I am employed in a private company. I want to pursue a good programme in International Trade. I am given to understand that the IIFT offers part-time MBA programmes. Please provide information about the eligibility criteria.

via email, Bangalore

The Indian Institute of Foreign Trade (IIFT) (www.iift.edu) offers a nine-trimester, three-year MBA programme in International Business, which one can attend on Saturdays (3 p.m. to 7.30 p.m.) and Sundays (9 a.m. to 6 p.m.). The classes are conducted on the IIFT campus in New Delhi. The programme has worked wonderfully well with working executives. It has all the inputs of the regular two-year MBA flagship programme of IIFT. The eligibility: Bachelor’s degree from any recognised university; a total of three years of managerial work experience following graduation; company sponsorship or a no objection certificate from the employer.

To qualify, one needs to go through Group Discussion, Essay Writing and Interview to be held on the IIFT campus in New Delhi. However, since you are in Bangalore, you may not be able to pursue the programme, unless you are having work-related opportunities to move to New Delhi.

IIFT also offers a three-trimester, 12-month Executive Post- Graduate Diploma in International Business (EPGDIB) via the Hughes Net interactive learning platform (www.hugheseducation.com). There will also be campus classroom sessions at IIFT for four to six days for each of the trimesters. The platform classes will be located across the country, which will ensure that the student need not go out of the city, and can continue working.

To be eligible for the programme, one needs to be a graduate with a minimum of five years’ experience. Candidates are selected on the basis of qualifications and experience. For more details you should contact the Section Officer, ICCD, IIFT, IIFT Bhawan, B21, Qutab Institutional Area, New Delhi-110016. Ph: 011-26966360, 26966563. Extn: 623. Email: iccdadmission@iift.ac.in

I have completed B.E. Chemical Engineering and have started working for an organisation related to my field of study. I have also completed MBA in the off-campus mode. However, I have not been able to go up the hierarchy in the organisation. Should I pursue any course or should I do something else that will help me to get to a managerial function?

via email, Bangalore

In the corporate world, there are opportunities based on the aspect of one being a specialist and focusing on the technical functions. There are others who don a managerial role, managing teams or contributing to a specific function from a strategic aspect. From you question and inputs provided, it is clear that you have aspired to move into a managerial function, keeping in perspective the technical domain and specialisation. One has to realise that organisations engage associates to ensure that the key result areas (KRAs) are achieved. Being specialised will ensure that the associate’s KRAs and the organisational objectives are interlinked. This will ensure qualitative contribution and professional growth. If the organisation is a flat one (limited number of hierarchies and levels) and that too role-based, it will create a situation where the associate continues with the job assigned for a long period and contributes technically. There are times when the technical specialisation brings about the aspect of management and catapults one to a managerial assignment, wherein one can lead a team. Then, considering the size and functioning in the organisation, promotions are factored. In your case, we visualise a scenario of high level of specialisation and if the organisation is role-based with a flat hierarchy, the opportunities of promotion will decline.

Pursuing a course will depend on the requirements of your work and the KRA assigned. If the job involves research and development and a research degree in essential, then pursuing a MS through research or even a Ph.D. will help you to move up the ladder (may not be from a designation perspective but surely from an opportunities’ nuance).

This apart, check on the aspect of certifications that are available in the academic arena that would help create opportunities for a practitioner like you. One has to note to ensure that the certifications are relevant and ones that will support the requirements of projects and the delivery mechanisms of the organisation.

My son, who is presently in 9th standard, is in a fix whether to consider Medicine and Dentistry for further studies. We are keen that he takes up one of the programmes. Please advise us.

via email, Bangalore

Academic planning helps one to select courses of choice and pursue them to ensure success. It is good that you have earmarked the areas of study for the future. You still have three to four years to plan and strategise. Take the final opinion from your son, considering that he will be the one who will face the programmes. Since there is a definite time frame to start the programme, you should encourage the prospective learner to pursue the programme that he selects at that point in time.

Besides the qualifications of Intermediate/PUC in the subjects of Science one would need to attend tutorials to do well in the common entrance tests. Another aspect to consider is that the student will have to practice the entrance tests’ format for better momentum and gaining confidence.

I am a B.Com graduate. I have been working for the past two years in a call centre. I am keen to take up an event management and administration course on a regular basis. Hence, please suggest a programme that would suit my interests.

via email, Pune

The National Institute of Event Management (NIEM) (www.niemindia.com) conducts a 11-month programme titled Post-Graduate Diploma in Advertising, Media and Events (PGDAME). The two-semester programme has specialisations in the second semester which will help the student to benefit and get opportunities in the field of event management. You should contact the NIEM at 4, Kamal Prabha Apartment, FC Road, Pune-411016. Ph: 020-25679034. Email: niem.events@gmail.com

Email: Shaheed_k@yahoo.com