Teachers need to be praised for quickly adapting to new ways of teaching and ensuring that pandemic–induced lockdowns did not hamper the education of students, Shekar C. Mande, Secretary, DSIR and Director General, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), New Delhi, has said. “All of us should feel proud that we have been able to overcome the hurdles posed by the pandemic,” he added.
Delivering his address at the 101st convocation of the University of Mysore here on Tusday, Dr. Mande said educational institutions took teaching and learning to students’ homes because of COVID-19. However, the contributions of teachers and the cooperation of students during the pandemic have almost gone unnoticed even though the education sector was also affected like other sectors. Educational institutions of all kinds had to be shut down and they continue to be largely closed even today.
Complementing the University of Mysore for introducing online teaching even before the pandemic, Dr. Mande said the pandemic has only catalysed the broader adoption of online programmes globally. The situation highlighted the critical role played by teachers irrespective of their engagement - being in kindergarten or in an institution of higher learning.
The pandemic has been an exceedingly challenging time for everyone as doctors, scientists and researchers worked tirelessly on developing solutions and interventions related to COVID-19 mitigation. They rightly deserve the applause and our deepest gratitude.
The DSIR Secretary observed that the pandemic showed the humane side of several segments of the global citizenry and there is a need for many such efforts in the coming times even as the harm caused to the environment, mainly due to our disregard, carelessness, and ignorance, was being witnessed by everyone.
Observing that students of today are at ease with the use of technology, he said it is laudable that the National Education Policy-2020 advocates more use of technology in education, including creation of virtual labs.
Earlier, Governor and Chancellor Thawar Chand Gehlot, who presided over the convocation, conferred the honorary doctorate on eminent scientist and honorary professor in Biochemistry at IISc Bengaluru, Govindarajan Padmanabhan, and the Chairman of Vision Group of Start-ups, Government of Karnataka, Prashanth Prakash.
The Governor later presented gold medals and cash prizes to meritorious students. Minister for Higher Education and Pro-Chancellor C.N. Ashwath Narayan graced the occasion.
Vice-Chancellor G. Hemantha Kumar welcomed the guests. Registrar R. Shivappa and Registrar Evaluation A.P. Gnana Prakash were present.
Nearly 30,000 students were conferred with various degrees at the convocation. Women have done better with 20,118 (67.39%), out of the 29,852 total candidates.
Due to paucity of time, the presentation of gold medals, cash prizes and degrees was restricted to only a few students at the convocation and others were presented with the medals and certificates during the programme held in the afternoon.
Chaitra Narayan Hegde from Uttara Kannada district received a thunderous applause when she was called to receive the medals – she won 20 gold medals and four cash prizes, which is highest at the convocation.