"Be the change you want to see in the world."
Inspired by Mahatma Gandhi’s eternal teaching, 'I’M The Change - An Initiative on Sustainability & Social Responsibility' (SSR) was launched on October 1, 2016 on the eve of Gandhi birth anniversary with two main components: (a) an experiential learning course - SSR - that strives to groom socially responsible business leaders and entrepreneurs capable of balancing profit with purpose; (b) A talk series called 'I'M The Change Talk' that exposes students to real change makers. SSR course is a required three-credit experiential learning course that runs for six months in the first year of the MBA Programme.
The initiative’s objectives include: (a) Experiential appreciation of societal contexts and challenges of people who are unlike oneself. (b) Developing understanding of social responsibilities in individual and business contexts. (c) Experiencing the joy of contribution. Differentiators include: (a) A full-fledged course (SSR) -not just a volunteering experience—built on the pedagogical philosophy that states, “Doing leads to knowing and impacts being.” Essentially, the execution of social projects helps inculcate values of contribution and seflesseness rather than self-centeredness. (b) Execution in partnership with nongovernmental organizations and government agencies. (c) Exposure to people unlike oneself and a charge to: identify a specific challenge to be addressed, develop a baseline, propose an implementation plan and implement it, and assess the plan’s initial impact and its sustainability potential. Students apply innovation and design-thinking for social problem-solving. (d) Interaction with real change-makers via the I’M The Change talk series, an integral part of the course. (e) A multidimensional evaluation structure by peers, partner, and faculty. (f) Social projects that are in alignment with sustainable development goals. (g) Alignment with the social development priorities and missions of the government of India. (h) Direct involvement with the students’ committee.
To date, the impacts of the I’M The Change initiative are manifold: (a) 74 social projects undertaken in the first year (2016-17), and 91 in the second year (2017-18) touching thousands of lives of underprivileged people. (b) Multifaceted impact in alignment with the SDGs, covering education, skill development, women empowerment, livelihood generation, waste management, environmental sustainability, social entrepreneurship, and more. (c) Contribution toward some flagship missions of the government of India, such as Clean India, Skill India, and others.(d) The desired learning outcomes largely achieved- described by many students from the SSR experience as “once in a life time.” (e) Many students proactively published articles (e.g. on Linkedin, InsideIIM). (f) In the maiden year itself, a rating of seven or higher on a 10-point scale by around 70 percent of students when asked how far the course helped them realize societal realities, helped in self-development as a holistic person, and enabled experiencing the joy of contribution. Additionally, more than 70 percent of student groups received a rating of seven or higher on a 10-point scale from partners. (g) Media features or mentions in by Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME), GreenBiz, and others.(h) Accolades received at the July 2017 PRME Global Forum in New York.(i) Selection of IMTG as a PRME Champion for the 2018–19 cycle in December after joining PRME as an “Advanced Signatory” in May 2017. (j) Winner of AACSB’s Innovations that Inspire Challenge 2018 for “Enhancing Approaches to Leadership Education”. (j) Earned the Gold Award for “Developing a future-ready curriculum” at the prestigious Indian Management Conclave Awards in 2017.(j) Publication of a book featuring 10 select projects titled I'M The Change...Parables from a Developing World.
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