Education is a necessary component for one’s existence. India once struggled for freedom and now it struggles to provide education to each of its prospective citizen in order to progress and spread the richness of Indian culture all across. The ideas of Culture and Sustainability jointly results in ‘Cultural Sustainability’ in moving towards which it calls for pensive thinking about whether education can take charge of sustaining our culture and if so in what ways. Working on this idea a National Seminar on “Education for Cultural Sustainability” was organized by Amity Institute of Education (AIE), New Delhi, sponsored by National University for Educational Planning and Administration (NUPEA) at Amity University Campus, Sector–125, Noida.
The seminar was inaugurated by Prof. Ramesh C Deka, Director & CEO, AIIMS, New Delhi , Dr. Rick Levy, Clinical Psychologist , Mrs. Lisa Tatum Levy (wife of Dr. Rick Levy), Mr. Sebastian GADAL, Head of Department Geography, University of Versailles, Dr. Ashok K Chauhan, Founder President, Amity Group and Dr. Ranjana Bhatia, Principal, (AIE) .
Welcoming the august gathering Dr. Ranjana Bhatia said “Amity Institute of Education, New Delhi aims to train the future teachers to essentially become masters of culture and personality apart from being masters of their content. The budding teachers of AIE are nurtured with the feeling that they are the onus of the country’s progress and advancement lies on their shoulders.” She added “Teachers who are the true nation builders of tomorrow have to transmit our rich culture and heritage with comparison and dedication to the future generations.”
Delivering his inaugural address Prof. Ramesh C Deka said “Culture is the integrated pattern of human knowledge, belief and behavior, language, ideas, customs, taboos, codes, institutions, tools techniques, works of art, rituals, ceremonies and various other components and the beauty of India lies in the richness and diversity of its culture which is depicted in the conduct of present and past generations. In the present times the concern is about the ‘need to blend in the global culture’ for which we must develop a more receptive attitude towards learning. The Indian Education system is faulty compared to U.S therefore exposures such as getting acquainted with a new language, food habit or mannerism are worth adding a fillip to, since teachers have to face unseen situations and emerge as a more complete individuals than being just a competent ones.” “Belief in prayers and adherence to spirituality are the core tenets of Indian cultural fabric to which the western world now is paying considerable attention and tribute despite their technological advancements and Scientific temperament.” he concluded.
Presenting his address during the seminar Dr. Ashok K Chauhan, said “The amalgamation of humanity, tolerance, unity, secularism and a close knit social system is what constitutes our Indian culture and thereby makes it diverse and unique. To endure this culture in a changeable world with limited resources and less credit, there is need to develop and execute a strategy for sustainability, the one that takes into its ambit every dimension of the environment : social, economic, cultural as well as natural.” “We cannot live for ourselves alone. Our lives are connected by a thousand invisible threads and all along these sympathetic fibers, our actions run as causes and return to us as results” added Dr. Chauhan.
The inauguration was followed by Technical Sessions on “Types of Teaching Practices & Cultural Demands”, “Adolescents outlook as they form the future human resource of the Nation” and “Amalgamation of traditional & modern practices to Sustain Culture” wherein Mr. Huang Zhigang, First Secretary, Head of Education Department, Embassy of the People's Republic of China, Mrs. Lisa Tatum Levy, Mr. Sourav Banerjee, Senior Specialist - Education and Skill Development, USAID, New Delhi, Ms. Shaguna Gahilote, Project Officer for Culture, UNESCO New Delhi, Dr. Ramesh Bijlani, Sri Aurobindo Ashram, Mr. Devashis Mukherjee, Ramakrishna MissionMr. Deepak Jha, Chief Reporter, The Pioneer, Ms. Malini Narayanan, Principal, Army Public School, Shankar Vihar, New Delhi, Prof. Dr. Gurinder Singh Pro Vice Chancellor (International), Amity University Uttar Pradesh (AUUP), Ms. Mohina Dar, Director, Amity International Schools including many others deliberated on the pertinent issues pertaining to ‘Education for Cultural Sustainability’
“The new pedagogy is to make optimum use of the IT revolution. Universities must align imparting of education and culture with technological advancement to enjoy effective communication reaching far and wide, with the very aids of IT” remarked Dr. Gurinder Singh during the technical sessions.
Interacting with the audience during the technical sessions Mr. Huang Zhigang averred “Education is the most important investment made by a country. The base of education exchange between countries lies is the endeavor to understand each other and the attitude of governments of those countries. It is advisable for youngsters who are in their learning phase to develop the urge for learning foreign languages to better embrace the education opportunities born out of collaborations between universities of different countries.”
“Success stems from cultural conditioning of a person which means to dedicatedly pursue your passion and it is the passion driven dreams that metamorphose into achievements” pointed out Mr. Deepak Jha while interacting with the audience.
The national seminar concluded with a stimulating interactive session between the esteemed guests and audience and was also attended by Heads of Departments, students, faculty members from various institutions of Amity