• 11 May 2005
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"Continuous Industry-Academia Interaction Is The Need of The Hour" -Dr Smita S Singhania

The University of Pune start ed an innovative and novel program, MBA-Bio technology and post 10+2, five years integrated MSc/MTech. biotechnology, BE/BTech., ME biotechnology programs. The list of institutes, universities, colleges offering variety of different courses under the discipline of biotechnology was published in the students special of BioSpectrum December 2004 issue.

One of the pioneer universities in the field of biotechnology and to be regarded as the 'Oxford of the East' by scholars from across the globe is the University of Pune. With the efforts of vice chancellor Prof Ashok Kolaskar and his team of stalwarts from academia and industry, the University of Pune has received five star rating from the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC).

The University Grants Commission (UGC) also recognized the University of Pune as a University of Potential Excellence in cutting edge areas of biotechnology and bioinformatics. The university's major teaching and research programs have secured the support of several agencies of national repute such as the DST, DBT, CSIR, DAE, and the DRDO.

It offers various teaching programs in biotechnology - undergraduate programs like BSc (Vidya Pratisthan, Baramati's efforts are commendable) and BE/BTech. in various affiliated colleges, MSc biotechnology (entrance exam by JNU) and integrated MSc/ MTech. biotechnology (entrance examination conducted by the Institute of Bioinformatics & Biotechnology/ MKCL) in the campus, PhD biotechnology in postgraduate teaching department and various affiliated national level research institutes and industry R&D centers (entrance examination by the University of Pune), advanced diploma in bioinformatics, MSc.-bioinformatics (entrance exam conducted by Bioinformatics Center, UOP).

The MBA-Biotechnology program (started from 2002, with intake of 60 students) is conducted by the Department of Management Sciences (PUMBA), University of Pune. The entrance examination pattern is similar to any MBA entrance examination - written test conducted by Association of Indian Management Schools (AIMS) and Test for Management Admissions (ATMA) and group discussion and personal interview conducted by PUMBA. For further details, candidates can visit the website http://www.unipune.ernet.in.

The MBA-Biotechnology Program of the University of Pune gives exposure to subjects like regulatory matters, IPR and bio-enterprise management, BT Plant Management, Biosafety issues, GMP, GLP, Validation, QA/ QC, emerging trends in biotechnology, and short term training in biotechnology units.

The popularity of these programs run by the University of Pune in academia, industry and students is mainly because of the updated course curriculum by academia and industry which meets the expectations marked by stalwarts of biotechnology in various issues of BioSpectrum and also mentioned in the National Biotechnology Development Strategy. Even regular interaction between faculty and students help the later to updating themselves about the current and emerging issues in biotechnology. Attending national and international seminars, conferences, biotechnology unit visits and interactions with global stalwarts of industry and academia also help them to know the needs of the industry.

The success of all these efforts is evident in biotechnology units as companies like the Serum Institute of India, Biocon Ltd, Reliance life Sciences, Nicholas Piramal, Mahyco, Avesthagen, Quintiles, Wockhardt, Multiplex, Millipore, SRL Ranbaxy, Sanmar, Sartorius, SPAN Diagnostics, Praj Industries, Torrent Pharma, GSK, Vital Biological, Bio-Rad, Biotech India, Hysel India, Sigma Aldrich, Eli Lilly, Carl Zeiss, Frost & Sullivan, Life Technologies, SPIC-Mitocon, Transearch, Olympus India Ltd, DSS, Novartis India, Syngenta, Seminis Vegetable Seeds, to name a few offer an opportunity for students to work with them. This is the ultimate goal of each and every student who takes up biotechnology as a career option.

Continuous interaction between academia and industry is the need of the hour as it helps both in fulfilling the needs of the industry and at the same time realizing the dreams of the student community.

Dr Smita S Singhania, faculty & course co-ordinator, MBA-BT, Department of Management Sciences, University of Pune.

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