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Fourth Annual IC3 Conference concludes in Mumbai with 900+ global educators


The city of Mumbai was witness to one of the biggest educational congregations in the country - the fourth edition of the International Career and College Counseling (IC3) Conference 2019.

The conference took place on 28th and 29th August at the Grand Hyatt Mumbai with two full days charged with collaborative dialogues and insightful sessions on issues of sustainable and inclusive counselling for student success. The event saw participation from 900+ global educators with a shared vision and passion for guiding every student in making an informed career choice through collaborative and inclusive counselling practices.

With a special emphasis on 'inclusion', this year, the IC3 Movement reached out and included every pocket of the world that called out for support, either through scholarships (to attend the annual conference) or an IC3 Regional Forum (one-day events, often in areas seldom visited).

During his welcome address, Ganesh Kohli, Founding President, IC3 Movement and Chair, 2019 IC3 Conference addressed a common misconception by explaining that counseling is not only for the elite or the top 2per cent students, or students who want to study abroad, but it's for every student out there who needs guidance. He also drew an interesting analogy by comparing a student to an aircraft without a navigation system, and further said that counseling will function as the navigation system in an aircraft, providing students with the necessary direction in life.

Released on the occasion of the fourth IC3 conference, the event saw the unveiling of a contemporary and analytical report titled Global Knowledge and Talent Flows: An imbalanced equation? The timely report by IC3 and IIE (Institute of International Education) highlights the global flow of knowledge and talent especially in the form of students who travel abroad in the light of an environment of higher costs and growing competition for college seats.

"The student mobility landscape is poised to undergo significant changes, and it is time for us to revisit the brain-drain issue and examine the fundamental ethics, assumptions, and power dynamics that underpin student mobility, thus ensuring that the mobility of students and talent is based on principles of access, equity and inclusiveness," said Dr Rajika Bhandari, the report's author and Senior Advisor for Research and Strategy at the Institute of International (IIE).

Having a 300per cent growth with attendance from what it was in 2016, the 2019 conference witnessed participation from 35+ countries from South Asia, Southeast Asia, the Middle East, North America, Europe, Oceania and others. Moreover, the conference hosted its pioneering graduation ceremony of the first-ever cohort of IC3 Institute, with 23 graduates who successfully completed the 1-year certificate program in career and college counseling.

The 3rd edition of the IC3 Awards also felicitated career and college counsellors and university representatives for their outstanding contributions to the field of career and college counselling. Among the winners were, Geeta Jayanth, Principal, Legacy School, Bangalore who was awarded the 'Molly Abraham Lifetime Achievement Award' for transforming many young lives with her phenomenal work, Shikha Vij, Career and College Counselor, Step by Step School, Noida who received 'Counselor of the year award' and Praseeja Nambiar, Career and Guidance Counselor from Stonehill International School who received the 'Emerging Counselor Award'.

From the universities, Kanchi Khanna, Director, Communications and Outreach, Krea University, received an award for 'Counseling-Based Approach to Student Recruitment/Admissions.'

Keeping the conference theme - 'Finding the Elusive Fit: Navigating Domestic and Global Opportunities' alive right through the time, the conference featured 47 rich sessions for high school counselors, principals, and universities by several master presenters, perceptive keynote address, planned networking opportunities, and high school/university fairs, exclusively for educators. While the conference comprised of several prestigious groups of renowned speakers, some of the distinguished ones were Dr Divya Chhabra - a leading homoeopathy practitioner, who spoke about her unique method of practice that may help one understand the students and support them in making better career choices.

Dr Barry Craig, President, Huron at Western University, Vineet Gupta, Founder and Trustee, Ashoka University, Kapil Gaba, Vice-President, Marketing, Bennett University, and Dwarika Prasad Uniyal, Dean - Faculty of Business, Flame University also enthralled the audience with their address.

Several noteworthy schools such as Aditya Birla World Academy, American School of Bombay, The Bombay International School, Garodia International Centre for Learning Mumbai, Dhirubhai Ambani International School, Oberoi International School, SVKM's JV Parekh International School, Universal Education, Utpal Shanghvi Global School, and Vibgyor Group of Schools also supported the conference as host schools.

The IC3 Conference also displayed an array of pre and post-conference events. Starting with the two IC3 pre-conference workshops conducted along with the College Board, at SVKM's JV Parekh International School and Dhirubhai Ambani International School, these workshops provided thematic, skills-based training for professionals responsible for guiding students from India to world-class higher opportunities.

The historic, third annual Presidential Forum, in particular, hosted by the American School of Bombay saw an assembly of presidents and senior educators of educational institutions and business, industry, and governmental leaders from around the world. The special event featured leaders like Dr Barry Craig (President, Huron at Western University, Canada), Dr Bhimaraya Metri (Director, Indian Institute of Management, Tiruchirappalli, India), Dr Pankaj Chandra (Vice-Chancellor, Ahmedabad University, India), Dr Sunder Ramaswamy (Vice-Chancellor, Krea University, India), Craig Alan Johnson (Head of School, American School of Bombay, India), Michelle Whittingham (Assoc. Vice-Chancellor, UC, Santa Cruz, U.S.), and Prof Dishan Kamdar (Vice-Chancellor, FLAME University, India); among others. The conference week successfully commenced and ended with the highly productive IC3 Fair and Symposium for students (grades 9-12) and parents from leading high schools in Mumbai. The fair and symposium attracted over 3000 students, who had the opportunity to meet and interact with university admissions officers from over 100 universities from 14+ countries, including India.

"The solution to a world full of students without career and college counseling is not just to help individual students, but to empower every school to help their students. This is why we remain committed to sensitizing and empowering schools - sensitizing them about their responsibility towards proving guidance (not just teaching Mathematics and English) and empowering them with training and resources for their staff to deliver good guidance for their students," said Ganesh Kohli, Founding President, IC3 Movement and Chair, 2019 IC3 Conference.

In his closing remarks, Ganesh Kohli announced that the 2020 Annual IC3 Conference will be held on 26-27th August in New Delhi.

Through the Annual IC3 Conference, IC3 Regional Forums and the IC3 Institute, the IC3 Movement envisions that every high school, out of the 176,000 in South Asia and the surrounding region, will run a robust, well-resourced career and college counselling office.

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(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, September 12 2019. 11:31 IST