratizing higher education, offering access to excellent education regardless of demography, and encouraging remote education.
IGNOU began its operations on November 19, 1985, and it has since been accredited by NAAC at the highest possible level, A++.
Since it first opened its doors in February 1999, the Srinagar Regional Centre has amassed an impressive roster of 46 learner support centers and more than 300 academic counselors throughout the Kashmir and Ladakh regions. Over 50,000 students are now enrolled, and students may choose from over 300 different programs ranging from certificates to postgraduate degrees.
“Recognized for its contribution, the Higher Education department of the Government of J&K involves IGNOU Srinagar in planning, policy-making, and increasing the gross enrollment in higher education,” stated Dr. Shahnawaz Dar.
He said that the regional center in Srinagar is actively involved in national programs, including the e-VidyaBharti initiative, SAATHE Mitra, and contributing to the Azadi ka Amrit Mahautsav and Swachhta Campaign.
According to him, the IGNOU Regional Centre Srinagar was established in February 1999. It began its operations in one room of the Department of Commerce at the University of Kashmir and now has four study centers, 14 programs, and an enrollment of around 1,000 students.
He said that the e-VidyaBharti Project, which is run by the Government of India’s Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), provides tele-education services to users via internet-based web portals. IGNOU has been selected as one of the HEIs that will participate in the e-VBAB project as part of this effort.
“A total of 2618 students have enrolled in 43 different programs, spanning a wide range of academic levels from certificate to postgraduate degree. According to him, the students coming from 19 different African nations as part of this distinguished initiative have been assigned to RC Srinagar to participate in the CFN and DECE programs.
He said that during the course of the last 24 years, IGNOU Srinagar has continued to play a significant role in the human resource development of Kashmir and Ladakh.
In addition, Principal GCW MA Road Srinagar Prof. Ruhi Jan Kant and Assistant Regional Director IGNOU Srinagar Center Dr. Mudasir, along with other IGNOU staff members and coordinators, were present at the ceremony.