Message from the Vice Chancellor
Dr. S C Sharma
We are poised at a momentous occasion today: higher education in India is growing by leaps and bounds. The old questions of access and equity have only become all the more acute. Newer questions of competitiveness and global benchmarking of quality have emerged. The challenge that we face is this: are Indian institutions of higher learning ready to stand up to the occasion, an occasion that demands in equal measure creativity, a deep commitment to social welfare and human values?
I can proudly vouch that at Tumkur University, we have taken the challenge head on. We are a new university, a rural university. But that has not deterred us from taking bold and innovative steps. Twenty nine research centres in such short span of time, about 60 major research projects (and counting), dedicated facilities for language laboratories, nanotechnology labs, memoranda of understanding with some of the most significant research institutes and industry partners in the country, a high quotient of public trust resulting in private philanthropy for building massive infrastructure and intellectual resources in the university; it is like the sense one gets of the key turning in the lock: we feel something about all this is right. And good.
We know we have a long way to go before we can say that we have made a lasting impact on the educational scene in India. But the groundwork for that is being laid in Tumkur by the day. Any visitor to the University will not miss the young and dedicated faculty members and students, most of whom would probably be first-generation university goers, participating in the sheer excitement of institution building in these rather unusual circumstances. I say unusual because, until very recently, universities were an attribute of metropolitan India. As an academic institution we feel we are intellectually and morally beholden to the world we inhabit. So when we got down to the task of building this institution, we had to ask ourselves a very different set of questions: how now to make Tumkur a prestigious centre for knowledge production and dissemination? How to establish a culture of research and inculcate a genuine spirit of inquiry among the youth in this region which suffers from disadvantages of several kinds: financial, academic, and even political?
The great ideal of the institution of the University, where the pursuit of knowledge is unencumbered is something that needs reiteration every once in a while. Autonomy, fairness, intellectual curiosity and humanism are the hallmarks of any great university anywhere in the world. At Tumkur, we have made a beginning towards realising this ideal. Come, visit us and you will see the lustrous power of an idea which is captured succinctly in our motto: “Sevastu Me Jnanavijnanadhara”.