Unmarred academic excellence has been the flagship of Oxford College of Engineering and Management 

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Prof. Er. Hari Bhandari, the Founder Principal of Oxford College of Engineering and Management, is the senior Vice President of OPEN and Vice President of AECoN. Mr. Bhandari has shared his views on the present status of the college, contemporary status of Pokhara University, the hardships experienced by the PU affiliated colleges and gateways to overcoming the existing problems.  Excerpts:

At present, a huge mass of students is leaving the country for higher studies; as a result, the country is experiencing acute brain drain. As an academician and educationist, what could be the reasons for such alarming signal of the brain drain? Aren’t we able to give the assurance of quality education and career prospects to those dillydallying youths?

In my view, the first pillar of education is the family itself. Each individual develops perception about his/her culture, education and life from his/her family and peer groups. At the present moment, the attraction of an individual for foreign employment and education develops from his/her family. Similarly, he/she develops a feeling of traversing in a foreign country for higher education after +2 education from his/her family and peer groups.  Besides, the government is equally responsible for persistently increasing brain-drain. From my experience, most youths leave the country for higher education with the vested interest of earning money. Around 2 lakh youths leave the country annually in the name of higher education. After reaching their destination, most students apply for PR and citizenship and permanently settle there. He/she carries his/her properties from Nepal too. So, it is not only a brain-drain problem but also an outflow of capital to a foreign land. If the controlling measures are not executed soon, our country will be the country of mere elderly people. 

In this regard, the government and private sector should work hand in hand to solve this problem. The media also have a significant role in controlling the brain-drain by raising awareness among the policy makers.

You’ve said that as many as 200000 Nepalese youths leave the country annually for higher education which will consequently lead the country towards accommodating only elderly people and children if the problem is not resolved immediately. In your opinion, what sort of plan should the government immediately bring to address this heart-breaking upheaval?

The government should bring both short term and long term national policies regarding education and employment. The university should update and revise the curriculum considering the globally demanded skills and fast-paced time. Education should be connected with labor. Parents and colleges should encourage youths to study and work in Nepal by explaining them the career prospects they can grab in their native land too. Similarly, the media should play a positive role in instilling the nationalism and patriotism in the minds of youths. Besides, the university and the bank should bring the policy of education loan for education and start-ups. 

Do you think the colleges of Nepal are globally competitive?

I confidently say that the universities and their associates in Nepal are competent enough to produce globally competitive human resources but due to political influences and interferences in universities, quality of education has declined appallingly. In perspectives, the students and professors should remain unaffected by political parties in Nepal.

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