Our focus is on growing trend of digital start-ups and e-commerce while fine-tuning programmes: Dr Atish Chattopadhyay, Dean, MICA
Updated on Nov 7, 2015 - 3:28 p.m. IST by Ashish Jha
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In an interview with Careers360, MICA Ahmedabad Dean Dr Atish Chattopadhyay shares his insights on the broad contours of management education and reflects on the future opportunities in the management education. He also elaborates on his vision of supporting the trend of digital start-ups and e-commerce sector. 


Dr Atish also talks on campus placement and explains selection process for management programmes in MICA, Ahmedabad. Read below for full interview of MICA Dean Dr Atish Chattopadhyay:

Careers360: How has the value of management education in India changed over the past three to five years?

Dr Atish Chattopadhyay: There have been two key changes: One, management education in India has started meeting global standards. Going forward, more and more Indian management institutions will achieve global accreditation and be ranked globally. This will create more opportunities for international exchanges for both students and faculty. Also, this will result in a higher level of career opportunities for management graduates from Indian institutions in the global arena.

Second, management education in India has started to appreciate the difference in context with respect to the developing world, particularly India, and has hence become more socially oriented. Institutes have started offering programmes aimed at instilling social sensitivity in their graduates, and graduates today are, in turn, also willing to explore career opportunities in the social sector. Today’s younger generation believes it can make a difference to the society at large.

Careers360: How do you foresee the MBA programme scenario in the coming few years?

Dr Atish Chattopadhyay: I see MBA programmes turning the spotlight towards entrepreneurship, as India is on the cusp of an entrepreneurial revolution, with the digital ecosystem acting as the catalyst. Management education will need to orient itself in grooming graduates with an entrepreneurial mindset, who can thrive in uncertainty and adapt to technology.

Careers360: What is the total intake in the flagship programme at your institute? Please also mention the annual fee for the same.

Dr Atish ChattopadhyayThe sanctioned annual intake for MICA’s flagship postgraduate programme is 180. The fees for the batch of 2015–17 are Rs 14.5 lakh, inclusive of tuition, hostel, food and other incidental expenses. The fee structure for the next academic year is yet to be finalized.

Careers360: How have the placements been at MICA for the batch of 2015? Did you notice any specific trend during the placement season this year?

Dr Atish ChattopadhyayThe confidence that recruiters place in MICA graduates is reflected in the institute’s 100 percent placement record over the years. While it is definitely a fact that advertising and media companies have preferred to recruit from MICA over the years, firms in sectors such as e-commerce, digital and the new-age start-ups have also set their sights on MICA graduates, who are typically recruited in different roles in Advertising, Media Management, Marketing & Sales, Digital Marketing, Market Research & Analytics and Corporate Communications. The key recruiters of 2015 include names like Amazon, Google, redBus and Snapdeal among the new-age companies, and FMCG majors like Procter & Gamble, L’Oreal, etc. I don’t need to take the names from the advertising and media sector as it is a well-known fact that all the big names find MICA to be their happy hunting ground.

MICA graduates, on average, received an annual pay package of Rs 11.5 lakh last year.

Careers360: What will be your selection criteria for academic session 2016–18? Is there any institutional emphasis on gender and academic diversity to accommodate for female and non-engineering students?

Dr Atish Chattopadhyay: MICA is a unique institution with a unique approach to selection. Students are admitted on the basis of a well-rounded personality and potential for leadership. Our unique approach to selection, where quantitative ability is not the only parameter for gauging leadership potential, puts in place a student body that is diverse in terms of gender, academic background, experience, and region of origin.

MICA is probably the only top institute in which women account for more than 50 percent of the class. In addition, about 48 percent of the students at MICA right now come from non-engineering backgrounds. What makes this diversity interesting is that it is based purely on merit—no additional weight-age is given to aspirants based on gender or academic background.

Careers360: What is the USP of your flagship management programme? How do you plan to enrich your flagship programme in the next one or two years?

Dr Atish Chattopadhyay: In addition to analytical competence and integrative capabilities, MICA graduates are creative, consumer-centric, sensitive to the needs of the community and can communicate across stakeholders.

The programme offers unique specializations in Advertising, Media Management, Market Research and Analytics, and Brand Management, which are not available in conventional B-schools.

In the near future, we plan to give our students more international exposure and more opportunities to interact with the industry through projects. Moreover, we will continue to fine-tune our programme keeping pace with the changes in the industry, especially in regards to the growing trend of digital start-ups and e-commerce.  

Careers360: Any message to B-school aspirants?

Dr Atish Chattopadhyay: As aspirants, you need to select a profession of your choice, based on your strengths and liking, and avoid the trap of peer pressure and herd mentality. You should choose a school based on its mission, the strength of its curriculum, pedagogy and industry integration. As you prepare and appear for the selection process, my only suggestion is: “Be yourself”. Every school is looking for the right student as keenly as you are looking for the right institute.

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