In Conversation with Mr. Sanjay Padode, Founder IFIM Law College
Interview with Mr. Sanjay Padode, Founder IFIM Institutions which includes IFIM College, IFIM Law College and IFIM Institute of Social Sciences.
After completing 20 years in the IT space, Mr. Sanjay was keen to dedicate his self to the cause of education and took over as the Secretary of Center for Developmental Education, a not for profit society which runs the IFIM Business School. Since the past five years CDE has grown from 200 students to 700 students and from a single institution to 4 institutions, which include IFIM College, IFIM Law College and IFIM Institute of Social Sciences. IFIM Business School has received many accolades and awards for innovation and impact from various bodies such as ASSOCHAM, Bangalore Management Association and other professional organizations. IFIM Business School also received its first international accreditation during this period and is now pursuing the highest acclaimed global accreditation presently. Sanjay is also working on establishing a University and a K-12 school. Both these projects are expected to go live in 2017.
He has been an advisor to the Karnataka State Health Commission. He has also been the executive member of Association of Indian Management Schools and currently he holds the following portfolios.
• Secretary, of the Karnataka Chapter of Education Promotion Society of India (EPSI)
• Member of Academic Advisory Committee of NIELIT (An autonomous scientific society of Department of Electronics and IT, Ministry of Communications and Information Technology, Govt. of India)
He was interviewed by Mr.Anuj Kumar, Founder & Editor-in-Chief, Legal Desire Media & Publications.
- Give us a brief introduction about IFIM Law College.
IFIM Law College is affiliated to the Karnataka State Law University (KSLU) and is approved by the Bar Council of India. At IFIM, the emphasis is on providing our students with a more holistic educational experience. The core curriculum is taught by experienced faculty members with foreign law degrees and is complemented by co-curricular as well as extra-curricular activities. Slowly but surely, we are developing a vibrant mooting and debating culture, with several students already having participated in international competitions. We also have a dedicated internship and placement cell that attends to students’ career goals and ensures their professional development. We have a world-class campus with state of the art infrastructure which facilitates ICT (Information and Communication Technologies) usage in the teaching-learning process. The law library, which is the heart of a law school, is also being curated and it already boasts of some excellent national and international legal titles. We also have excellent hostel and sports facilities, a fully quipped gym and professional trainers. All of this makes IFIM Law College a prime destination for legal education in Bangalore, the Silicon Valley of India.
- What was the main aim behind establishing IFIM Law College and how is it different from other law schools?
I have always been intrigued by the curriculum of the National Law Schools and I was fortunate to have had a close exposure to the same when my daughter made it to National Law University – Delhi. I was completely convinced that the legal curriculum is great foundation for an aspiring student as it builds critical thinking skills, develops networking ability and also gives a solid understanding about the society.
IFIM institutions have a rich and varied history. IFIM Business School was setup 20 years ago under the aegis of the Centre for Developmental Education (CDE), a non-profit society. In 2009, CDE helped establish IFIM College which offers widely popular programs like B.Com, BCA, BBA and BA (Journalism). In 2014 we setup the IFIM College of Social Sciences and the Law College was established the following year. Setting up the law school is a major landmark in the journey of IFIM Institutions as quality legal professionals are needed for managing litigations, arbitration and for meeting the legal compliances in this borderless world. The addition of law faculty to our institutions will also augment our business management curriculum and going forward will help us advance to our ultimate aim of becoming a Management University.
What makes IFIM unique is our Personality Enhancement Program (PEP). It is important to develop the ability to endure adversities, and experience is all about learning through making mistakes as failures are harbingers of adversity. With this in mind, PEP poses challenges to our students to enable them to face and overcome their fears and complexes. PEP mandates that our students undertake tasks and activities which are normally ignored by India’s modern education system. The course is divided into two streams: lifestyle management and life-skills development, with tasks being categorized under the former or the latter. Some of these tasks are long distance running, gym training on a regular basis, public speaking for 20 hours in a semester, reviewing a book and presenting the same in front of an audience and developing innovative ideas for solving real life problems.
The ultimate goal of PEP is to ensure that IFIM Law College graduates will be continuously employable in the market. Being employable does not mean simply getting job offers or a lucrative pay package. We want our students to add value to society throughout their professional careers. To be continuously employable, one has to be a continuous learner, a trait which is developed through PEP.
- How is your institution imparting practical skills to students apart from academic knowledge?
We recently conducted a court visit to the Karnataka High Court for all of our students. They were accompanied by faculty members and the visit gave them an insight into how the courts actually work. Our students will be taught how one is to enter the courtroom, address the judge, address fellow advocates, what colour socks to wear and how to dress (white shirt, black gown/coat, dark pants and starch band). Students will also enjoy the privilege of being mentored by seasoned legal professionals who have attained success in their chosen field. This will help them understand the nuances of our legal system and the challenges our society faces in implementing and executing the prevalent laws.
- Kindly let us know whether there is any provision for scholarship for your programs and if yes how to apply for it.
We are in our second year now and hence offering scholarships is not feasible. However all our other institutions do offer scholarships which are merit cum need based? Having stated this, we are not averse to offering scholarship to an extremely bright student who cannot afford to pay the fee and is keen to pursue the law program in our college.
- Does your Institution provide Campus Placements and Placement Assurance?
Our institutions have never believed in offering placement assurance; however, we invest huge sums of monies to provide students job winning training and internship/research opportunities. We also have a dedicated service organization viz Centre for Continuous Employability (CCE), which helps students with career counseling and final placement opportunities.
Our focus initially is to ensure that our students are exposed to different types of internships, which cover litigation, corporate law firm internships, NGOs and Policy Research Internships. Each student is assigned a faculty mentor, and once they are clear about what kind of a legal professional they want to be, every effort is made to ensure that they are exposed to their chosen field through apprenticeships. At this point we cannot assure that every student will be placed, but what we can promise is that each of them will be employable.
- Your Message to our readers and wannabe lawyers who will take admission this session?
Our goal is to create a significant impact in our society by generating research and creating ethical legal professionals. We are confident that this focus of ours will surely propel us amongst the best rated legal education institutions in the region. The endeavor here is to give you the student an education, and not just a degree. We aim to be a purpose-driven, peak-performing well-knit family of students, parents, alumni, faculty, staff and management. We want to lead, not follow. I would like to end this by stating that, if a student is hungry and determined to contribute to society then IFIM Law College is the best fitting institution for quality legal education.
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