Dr.S.B.Mujumdar is the Founder and President of Symbiosis – a multi-national, multi-lingual and multidisciplinary educational complex of repute. A distinguished academician and educationist, he is also the Chancellor of Symbiosis International University (SIU).
Dr.Mujumdar was born on 31st July 1935 at Gadhinglaj, a Taluka in Kolhapur District in Maharashtra. He had his school education at Gadhinglaj and college education at Kolhapur and Pune. In his Master's Degree (M.Sc.) in Botany, he stood first class first with distinction in Pune University. He obtained his Doctorate (Ph.D.) in Microbiology from Pune University.
He joined Fergusson College, Pune as Professor and Head of Department in Botany which position he held for 20 years. He was a recognized post graduate teacher and a guide for Ph.D. students. He was a member of the Pune University's Executive Council, the Senate, Academic Council (for 14 years) and Chairman of the Board of Studies in Botany (for 9 years). He was also I.C.C.R's Foreign Academic Advisor in Pune University (for 7 years).
He has published over 50 original research articles in several national and international scientific journals. He has authored several books on Life Sciences and has contributed over 200 articles on Science, Education and Youth Development. He has also been the Chairman of the Educational Wing of FICCI in 2005-2006.
Deeply touched by the hardships suffered by the Foreign students - especially Afro Asian students - studying in Pune, he established in 1971 'SYMBIOSIS' with a view to help them and provide them a 'Home away from Home'. He soon realized that education is the best medium for promoting international understanding. He, therefore, started establishing educational institutions imparting quality instruction in diverse disciplines e.g. Management, Law, IT, Computers, BioMedical Science, Engineering, International Business, Geo-Informatics, Media & Communication, Photography etc.
Presently, Symbiosis has 46 institutions and 32000 students from all States of India and 85 foreign counties. The Ministry of HRD, Government of India, conferred upon Symbiosis in 2002 the status of 'Deemed to be University'. Many of Symbiosis institutions are ranked amongst the top 10 institutions in India and they have a placement record of almost 100%. Realizing the importance of distance education, Symbiosis has established, SCDL - Symbiosis Centre for Distance Learning - which conducts a number of on-line courses and has over 2 lakhs of students from India as well as many foreign countries.
All Symbiosis institutions are generally need–based. These are run on and adhere to the best ethical practices. The Faculty is selected purely on merits and without considerations of caste, creed, religion or region. One of the unique institutions established by Symbiosis is SIMS - Symbiosis Institute of Management Studies (for Defence Personnel and their dependents) - which provides management education exclusively for children of Defence Personnel. Another innovative institution is the 'Pune Police Public School' managed by Symbiosis and which provides education to the children of Police Personnel. Apart from these academic activities, Symbiosis has also established a magnificent Dr.Ambedkar Museum and Memorial which houses the personal belongings and memorabilia of Dr.Ambedkar. It has also established an Afro - Asian Cultural Museum.
Dr.Mujumdar is the recipient of many awards / honors. The Government of India has conferred on him 'Padma Shri' in 2005 and 'Padma Bhushan' in 2012. Tilak Maharashtra Vidhyapeeth has conferred on him 'D. Litt.' in 2016. He is recipient of first 'Dr. APJ Abdul kalam Memorial Award' in 2016. He has received Punya Bhushan Award (2009), FIE Foundation Puraskar (2006), 'Maharashtra Gaurav Puraskar' (2003), Top Management Club Pune's "Excellence in Education" Award, the Rotary club of Pune's 'Service Excellence Recognition Award (SERA)', The Rotary Foundation of Rotary International Paul Harris Fellow, Giant International Life Time Achievement Award, Lion Gaurav Puraskar, Pune Municipal Corporation's 'Roll of Honour for Life-Time Achievement' (2006), Pune Festival Award and many others.
Dr. Rajani Gupte is the Vice Chancellor of the Symbiosis International University. A distinguished academic, she received her Doctorate degree in Economics from the prestigious Gokhale Institute of Economics and Politics, Pune. She has been actively engaged with higher education for over thirty years, both as a professor and researcher. She has taught at many foreign universities as well, including the Oakland University, Michigan US, and Bremen University for Applied Sciences, Germany.
She has been a part of the leadership team at Symbiosis for over two decades. She joined Symbiosis as a founding member of the Symbiosis Institute of International Business in 1992. She was the Director of the Institute between 2004 and 2012. Her headship led the Institute to be established as one of the top-ranking business schools in India. A capable institution-builder, Dr. Gupte has also earlier held the positions of Dean - Faculty of Management, Dean-Academics and Pro-Vice Chancellor at the Symbiosis International University.
She is an independent Director on the Boards of several subsidiaries of L & T Finance Ltd. She has been frequently invited on committees of important organizations, such as International Trade Panel - Confederation of Indian
Industries (CII), World Trade Organization Committee, Govt. of Maharashtra, and Chemtech World Expo. She has also served on committees appointed by the UGC and on working groups on higher education.
