Great Lakes Institute of Management is a leading management institution which offers world-class programs designed to help each student realize his or her full potential. The Institute was established in 2004 and has created waves in such a short span across India.
Professor V. Srivatsan from Leonard N. Stern School of Business (New York University), will be visiting Great Lakes Institute of Management on January 10th 2012 along with 20 students of his course titled "Social Enterprise and Economic Development: The Indian Context," to understand and explore the ground realities that create a win-win situation for the students and villages.
Professor Srivatsan is Clinical Associate Professor of Economics at the Stern School and teaches a variety of courses in the areas of international macroeconomics, international strategy and multinational management. He teaches currently in the undergraduate, full-time MBA, Langone and Executive MBA programs. He has been an adjunct Professor at the Columbia Business School as well, where he has taught a variety of courses, including ones on "Executive Leadership" in the Executive MBA program. He is currently working on a project to compile a number of case studies of how social entrepreneurship can and has promoted economic development in rural India.
"KARMA -YOGA" Project at Great Lakes
"Karma Yoga is the attaining through unselfish work of that freedom which is the goal of all human nature"
(Swami Vivekananda, Complete Works, Vol.1, p.110)
Trying to learn leadership in a classroom is like trying to learn swimming in a classroom. Just as a swimming pool is required to learn swimming, a live setting with actual potential followers is needed to learn leadership. KARMA-YOGA, a Leadership Experiential Project (LEP) is an integral part of the Post-Graduate Program in Management (PGPM) curriculum at Great Lakes.
The project, guided by Dr. Venkat R. Krishnan (Director, Yale-Great Lakes Center for Management Research), is a unique medium for students to connect with ground realities and experientially learn transformational leadership. The LEP creates a mutual win-win situation for both the students and the villages. While the villages get budding managers to enable the villagers to lift themselves into their better selves, the students acquire a first-hand understanding of what it means to create followers and transform them.
There are 20 villages surrounding the institute's campus that have been adopted by Great Lakes for the LEP. Students visit these Karma-Yoga villages every week. The mission is to enhance the self-esteem and self-efficacy of the villagers (i.e., to empower them), so that they are able to lead a better quality life.
In this attempt by Great Lakers to transform people belonging to nearby villages, the key focus has been in the fields of education, health, agriculture, and small business. Over the past years, Great Lakers have been involved in organizing health camps, financial inclusion programs, agricultural training programs, activity-based learning programs, etc., in association with leading hospitals and several NGOs. Karma-Yoga project runs throughout the year and has been quietly transforming the lives of the people around the institute's campus.
Following are the activities done by Great Lakes students in the villages:
- Education: Teaching children subjects such as Mathematics and English and providing them with career guidance.
- Health and Sanitation: Conducting health camps, eye camps and health awareness sessions in collaboration with hospitals such as Sankar Netralaya, Dr. Agarwal's and Chettinad Hospital.
- Training for farmers: We enable the farmers to get trained in various agricultural activities and animal husbandry. With the assistance of organizations such as Krishi Vigyan Kendra and Centre for Culture and Development we conduct training sessions for farmers in mushroom cultivation, organic farming and poultry farming - Training for Women: We also organize training for the women in the village so that they can be made financially independent. Recently, we collaborated with a non-government organization, Hindustan Bible Institute to conduct stitching classes for women.
- Infrastructure: Take up small projects like building school walls and water wells.