International Women’s Day is celebrated annually on March 8th to recognize women’s social, economic, cultural, and political achievements worldwide. This day is also an opportunity to acknowledge and recognize the tremendous efforts of women who are championing the cause of women’s rights, equality, and well-being.
Over the years, women have made significant strides in their struggle for equal rights and recognition in various areas, including education, politics, culture, and society. They have been the driving force behind the success of many organisations and in doing so, they have demonstrated remarkable strength and resilience.
Today, we want to recognize and appreciate the women leaders in the education sector, who have made significant contributions towards shaping and transforming the academic landscape, empowering the younger generation, and breaking gender barriers. Their remarkable leadership and vision have not only inspired others but also paved the way for a more equitable and inclusive educational system.
Let’s hear from some of the prominent women in leadership positions within the higher education sector!
Dr. Madhu Chitkara, Pro-Chancellor, Chitkara University
Dr. Madhu Chitkara is an accomplished educator with over four decades of experience in the field of education. Her vast knowledge and expertise have helped shape Chitkara University into one of the leading institutions in the country, with more than 60 industry-linked programs across all academic levels. Her unique leadership style, which involves leading by example and from the front, has been an inspiration to many young women around the world.
Here’s what Dr. Madhu says about the role of women in Higher Education Institutions:
Dr. Madhu shares, “If you educate the man, you educate the person but if you educate the woman, you educate the nation.” (Father of Nation – Mahatma Gandhi).
Women’s role in the social-economic development of a country is crucial. It constitutes almost half of the population in the world. Education in general and higher education, in particular, is a milestone of women’s empowerment because it enables them to respond to challenges, confront their traditional roles and change their life. Women’s participation in higher education is an important pathway towards gender equality in the economy and society. Chitkara is a testimony to Women’s empowerment as most of the Leadership positions are spearheaded by Women.
Theoretically, the need for higher education for both males and females is the same. But practically it could be said that female education is more important than that of males. In this connection, I may refer to the statement of philosopher-president and noted educationist Dr. S. Radhakrishnan (1948) He says “there cannot be educated people without educated women. If general education has to be limited to men or women, the opportunity should be given to women. From them, it would most surely be passed on to the next generation.” It is time now that the World supports and recognizes women leaders as intelligent, deliberate, goal-driven, focused, accomplished, successful, ambitious and visionary.
To encourage more and more women to pursue leadership positions, I would like to put across that it is now the time for another social revolution and to redefine the role of women’s higher education around the Globe by removing gender inequalities and creating an environment where women will be able to take confident steps toward higher position by higher education and leading the World to newer heights and zenith.”
Radhika Shrivastava, Executive Director, Fortune Institute of International Business (FIIB)
Ms. Radhika is a multifaceted leader who has found her calling in helping those around her achieve their full potential, especially women. Her upbringing, education, and global experience have shaped her unique philosophy on workplace culture, which she has implemented successfully as the leader of a business school. Her goal is to create an inclusive culture that extends beyond the boundaries of the campus and serves as a legacy for future generations.
Dr. Tabassum Ara, Principal, HKBK College of Engineering
Dr. Tabassum Ara holds 24+ years of rich experience in teaching, training, and research. As the Principal of HKBK College of Engineering, she has been providing strategic direction and vision to the institution since 2021. She urges all women to believe in themselves and pursue their passions. She inspires and empowers women to create a more equitable and inclusive world for future generations.
Dr. Sutapa Bandyopadhyay Neogi, Director, IIHMR, Delhi
Dr. Sutapa B. Neogi is the Director and a public health specialist actively engaged in research and teaching at the International Institute of Health Management Research (IIHMR), Delhi. Her goal is to mentor students and young professionals who can be change agents in future; those who can see through problems – directly or indirectly impacting health, explore them scientifically and engage in advocacy.
The higher education sector is in dire need of women leaders to bring in diverse perspectives and create more equitable and inclusive learning environments. Women leaders can inspire and guide female students, promote gender equality, and establish policies that foster work-life balance and support for women faculty members. Moreover, studies have demonstrated that organizations with more women in leadership positions tend to excel and innovate. Therefore, it is imperative for the higher education sector to take active measures to boost the number of women in leadership positions.
International Women’s Day is an important day to raise awareness about breaking down barriers that hinder women’s growth and learning. We express our gratitude towards all the women leaders in the higher education sector for being a great source of inspiration for other women around the world.
Let’s Empower Each Other & Grow Together…
Happy International Women’s Day!