Dr. Gupte is one of the ten women selected from across Asia who have attended the 'Women in University Administration programme' sponsored by the U.S. Department of State. Dr. Gupte has been awarded for her outstanding contribution to Education by Lokmat National Education Leadership Awards 2015 and the "Swayamsidha Puraskar 2015" by Lions Club of Pune Elite.
For her valuable contribution in the field of Education, Dr. Gupte, has been awarded the 'Think Pure Award' by the 'Think Pure Social Welfare Foundation' in 2016, in memory of 'Late Shri Dajikaka Gadgil'.
PRO CHANCELLOR, SYMBIOSIS INTERNATIONAL (DEEMED UNIVERSITY) & PRINCIPAL DIRECTOR, SYMBIOSIS
Dr. Vidya Yeravdekar is the Principal Director of Symbiosis Society, and the Pro Chancellor of Symbiosis International University. The Symbiosis International University is a multi-disciplinary, multinational, multi-cultural University that having 45000 students from all States of India and international students from 85 countries. The Symbiosis Society not only has under its ambit the Symbiosis International University but also has K12 Schools, College of Arts and Commerce and Museums- the Afro Asian cultural museum and the Dr. Ambedkar Museum.
Dr. Vidya holds a Post Graduate Degree in Medicine, a Degree in Law and Ph.D. in 'Internationalisation of Higher Education in India’. Having presented papers at various National & International Conferences, she has numerous research publications to her credit and has also authored several books. Ranked No.14 amongst India’s top 25 Powerful Women, Dr. Vidya has been instrumental in bringing in innovative approaches to promote internationalisation of higher education in India.
As a member of University Grants Commission (UGC) for two terms, Central Advisory Board of Education (CABE) under Ministry of Education and Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) under Ministry of External Affairs, she has been a facilitator of innovative approaches to higher education in India.
Dr. Vidya has been appointed as a member of the expert group on Global Outreach of Higher Education, formulated by UGC to implement the National Education Policy 2020 that was rolled out by the Ministry of Education Govt. of India, member of the Advisory Group of Analytical and Advisory work (ASA) World Bank, Advisory Committee of the IAU for the global survey on internationalization and member of the Board of Trustees of Muscat University, Oman.
She is a Chairperson of the FICCI Committee on Higher Education and serving 3rd term. Dr. Vidya has been appointed as Member of India Brand Equity Foundation (IBEF) Trust set up by Ministry of Commerce & Industries, Government of India, to promote the ‘Brand India’ label in overseas markets, member of the Expert Group constituted by the UGC for Development of Educational Framework for Global Citizenship in Higher Education Institutions and UGC Expert Committee constituted to prepare the guidelines for Credit-Based Courses and Internship opportunities.
She has elected as Member of the Central Governing Council of Services Export Promotion Council (SEPC) set up by the Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Government of India, Member of the General Assembly of the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR), Governing Body of Yashwantrao Chavan Academy of Development Administration (YASHADA), Governing Board member of the International Sports University, Government of Maharashtra and Member of the NEP implementation committee of Government of Maharashtra. She also serves on the Board of Directors of Emcure Pharmaceuticals Ltd and Bajaj Holdings & Investment Limited.
Dr. Vidya has been appointed as the first Chair of the OBREAL Global India Chapter a for a period of 3 years. She is a member on the Board of several organisations like Rayat Shikshan Sanstha, Research Committee of the Association of Indian Universities (AIU), Public Health Foundation of India, Symbiosis University of Applied Sciences Indore, Symbiosis Skills and Open University, Pune. She is a member of many corporate bodies such as Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI), Confederation of India Industry (CII), Maratha Chambers of Commerce and Industries (MCCIA) and Not for profit organisations like HK Firodiya Foundation, India International Centre (IIC), Pune International Centre (PIC) & Pune Citizens Police Foundation (PCPF).
She has also been a member on many other organizations such as Independent Director on the Board of RITES Limited under Ministry of Railways, Government of India, Education Quality Upgradation and Inclusion Programme (EQUIP) Committee, Ministry of Education, Govt. of India, Indian Institute of Corporate Affairs, Yeshwantaro Chavan Maharashtra Open University, State Knowledge Advisory Board of Higher Education, Government of Andhra Pradesh, Sub-Group on Higher & Technical Education and Skill Development of Chief Minister’s Advisory Council, Government of Rajasthan.
Dr. Vidya’s hard work has won her numerous awards and accolades. Her continuous endeavour to innovate and initiate has helped Symbiosis attain its present respect and admiration. Having accomplished all such feats, Dr. Vidya is now committed to shaping Indian higher education globally through her extensive work in the field of internationalisation of higher education.