Work as hard as possible, invest your best in every endeavor – Dr. Rana Mukherji

Dr. Rana Mukherji
President- Institute Innovation Council & Assistant Professor, Icfai Tech School (Faculty of Science and Technology)
The ICFAI University, Jaipur
Dr. Rana Mukherji Website

Q1. Please share your educational and professional journey?

I was born and brought up in a small town named Khetrinagar. Khetri Nagar is situated about 10 kms away from Khetri (Jhunjhunu District Rajasthan). Ithas a multicultural ambiance due to people from all states coming in and working in the copper project under the aegis of Hindustan Copper Limited, a public sector unit of Government of India. 

My academic journey began with schooling from Kendriya Vidyalaya, Khetrinagar, followed by higher education including Graduation (Bachelor of Science) in Electronics from University Campus, J.N.V University, Jodhpur,  Master of Science in Electronics from School of Electronics, Devi Ahilya Vishwavidyalaya, Indore, Master of Technology in Instrumentation Engineering from University Center for Instrumentation and Microelectronics, Panjab University, Chandigarh and Ph.D. in Electronics and Communication Engineering from ICFAI University Jaipur.

Driven with a genuine passion to serve and contribute to the field of science and technology, with the fundamental objective of promoting the welfare of human civilization and environment protection, I, Dr. Rana Mukherji, ventured into the domain of teaching and research. In my career spanning over sixteen years, I have been associated with the Institute of Technology and Management (presently Sangam University) – Bhilwara, Jaipur National University-Jaipur, and the ICFAI University-Dehradun. Presently, I am working as A. Professor in the Faculty of Science & Technology, The ICFAI University Jaipur, Rajasthan (India). Also contributing through my services as Academic Coordinator at IcfaiTech. My role as the key representative at University for the 50 KW Solar Power Project established in association with Moser Baer Solar Limited has blessed me with the opportunity to work towards environment protection. Recently, I have been elected as 1st President of the Institute Innovation Council established in the university.

I have been felicitated as “Inspiring Bengali in Rajasthan” by the University of Engineering & Management (UEM), Jaipur in association with Shiksha.com in November 2016. I was also elected as a member of the IEEE Executive Committee – Rajasthan Sub-section for the year 2020-21.

Q2. What attracted you towards teaching in preference to any industrial job?

 “Teachers are the backbone of any country, the pillar upon which all aspirations are converted into realities.” – A. P. J. Abdul Kalam

I wanted to take up teaching as a profession to make a selfless contribution to the nation. Teachers are responsible for shaping the future of any country. Teachers, besides parents, inspire their students. Many children look upon their teachers as persons who have influenced them the most. This fosters a sense of satisfaction and pride in the teachers. By taking up this profession I wanted to instil the love for the subject “ELECTRONICS” in my students. I would love to see my students using this subject knowledge for the betterment of humanity. The world today is a small place with fast-changing technology and this served as another driving factor that made me join this profession, so as to make the young learners skilled and knowledgeable to face the challenges in this VUCA environment. Lastly, for being a teacher a person always has to be in the quest for knowledge, thereby making me a lifelong learner.

Q3. You are associated with many professional bodies like IEEE-USA, IET-UK, and many more along with your job. How do you handle multiple responsibilities at the same time?

Teachers are principally knowledge tanks. But this knowledge can be gained only by broadening our horizons. We should not restrain ourselves to certain boundaries as knowledge gets enhanced by sharing our experiences and learning from other’s experiences.  Hence being part of these bodies has helped me develop a technical network and have an access to global knowledge base. Multitasking is the need of the hour. I plan my week in advance, dividing time for all the assignments scheduled. The planning also involves meticulously assigning some time for emergency assignments as well.

Dr. Rana Mukherji
Dr. Rana Mukheji

Q4. You are an Editorial Board Member and Expert Reviewer of many International Journals, Books and Conferences? Can you elaborate your role in these areas?

