I was a part of the corporate world. Had my share of perks and comfort, and took a leap of faith to come out of the comfort zone and pursue my first passion, education. It’s been a roller coaster ride, and the only constant has been the degree of difference we have been able to make in the lives of our students. In a way, their success is our success.
We started Praxis Business School in 2007, and like every other business school, we were trying to differentiate ourselves in this highly competitive and crowded market. Several friends from the industry, ex-colleagues and associates, suggested that we participate in building a supply chain for the analytics domain, as this area was certain to explode in volume and there were no established pipelines to cater to the demand for trained resources. Analytics is bleeding edge and complex – and requires accomplished, well-qualified professors to design and deliver effective programs. We are fortunate to have with us a team of excellent teachers, from both the academic and the corporate worlds, who have what it takes to create suitable analytics resources for the industry.
We started our first program in 2011, with just eight students – in fact we were the first in the country to start a full-time program in this discipline. We had to go out and ‘sell’ analytics, as the awareness levels in the student and professional community were very low. We conducted several seminars and workshops to create awareness and primary demand for the domain.
Things are very different today. We have two intakes per annum, January and July, and run programs out of our Kolkata and Bangalore campuses. We have graduated several batches of students who are doing brilliantly for themselves and making a significant contribution to the Indian analytics story. As talent builders, our responsibility is to keep ourselves abreast of the latest developments in techniques and technologies of this rapidly evolving science – so that we can deliver a contemporary, relevant education to our students.
Our second responsibility is to find suitable career opportunities for our graduating students – ours is a full-time classroom program and our students leave their jobs, take a career break and repose their faith in Praxis.
‘’Who am I outside of work?” I have been a fairly prolific quizzer – both as a participant and a quiz master. I continue to be a member of the Kolkata Quizzing Fraternity but have no pretensions of being a quizzer anymore. I played a fair bit of hockey at college and corporate levels, and I do play some golf, though not very regularly – and love to travel. I am a sports and music buff – watch a lot of hockey, cricket, soccer and tennis and enjoy listening to several genres of music. Interestingly, a large share of my weekends goes into interviewing and selecting candidates for Praxis! I would love to have the time to do at least one trek a year.
One thing that keeps me going is teaching. I love teaching and interacting with students. These students sometimes amaze me with their lines of thought, and keep me youthful – I am lucky to be part of this community. Their success drives all of us at Praxis – and some of their transformation stories make all the effort worth its while. I guess life is always a mixed bag – but on the whole, I am very happy that I made the decision to chuck my corporate career to set up Praxis Business School.
Given a choice, I would love to see the use of analytics for social impact. We cannot be an uneducated and a developed nation at the same time. Similarly, we cannot be an unhealthy and a developed nation. In my opinion, access to good education and good health care is mandatory for India to make its journey toward becoming a developed country. The questions are about the ‘’reach’’, quality and effectiveness – and I think the appropriate use of analytics can make a significant impact in this area.
My advice to young men and women – if you like numbers and love problem-solving you should straight away join the analytics world. I promise, your journey will be exciting! If in doubt, talk to me!!
Meet Charanpreet Singh: A mentor, Prolific Quizzer, and an Analytics Visionary