Acknowledging the importance of possessing a Degree by its hospitality students, the National Council for Hotel Management – NCHMCT has renewed its pledge by extending its MoU with Indira Gandhi National Open University IGNOU for its 3-year B.Sc. and 2-year M.Sc. Programs for another period of five years. The collaboration between the two national bodies began in 2002 and has grown from strength to strength for the benefit of the student community, especially for those who wish to pursue higher education in India and abroad.
A MoU to this effect was signed and renewed between the two organisations on Tuesday the 11th December 2012 for a period of five years in the presence of the Hon’ble Minister for Tourism. Secretary (Tourism), Vice-Chancellor IGNOU and officials of the two organizations witnessed the signing ceremony.
The IGNOU, established through an Act of Parliament in 1985, provides higher education for continual professional development through open and Distance Learning, having a large network of regional and overseas centres. The NCHMCT is a society registered under the Societies Registration Act and is an autonomous organisation under the Ministry of Tourism, Government of India pioneering hospitality education in the country and also having a large network of affiliated Institutes of Hotel Management that provide bulk of the trained manpower required for the hospitality sector in the country. Today, the NCHMCT has a network of 51 affiliated Institutes of Hotel Management all over India, 21 of which are funded by the Central Government, 14 by State Government and 16 in the private sector.
Through the collaborative arrangement, students pursue five theory subjects offered by IGNOU and thirty-four subjects taught through full-time institute laboratory and classroom learning in the various operational aspects of hospitality, to qualify for a 3-year B.Sc. Degree which is issued by IGNOU. The IGNOU representatives are also involved during the Joint-Entrance Examination JEE conducted by the National Council for Hotel Management on an All India basis.
The annual academic schedules, orientation programs for faculty and other such activities are monitored through a Joint Co-ordination Committee – JCC comprising IGNOU and NCHMCT officials which meets periodically. Head of the School of Tourism and Hospitality Services Management – SOTHSM at IGNOU is in-charge of the program and handles its affairs through appointment of IGNOU Co-ordinators at each of the NCHMCT affiliated Institute of Hotel Management. The IGNOU periodically broadcasts specialized programs, conducted by experts, for IHM students through its GyanDarshanTV Channel and through EDUSAT, its educational satellite. Under the joint collaboration, each year approximately 7000 students are enrolled for the 1st year of the B.Sc. program, while 15000 students pursue the course annually in the three different years of the program.
The student community has greatly benefited from this arrangement as they are now able to pursue not only higher education in the form of specialized Master programs, either in hospitality or in management, through Indian and Foreign Universities, but also secure respectable jobs in different fields other than in the hospitality sector. There is constant endeavor to improve academic administration and curriculum upgradation through involvement of faculty from both institutions. Periodic Orientation Programs are organized for the benefit of faculty members in either institutions.
The fresh renewal of MoU will provide greater recognition to the hospitality program in the country, which is witnessing major tourism growth and consequently requires large number of trained personnel.