Presidential candidate requires strong stewardship skills to resolve paradoxical issues-Yuvraj Sharma

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Having gained appealing work experience of effective governance as General Secretary for two terms and Senior Vice President for one term in HISSAN, Mr. Yuvraj Sharma possesses the proven leadership capacity to lead HISSAN in the path of creating academic milestones. He has proclaimed his candidacy for the Presidential post in the 8th National Convention.

Mr. Sharma is a visionary pathfinder in education. He is the President of Whitehouse Education Foundation and Principal of Himalayan Whitehouse International College and IB World School. He is a philanthropist and also serves as the Vice-president of Mission Rebuild Nepal. Mr. Sharma has shared his views on tribulations of each private institution has to endure and created an emphatic vision for the migration of the number of Nepalese students going to foreign lands in pursuit of higher education. Excerpts:

Could you please give a brief introduction to the 8th National Convention of HISSAN?

HISSAN is going to organize its 8th National Convention on Chaitra 25th and 26th. It is expected to be a historic convention for the educationists of private sector who will gain a phenomenal opportunity to meet various personalities of highly effective expertise. With a surmise of making the National Convention historic, grand and purposeful, HISSAN has already declared that the preliminary session of the conference will be held on 25th Chaitra which incorporates academic challenges addressed by renowned personalities from three diverse sectors, i.e. government, private and independent. The conference will seek resolutions for most problems emerging over education realm and make a progressive decision on the preparation of road map to tailor academic activities across the nation. The conference will witness paper presentation from political parties, government representatives, HISSAN representatives and independent intellectuals as well as university professors who will also give their constructive feedback on private education. In addition, the major political parties will express their perspectives on private education. In this regard, it is a wider education discourse which clarifies the stances of the government and political parties on private and public education.

The Honorable President Bidhya Devi Bhandari will grace the program as Chief Guest. The Convention lasts for two days. Since the first day of the conference commences all the sessions including panel discussions, a new committee for the upcoming tenure will be elected on the second day of the conference, i.e. 26th Chaitra. We hope the new executive committee will be formed unanimously.

The 7th National Convention was concluded with strong determination and promises for strengthening and extending the functions and area of HISSAN, but HISSANists themselves are not sure that HISSAN will have such impacts. What are the reasons behind such anomalous mindset?

Due to various unavoidable circumstances, the 8th Convention was delayed for 3 years. The pandemic rendered devastating effects in the entire academic activities along with HISSAN’s scheduled programs. The 7th Convention had elected new executive committee under the leadership of Ramesh Kumar Silwal unanimously, and he accomplished his responsibility successfully and efficiently which was bequeathed to him by the previous leaders. He had also got an important responsibility of national sports council. There were many commitments made, many of which were left unaccomplished due to stand-offish predicaments. However, we are sure they will be accomplished in the upcoming tenure. Despite this, HISSAN executive committee embraced a phenomenal achievement even at times of pandemic crises.

On the other hand, our General Secretary, Lok Bahadur Bhandari has also been entrusted with Scouts activities as Coordinator. And the presence of Ramesh Kumar Silwal and Lok Bahadur Bhandari as HISSAN leaders has set an example that HISSAN is a conglomeration of academically robust leaders.

“As Senior Vice President, I am an aspirant to the leadership which will be decided during the Convention. As I have already worked as the General Secretary for two terms under the chairmanship of Umesh Shrestha, and as Senior Vice President under the leadership of Ramesh Kumar Silwal, I believe I am the most eligible candidate for the presidential post.”

In your opinion, what quality should the incoming leader possess for effective stewardship of HISSAN?

Since the test of fire creates finer steel, appalling situations develop strong leadership. HISSAN got competitive leadership during the tenures of Umesh Shrestha and Ramesh Kumar Silwal who demonstrated a significant role in systematizing private education as they lobbied with the government and the stakeholders to strengthen the stance of private institutions. As a result, their successful tenure formed a direction for private schools and universities.

In this regard, the emerging leaders should prepare an environment to foster and headway their predecessors. Apart from this, the emerging  leader should possess inherent transformational leadership qualities of academic benchmarks, such as entrepreneurship, national education act, government policy, international education practice, and capacity of lobbying with the concerned authorities.

As Senior Vice President, I am an aspirant to the leadership which will be decided during the Convention. As I have already worked as the General Secretary for two terms under the chairmanship of Umesh Shrestha, and as Senior Vice President under the leadership of Ramesh Kumar Silwal, I believe I am the most eligible candidate for the presidential post.

Could you please elucidate your convincing strategies which underpin your claims for the presidential post in the 8th National Convention?

I have fully understood the issues of private education and can cope with the forthcoming challenges. I have a long-term vision to campaign  with the government and concerned ones for the stability and enrichment of private education sector, alongside the cooperation between private and public education bodies. In this regard, the development of education in the nation is not possible by excluding the private sector. If I am elected the president, I will focus on establishing a vigorous  relationship amongst private, community and public sectors which will surely strengthen the organizational camaraderie and tailor academic stance of Nepal.

Similarly, my priority adheres to mitigation of brain-drain repercussions which have persistently affected Nepalese youths in the name of higher education in foreign swathes. For this, I have prepared an action plan which consolidates global acclamation in national level education.

In your opinion what should be done for the assurance of academic excellence in Nepal?

In the context of Nepal, human resources, hydel power, and tourism should be developed proportionately. And education should be connected with employment and life-enhancing skills. The government should work hand in hand with the private sector, and the discriminatory and suppressive policy of the government on private education sector should end. At present, the government has created insurmountable barriers in the provision of job and higher education privileges for the students who have attained a qualification from a private school or college, which is the reason for compelling those youths to leave the country without second thought.

Therefore, the discriminatory and suppressive policy on private education is one of the main reasons for the exodus of Nepalese youths to foreign lands. If I am elected the president, I will raise all these issues and show my utmost efforts to achieve convincing results. Our surmise adheres to minimization of brain-drain and reinforcement of brain aid. In this regard, HISSAN will move ahead with its masterplan to develop Nepal as a hub of excellent education even for foreign nationals. We ensure academic excellence through institutional development.

The organization will work on establishing a few model schools and colleges at local and provincial levels and will negotiate with the government strategically. The target of our organization is to bring foreign currency to Nepal by developing globally acclaimed curricula.

What message would you like to convey to the delegates attending the 8th National Convention?

It is our heyday. A national convention enables us to discuss further education policies, programs, legislation and selection of future leadership. So, it is historic and important from every aspect. There are many academic issues which should be dealt with tactfully for a better tomorrow without wasting a resource and energy. So, I convey my message to all the participating school/college representatives to attend both national education conference and national convention and figure out what the current education system of Nepal demands for educational breakthroughs.

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