Currently, I am an editorial board member of around 33 journals and have been an expert reviewer for more than 80 prestigious journals including the journals of Springer, Elsevier, Inderscience, Wiley etc.; books and national/international conferences. Till date, I have reviewed more than 600 articles from the aforementioned categories.

The role of reviewer/editorial board member fundamentally is quite challenging and most importantly, it is voluntary.

While reviewing, I provide thoughtful, fair, constructive, and informative critique in a timely manner on the submitted work. There is an advantage also; it provides advanced access to embryonic thoughts, innovations, and trends within my domain area. It also helps me upgrade my critical thinking experience.

Q5. What are the prominent goals you aspire to accomplish as the President of Institute Innovation Council, The ICFAI University, Jaipur?

The ICFAI University, Jaipur had constituted the Institute Innovation Council (IIC) on 8th January 2020. The IIC is entrusted with the responsibility of undertaking activities and events that will encourage and enhance the innovation & entrepreneurial spirit amongst the students and faculty members of the ICFAI University, Jaipur. The IIC will also be the nodal council on behalf of ICFAI University, Jaipur for interacting with and executing all programs and events constituted by various government undertakings, industrial organizations, trade bodies and allied associations.

In the very small span of five and half months since its inception, IIC has already registered a strong presence amongst technical communities by organizing prestigious events with reputed institutions like IEEE, DST, Rajasthan, National Productivity Council (Govt. of India) and participated as key resource for events conducted by esteemed institutions like National Productivity Council (Govt. of India). Recently, we had also organized an International e-Conference on “Post COVID-19 Strategies for Start-up Ecosystem and Entrepreneurship Opportunities” in association with IEEE Entrepreneurships and IEEE Rajasthan Sub-section. The conference was one of its kinds probably organized for the first time in INDIA in association with IEEE Entrepreneurship and IEEE Rajasthan Sub-section. Eminent Speakers with global images featured in Times Ascent Engineering Mastermind, f6s.com, Your Story, Zee5, etc.; from premier institutes like IIT, NIT, IIIT, IIM; TEDx speakers; Young Entrepreneur’s from Sri Lanka and alumni from London Business School participated and deliberated in the 4 daylong event.

A mother gives birth to a child after 9 months, and she faces different stages during these 9 months. My team members and I have the same vision to give birth to an incubation center at ICFAI University, Jaipur. To begin with, we have ventured for arranging webinars/Guest Lectures/Conferences from Startup Ecosystem, so that our students get acquainted and motivated towards entrepreneurship. The second stage would be to offer certificate courses specific to Entrepreneurship and Startup Ecosystems so that the young and relatively inexperienced entrepreneurs get professional training before initiating with the startup. When you are inexperienced, you need mentors who provide meaningful perspective and appropriate direction, and relevant inputs on how and idea can be converted into a worthwhile project. Therefore, the development of a strong team of mentors from India and abroad will be the next stage. The fourth phase would include the establishment of an incubation center, developing and executing strategies for attracting and onboarding deserving and qualified innovative entrepreneurs, investors and start-ups within or outside the university.

In my opinion, although the inception of any institution is challenging, but all the more challenges are faced in the functionalities associated with proper execution of strategies planned. The process includes managing the entire community including donors, startups, investors, corporates, mentors, advisors, and domain experts. Therefore, a strategic model will be developed and executed to maintain and meet out the objectives of the center.

The next phase will be the networking with incubation centers across the globe and develop the incubation center as one of the best Incubation Centers of the country. I hope, the vision will transform into reality over the years.

Q6. What is the meaning of success in your terms?

Success for me is a very simple mantra. Work as hard as possible, invest your best in every endeavor you undertake and live your life with a sense of satisfaction of having contributed in a significant way towards shaping the lives of many aspiring talents. In true senses, this helps me experience a sound sleep every night and infuse in me a new zeal every single day.

Q7. Who is your source of motivation?

I believe intrinsic motivation is the best source of motivation for me; its like “Keeps fire in your belly”. An intrinsically motivated individual driven inherently without the expectations of rewards truly works for his satisfaction. Internal gratification and goal attainment is what keeps me motivated.