Deccan Education Society, the Parent Body of FC and BMCC, Unveils New University, Redefining Learning Horizons (#UniversityWithLegacy)

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India, 25th September 2023: The prestigious Deccan Education Society, popularly known as the DES, headquartered in Pune and renowned for its remarkable endeavours in holistic education and societal advancement, is delighted to launch its latest educational venture, the Deccan Education Society Pune University (DESPU). The institution shall encompass distinct schools tailored for Commerce and Management, Science and Mathematics, Engineering and Technology, Humanities and Social Sciences, and Design and Arts; thus launching a cumulative of 5 schools and 21 programmes under them.

The Deccan Education Society, founded in 1884, is spread across India through 18 colleges and 21 schools, boasting an enrollment surpassing 50,000 students and over 2,000 staff members. DESPU is the Deccan Education Society’s biggest and most ambitious initiative so far, keeping in mind the advances it has already achieved with the renowned Fergusson College (Pune), Brihan Maharashtra College of Commerce (Pune), Willingdon College (Sangli) and Kirti M. Doongursee College (Mumbai) throughout its 138-year legacy. DESPU is the first university under the aegis of DES.

Conceptualised and conceived with a holistic approach towards education, DESPU is firmly aligned with the framework of the National Education Policy 2020, reflecting its core principles. In addition to offering foundation courses at the bachelor’s level and specialisation courses at the major and minor levels, the university will also engage its resources in Experiential Learning Courses. With the intention of creating an inclusive environment in the educational ecosystem,  where paramount focus will be placed on both the accessibility and quality facets of education, DESPU is all set to bring about the much-needed transformation that the education industry necessitates. 

Highlighting DESPU’s vision and mission, Prof. Prasad D Khandekar, the Founding Vice Chancellor of DESPU shared, “The need of the hour for India right now is to provide a world-class education that will equip students to become future leaders and contribute significantly to regional, national, and global developments. While the aim is to provide globally competitive education, the value system will also ensure quality learning above all. We persist in pursuing this identical trajectory, progressing to the subsequent rational phase as a hub for generating knowledge and resources built on years of expertise and knowledge.”

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The target for the Deccan Education Society Pune University is to become a world-class university that is multi-dimensional (at the forefront of multiple disciplines) and technology-driven, with the establishment of three research institutes focusing on Indian Knowledge Systems, Cyber-Physical Systems, and Life Sciences. These research institutes will have accomplished researchers, project grants and state-of-the-art infrastructure. Endowed with a rich legacy spanning 138 years, the university maintains unwavering academic rigour, cultivating a tradition of scholarly excellence where rigorous intellectual pursuits are embraced, shaping individuals into erudite leaders of tomorrow. 

DESPU will follow the recent NEP 2020 guidelines where students will qualify with an honours degree combined with research, upon completion of the four-year programme. Under this system, students can switch between universities and accumulate more credits to fulfil the requirements for their respective academic credit banks: 160 minimum. This comes under the National Credit Framework of the NEP 2020, under which students can drop out after any academic year. If a student leaves at the end of year one, they receive a certification; those leaving after the second year receive a diploma; at the end of the third year, a degree is awarded, and finishing all four years culminates in an undergraduate honours degree.

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Deccan Education Society’s Fergusson College, BMCC and Kirti College are accredited with an ‘A’ rating by the reputed National Assessment and Accreditation Council. The DES Pune University is anticipated to uphold not only the demanding education benchmark set by its sister institutions but also to enhance the distinguished reputation that radiates from its extensive alumni network. Indeed, Deccan Education Society’s alumni comprise an array of accomplished pioneers: great Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar, Arjuna awardee cricketer Shubhangi Kulkarni, ex-Prime Ministers PV Narasimha Rao and Vishwanath Pratap Singh, billionaire businessman Cyrus Poonawalla, great architect BV Doshi, actors Shriram Lagoo and Smita Patil, filmmakers Sai Paranjpye and Sriram Raghavan, advertising guru Prahlad Kakkar, Marathi writer Padma Shri Bhalchandra Nemade, historian Manu S. Pillai, ecologist Padma Bhushan Madhav Gadgil, and biochemist Padma Bhushan Padmanabhan Balaram. These alumni have left a significant impact on the lives they have touched along their journey.

DESPU is poised to stride confidently into a glorious future in the 21st century, where a seamless integration of digital technology and human creativity will produce a remarkably intelligent singularity that should take India to greater heights. The university will have a specialised division for corporate relations, which aims to offer 100% placement assistance through career counselling and skill-development workshops. By integrating global perspectives, fostering intellectual curiosity, facilitating hands-on learning experiences, and promoting student engagement with real-world scenarios through industry collaborations, the institution is committed to offering a comprehensive and internationally esteemed educational journey.  By 2028, the aim is to be a leading private university in Pune. By 2030, DES Pune University hopes to be among the top 100 universities in India.

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