An effective treasurer ensures financial exuberance for appealing administrative functions- Santosh Mani Neupane

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Santosh Mani Neupane, a dynamic personality in the education field, is the Founder Director of Nobel Academy, Nobel College and Nobel Hospital. He has gained 14 years of experience of PABSON since he joined Central Committee of PABSON as a member during the tenure of Rajesh Khadka.

Mr. Neupane has shown his performance working as a central committee member for two terms and as treasurer for one term. As he is the only candidate for the post of Treasurer for the upcoming tenure, he is sure to get unanimous consent of the PABSON officials before the convention.

He has shared his views with College Readers. Excerpts:

What do you think of the role of private schools in education development in Nepal?

Private schools have played a pivotal role in the development of education in Nepal. In fact, the number of private schools germinated in the aftermath of the First Mass Movement of 2046 BS. And they created a milestone in academic pursuits of private institutions and have been successful in producing globally competitive human resources. As per the data, more than 600 trillion has been invested in education by private investors, which has contributed immensely to curtailment of the liability of the government. Similarly, it has created job opportunities for more than 200000 teaching and non-teaching staff directly and for more than this population indirectly.

Similarly, private sector has been imparting quality education to the large volume of students in the country which has stopped the outflow of national currency to foreign universities in the name of quality education. If such contributions are not made as many as 30% of students will leave the country in pursuit of higher education in foreign lands. This is the role to be played by the state instead of private institutions. Still, the state is not positive towards the private education sector. Instead of expressing gratitude, the government has imposed discriminatory policy and disparities on private institutions.

Unarguably, private schools have won the trust of the public for delivering quality education to a large number of students. This could be true private institutions are equipped with modern approach to teaching and learning activities and offer world-class pedagogies based on student centered education.  

While working as Treasurer, what strategies have you built that would make PABSON stronger?

PABSON is the largest umbrella organization in Nepal in terms of its number of member schools. I have got an opportunity to hold the responsibility as Treasurer in the Central Committee of PABSON. However, the PABSON has undergone insurmountable predicaments PABSON since its establishment. One of the excruciating circumstances was the various phases of Covid-19 pandemic which created lots of upheavals in smooth running of academic activities in the world. We were in the struggle of life or death since we suffered massive financial and health crises. Due to the pandemic, our existence was at risks since we could not demonstrate our performance conveniently. We had only 1 or 2 years to work, but most of our time was squandered looking for an alternative to survival of most private institutions. However, we are proud of what we did at time of crises. We purchased the building for the Central Committee of PABSON and accomplished various tasks.

I am content that I have fulfilled my commitments which I proclaimed at the 14th National Convention. Nonetheless, there may be some commitment to accomplish soon. There was no any reliable data in the past, but we have accrued the actual data of the number of students, fee structure of our member schools, investors’ personal and professional details, and properties of the member schools.

The PABSON has to do lots of activities to bring major breakthroughs in the academic sector in Nepal. It has to make PABSON financially sustainable, ethically strong and organizationally stable. We still have a few issues to be settled along with policy-related problems.

In your opinion, what are the prime responsibilities of treasurer in an organization? What convincing plans have you prepared for this?

The prime responsibility of the treasurer is to ensure financial management and make the organization financially sustainable. The PABSON has recently purchased a building for its office with an investment of more than 12.5 crore excluding maintenance expenditure. It has liability of about 6 crore rupees to be paid in the bank. So, I have an ambitious plan to make the PABSON debt free within two years of time.

To accomplish this task, I will collect funds from all the member schools as a renewal charge and create a consensual environment to collect other funds from various convincing programs. For this purpose, I will introduce some effective programs. 

What challenges do you envisage that the incoming leaders have to overcome them?

I have already shared that PABSON is one of the largest organizations in Nepal. It had worked a lot for its member schools in the past. Still, there are some policy- related problems to be solved. The state has adopted discriminatory policy against private schools, teachers and students. The discriminatory policy of the government has created depression among private school investors which will consequently degrade the quality of education. So, my question to the state is that ‘Is the state fully prepared to send most Nepalese students to foreign lands for quality education since it can’t ensure such quality in Nepal? In this regard, the state should be serious about these issues. My logic is that private schools are established with the consent of government by fulfilling all the requirements. So, the state should treat private schools equally as it treats the government schools. So, the new committee has huge responsibility in settling the policy related problems. Similarly, it has prime responsibility to make the PABSON sustainable and solve the internal problems seen among various member schools.

How much has been allocated for the successful completion of the 15th National Convention?

In my estimation, it requires around 8 to 8.5 million rupees to complete the National Convention smoothly. We have planned to collect the funds from the member schools, participating representatives and candidates.

What suggestions would you like to convey to the participating school representatives of the 15th National Convention?

I would like to request all the member schools to participate in the National Convention and visit our newly purchased building, which is a pride of all the PABSONists. Similarly, I would like to suggest that all the participating school representatives should share each other’s problems and seek a solution together. Another suggestion to the representatives is that we should elect the team with wider consensus in order to strengthen the status of PABSON.

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