NEW DELHI: Graduate Management Admission Council, an international organisation of business schools and the administrator of GMAT exam, has joined hands with nine leading B-schools in the country to market India as an ideal destination to do MBA.
The council is targeting 27 countries including Germany, France and several countries in Asia and Africa, GMAC president Sangeet Chowfla said. We took it upon ourselves to start working with Indian business schools to market India as a study destination,” he told ET.
Its partners include three Indian Institutes of Management — Ahmedabad, Bangalore and Indore — besides Indian School of Business (ISB), SP Jain Institute of Management & Research (SPJIMR), Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies (NMIMS), Great Lakes Institute of Management (GLIM), IMT Ghaziabad and Xavier University Bhubaneswar (XUB).
The initiative is in line with the ministry of human resource development’s directive to rebuild India’s attractiveness as a study destination for higher education in Africa, Middle East, and South and East Asia.
Chowfla said India is not considered as a study destination on the same lines as western countries or even Singapore, Hong Kong, and increasingly Shanghai are. Now, GMAC is keen to change that.
The council has a ‘Study in India’ link on its official Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) exam website mba.com, which international students looking to pursue business management courses frequent. It provides students with information about the country and specific B-schools. The consortium of schools talk about India in a collective voice.
This is a first-of-its-kind programme that Reston, Virginia-based GMAC has implemented in the world. The council owns and administrates GMAT, a standardised test specifically designed for graduate business and management programmes. It has hundreds of member schools from several countries including Australia, the UK, China, France and India.
Chowfla said that post-Brexit and the US elections, students from all over the world have been increasingly saying they need to look at alternatives to the UK and US to do their MBA.
“Quality business schools have developed across the world now,” he said. “If you look at the global rankings from 20 years ago, it was a mix of US and UK schools. Today, the list includes schools from all over the world.”
According to Chowfla, one of the main reasons for the council to market India as a destination for business education is the growing relevance of India to other countries and multinational companies.
India’s industrial structure is relevant to many countries in the emerging world as there are several business courses available in the country, he said. “Yes, potential students can go to the US and learn things like derivative finance. But those aren’t even available in their own country. We (India) are much more relevant from that point of view,” Chowfla said.
He said ‘Study in India’ will cover topics and issues such as details of Indian visas, security and food in the country. Additionally, the nine business schools will provide stories about themselves to help students understand that school through the eyes of students who are already in that school.
They have also interviewed and created video blogs of foreign and domestic students talking about their educational and social experiences.
Chowfla said the initiative will not just benefit international students aspiring to study here, but also domestic MBA students. “If you think about business education to other education etc., you learn more from each other than you learn from professors,” he said. “Getting the right mix of students including foreign students is good. It’s not just about getting foreign students into India as a way to earn additional revenues, but the quality of education for Indian students becomes dramatically better when they study with foreign students.”
VK Menon, chief marketing and development officer at IIM Bangalore, said the ‘Study in India’ initiative “will further increase the diversity of our students, who can look forward to developing as global business leaders”.
Kamal Jain, dean, academics, at IIM Indore, said the initiative will be an authentic source of information. “This is an opportunity for international students to be a part of contextually relevant business schools that develops socially conscious managers, leaders and entrepreneurs,” he said in a statement.
Munish Sapra, assistant dean at Indian School of Business, said, “We are confident that it will contribute to the existing diverse international classroom and strengthen India’s position on the global management education space. International students coming through this initiative will get a chance to interact with top-notch faculty.”