Dr. Madhav Prasad Baral, one of the pioneers of ten-plus-two education in private education sector in Nepal, is the Founder Principal of NIST. One of the founding members of HISSAN, Dr. Baral has rendered his services in National Academy of Science and Technology (NAST) as a scientist. The NIST Foundation is one of the largest academic institutions renowned for a range of course choices in various levels imparting education from pre-primary to master’s level. The NIST, the pioneer educational institution in Nepal for plus two programs, has set benchmarks for academic excellence. Dr. Baral opines that positive attitude and competent team members are key to attainment of phenomenal success. College Readers has caught up with him for a short interview: Excerpts:
How would you assess the 29 years of unmarred academic excellence of NIST Foundation from this point of time?
The NIST foundation has been imparting a globally acclaimed education to the students. We have produced qualified students during the journey of 29 years. Our graduates have demonstrated their outstanding performances in their higher studies and job landing sector. Our products that are successfully enrolled in medical and engineering courses have outnumbered other institutions in terms of scholarship and grades achievement. Our students from science and management fields have been achieving phenomenal successes in both studies and employment.
How would you acknowledge the entire graduates and their performance in their workplace?
The NIST is a leading and apex level education institute managed by highly experienced professionals. This benchmark has ushered the institution in its greater heights making it one of the most trusted institutions of Nepal. It has more than a three-decade long glorious history of academic excellence. As many as 28000 students have graduated from this college till the date. They have deserved significant positions in every workplace of the world. NIST National School Sciences has always been at the vanguard of education in Nepal, particularly in ten-plus-two level education which has one of the best science labs and promotes hands-on education. So, our products work more practically in their workplace since we have adopted new and modern pedagogy, and teaching and learning activities according to the change of time.
Would you share the secret behind such outstanding performance in ten-plus-two level?
I had never thought of reaching this level, but I was confident that we could run a good and well-established institution. I am a person with positive thinking and persistence. Due to the positive attitude and high level of capacity of our team to carry out educational programs, the institution has attained a phenomenal success. Therefore, I believe that it is our remarkable achievement in the field of private education.
How did NIST ensconce itself as the most coveted science college for plus two level?
The NIST has earned trust and reputation in the field of quality education. We never compromise on the delivery of quality education. So, we are planning to run NIST Foundation from the school level to the campus level. We are hopeful that it will be more fruitful for the enhancement of quality in our educational provisions. In addition, the NIST Foundation focuses on practical experiment and assessment, which have been made strictly mandatory.
Similarly, the Foundation provides a range of scholarships to the deserving students as well as the students from low economic backgrounds. We have been spending around 20 million rupees annually. The fee structure is affordable and all the necessary facilities are available. Besides these, the NIST provides education materials, supplementary classes and proper guidelines for practical education besides extracurricular and cocurricular activities.
After immersing grades eleven and twelve in school level education, the quality and charm of ten plus two education seems to be diminishing. How would you analyze the scenario as you’ve have been closely observing both HSEB and NEB?
Only the provision of curriculum is not sufficient rather the government should give detailed ideas, guidelines and instruments, set frameworks and ensure pre-requisites for the delivery of quality education. The college and the teachers should be made highly qualified, trained and equipped with various teaching techniques. The evaluation system should be appropriate and fair. Education should not be limited to theoretical knowledge; it should focus on practical orientation. Although the existing curricula are consummate theoretically, they lack proper equipment, resources and implementation directives, which shows that the NEB is sluggish in proper monitoring and mentoring.
Ten-plus-two education is supposed to be the cornerstone of university courses. Does its consolidation into school level education carry the essence?
As far as I know, school education is included up to grade 12 in international practice too. In our country, the education up to grade 8 is named as basic education and 9 to 12 is secondary education. The curriculum is prepared based on its policy, but its execution is challenging because there are no proper resources distributed to all institutions equally.
What message would you convey to the SEE graduates and their parents who are anxiously awaiting enrollment in NIST?
First of all, the students are suggested that they analyze their own aptitude, habit and compassion and destination of life. If you want to study science, you should develop your curiosity and interest. Similarly, the parents should know the history, infrastructure, faculty and academic environment, sustainability and feedback from the past graduates. NIST College is one of the best destinations for ten-plus-two education, especially for science education. So, I would like to welcome the desperate career hopefuls to our institution.