KSOU to help more rural students

MYSORE June 26. K. Sudha Rao today took charge as the new Vice-Chancellor of the Karnataka State Open University (KSOU).

The outgoing Vice-Chancellor, N.S. Rame Gowda, handed over charge to her at a simple function at the KSOU Vice-Chancellor's chamber here this morning. Dr. Rao signed the appointment letter sent by Governor, T.N. Chaturvedi, who is also the Chancellor of the university.

Dr. Rao, who was senior fellow of the Higher Education unit at the National Institute of Education, Planning and Administration Cell, New Delhi, before her current assignment, is a native of Mysore. She was an alumna of the Maharani's Art College, where she studied for her B.A. degree.

First woman VC for KSOU

Addressing presspersons after assuming charge as the first woman Vice-Chancellor of the KSOU, Dr. Rao promised to make use of her experience in the field of distance education to carry on the good work of her predecessors. "I am delighted to return to my native place,'' she remarked. Dr. Rao, who was involved with the Indira Gandhi National Open University (Ignou) since its inception in the 1980s, holds a doctorate in Educational Psychology from Delhi University. She studied at Harvard University, Cambridge, U.S., on a Fulbright scholarship. She had a stint at the CPSE, in Manila, Philippines, as a subject expert. Dr. Rao has written several books on education, distance education, "vocationalisation" of education at the "Plus 2" stage.

A word of praise

She had a word of praise for Prof. Rame Gowda for his contribution to the popularisation of the distance-education concept. She vowed to continue in the same tradition, and expand the activities of the university to rural areas. "I am told that there are about 36,000 students who have enrolled with the university for different courses. I would certainly like to reach out to more students, and increase the strength (of the university),'' she said. Dr. Rao hoped that the KSOU would become the best university in the country, and promised to strive towards achieving the objective during her tenure.

A parting gift

Prof. Rame Gowda presented a cheque for Rs 50,000 for creating an endowment in the KSOU with the objective of encouraging women to acquire Bachelor's degrees using the distance-education system. Eighty per cent of the interest accrued on the endowment will be utilised for presenting one gold medal/cash prize called "KSOU ex-Vice-Chancellor Dr. N.S. Rame Gowda medal'' at the university's annual convocation. The gold medal/cash prize will be awarded to a woman candidate who passes the B.A. examination in her first attempt in the minimum period by securing the highest marks. If more than one candidate secures the same marks, the award shall be distributed equally in terms of cash.

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