The fourth International Conference on Experiential Learning (ICEL) at the Institute of Business Management (IoBM), Karachi featured prominent corporate leaders, academicians, scholars and government officials. It was held on November 16 and 17, 2019 at IoBM. Zubair Gilani, Chairman Board of Investment attended this conference. During his address, he talked about the problems Pakistan is facing including the scarcity of resources and overpopulation. He called for Pakistanis to have faith in their capabilities and work diligently for a prosperous future.
During the experts’ panel discussion, Dr. Kaiser Bengali, Pakistan’s leading economist highlighted the need for academia to draft their researches in a language the policymakers and government officials can understand. He viewed that academia must take the first step to reduce the gap with the industry. Dr. Bengali said that academia must collaborate with the industry for mutual growth. The panelists of this discussion shared their views on the triple helix approach. Under this concept, academia, industry, government, civil society and the media collaborate for research, entrepreneurship and commercialization.
While sharing his views, Veqar ul Islam, Director, Jaffer Business Systems, said that simplicity in today’s world translates scalability. According to Mr. Veqar, business processes must be user-friendly to influence the masses. Addressing the audience, Dr. Amjad Waheed, CEO, NBP Fund Management called for academia to market their research and services just like products to entice the industrial sector. Speaking at the occasion, Dr. Muhammad Memon, Chairman BISE, Hyderabad shared that academia must approach the industry to get the required resources and capital. Sharing his views, Rafique Mustafa, representing the Planning and Development department, Sindh government, said that the industry, academia and the government must join hands to find avenues for growth in their respective sectors. Engr. Irfan Ahmed, Chairman IEEE, Karachi and Dr. Zain-ul-Abidin, Director General, R & D, HEC were also included in this interactive panel discussion.
Prior to that, addressing the inaugural session, Majyd Aziz, President Employers Federation of Pakistan advised the students to acquire relevant skills, knowledge and experience by taking field internships to achieve professional excellence. They must work with the lower management to understand the industry and businesses. During his address, Talib S. Karim, President IoBM said that the challenge to faculty and management is to bring technology to classrooms. He said that the post-millennial generation spends more time on their smartphones and has a shorter attention span. He highlighted the use of technology in classroom teaching. The ICEL 2019 was organized under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Amanat Ali Jalbani, Conference Chair and Dean CBM. He highlighted that experiential learning is embedded in the curriculum of IoBM. He mentioned of the capstone projects that enable students to identify solutions to the problems faced by industries. Speaking at the conference, Dr. Syed Irfan Hyder, Rector IoBM, mentioned that IoBM students have completed 500 capstone projects in collaboration with 200 companies to resolve the real issues faced by the industry.
Keynote speaker of ICEL, Dr. Alice Kolb, addressing via video link from Hawaii, said that experiential learning is an endless process of discovery by students and faculty. Dr. Kolb, President and CEO, Experience Learning Systems, USA, stressed that learning is a holistic process. She viewed experiential learning as a philosophy rather than a tool. Addressing the audience, Beau Lefler, faculty at the University of Hong Kong, said that students keep their studies and lives separate. He said that experiential learning help students blend their life with the learning process. This facilitates them to comprehend theoretical knowledge and apply it to real-life situations and issues to resolve. During this two-day conference, experiential learning professionals and experts, both national and international, shared case studies, research and practices through panel discussions, presentations and workshops. They covered various disciplines such as media management, business management, environment and energy, education and health management.
Published on the website by IoBM Public Relations department