Interview with Dr. Ashok Jammi
Dr. Ashok Jammi
Professor & Principal
Anurag College of Engineering
Hyderabad, Telangana, India
We become what we believe.
There is a law in psychology that if you form a picture in your mind of what you would like to be, you keep and hold that picture there long enough, you will soon become exactly as you have been thinking.
Q1. Please share your educational and professional journey?
I am presently working as a Professor and Principal at Anurag College of Engineering, Hyderabad, Telangana state. I did my Ph.D from Anna University, Chennai in the faculty of Information and Communication Engineering. I have 23+ years of experience in teaching, industry and research. I had worked at various capacities like Principal, Professor, Head, PG Coordinator, Vice Principal and Dean in reputed engineering colleges. I also worked as a Professor in the school of Electrical and Computer Engineering in one of the reputed universities in countries like East Africa and Australia.
I had received 25 international prestigious awards like Bharat Jyothi award, Bharat Ratna Mother Teresa Gold Medal award, Outstanding Scientist Award, Best Citizen’s of India award, Mother Teresa Excellence award, Rastriya Shiksha Ratna Award, Bharat Vidya Shiromani award,Vidya Ratan Gold Medal award ,Distinguish Researcher Award, Glory of India award, Best educationist Award, United Writer’s Association Excellence Award, International Global Achiever’s Award and Best paper Awards in International conferences to name a few. My biography has been included in 2000 Outstanding Intellectuals of 21st century by International Biography Centre, Cambridge, England.
I have been stepped into Marquis Who is Who, a renowned and highly sophisticated public profile in the world, very off late just 3%public stalwarts in our country got this tremendous achievement in India. To me, my greatest achievement till date can be considered to be “The Man of the Year” for 2016 received from the International Biographical Centre of Cambridge , England, an award for my intellectual capacity and thought provoking arena.
I have more than 90 refereed international journal and conference papers and two patents to my credit and presented papers national and internationally. I had authored three text books which are very popular. I had been invited and interviewed by popular television channels in India for inspiring the youth and disseminate information related to career guidance.
I am a member of several editorial boards of many international peer reviewed journals and also a regular reviewer for many international peer reviewed scientific journals and conferences. I am a member in board of studies for reputed universities in India. My professional affiliations and associations inlcude societies like ISTE, CSI, IAENG, TheIRED, UACEE, IAAST and CSTA.
Q2. What are the main key things do you want in your college as a Principal?
As a principal, I want the entire staff of my institution to update themselves with current trends and technologies through continuous learning opportunities from various sources like relevant online courses and by making them attend FDP’s, Conferences and workshops for their personal growth and professional development.
I want to deploy and encourage research oriented faculty members who inspire their students to devise new solutions with the available resources. To sign MOUs with leading multinational companies and industries of well-repute for providing placement and internship opportunities to the students.
To establish Centers of Excellence in each department to promote technology training and inculcate research activities as a part of curriculum. To regularly monitor the activities of industry interaction cell and entrepreneurship development cells to help the students establish their startups by generating seed funds.
I want to implement curriculum according to the industry requirements and the needs of job market by supervising instruction with appropriate professional support. I would like to see that the state-of-the-art infrastructure available in the institution is fully utilized by both teaching faculty and the students.
I would like to see my institution rank high with respect to dealing with competing expectations and as a principal I would like to constantly monitor the progress and growth by making myself available to members of all constituent groups.
Q3. What kind of hurdles did you face in your journey as a Professor and Principal?
As a professor in the department, my work will be limited and restricted to delivering a lecture, monitoring the progress of students in the subject I am assigned to and drafting letters requesting for funding of the projects I am currently working on. Upon receiving grants, allocating the budget and resources accordingly to submit the projects on time and within the given budget constraints looks to be typical but unforeseen circumstances always hinder the progress and becomes hurdles.
Being a professor, my focus will always be upon the innovation and research, projects and funding, teaching and mentoring. Hurdles may be human generated, attitudinal, technological and some may be unpredictable.
As a principal, the leader of the institution, the scenario becomes broader and hurdles arise at every event of time. Decision making itself looks like safeguarding oneself from swinging two edged knifes. I am aware of the fact that, I need to be both target oriented and maintain the balance as well. Every word that I utter had to be thought twice before it is spoken and same is expected with respect to the action.
It’s about a collection of departments that needs coordination and supervision and as a principal, I need to act as a bridge between the management and the requirements that needs to be fulfilled in the concerned departments. Timely implementation of curriculum as per the university regulations and norms may form a hurdle because, achieving the completion of syllabus may not be possible always due to varied unavoidable situations.
Resource allocation and equipment used to reach the academic goals to ensure teachers manage their classroom activity, budget allocation and ordering supplies to ensure successful organization of professional development programs, conferences and workshops etc., needs convincing various people involved looks like a hurdle but can be managed with years of experience and a majority voting, if necessary.
Q4. What was your Thesis topic in Ph.D? Please share some brief about it?
My Ph.D thesis topic was “ROBUST TECHNIQUES BASED OFF-LINE HANDWRITTEN CHARACTER RECOGNITION”. In my PhD thesis, a two pronged approach has been presented to process scanned images of hand written characters, to recognize them and possibly to identify the writers. The first approach is to employ a homomorphic transform called Rajan Transform to classify characters.
Homomorphic Rajan Transform maps a set consisting of a number sequence, its graphical inverse and their cyclic and dyadic permutations, to a set consisting of a unique number sequence ensuring the invariance property under such permutations. This invariance property is also true for the permutation class of the dual sequence of the number sequence under consideration. A number sequence and its dual are like an object and its mirror image. The definition and various results of one-dimensional RT are extended and applied to the two dimensional case.
There are two approaches to the implementation of two-dimensional Rajan Transform: (i) Row-column approach and (ii) column-Row approach. The 2-D Rajan transform obtained using the first approach will not be equal to that obtained using the second approach. In this thesis, results due to application of 2D-RT to recognize handwritten characters are discussed and the usefulness and robustness of the 2D-RT algorithm examined. In the scanned image of a handwritten document, each character is treated as an object (digital image).
First, the character of interest is mapped on a fixed wire frame consisting of 8×8 array of cells. Next, a (0-1)-matrix corresponding to the character of interest is obtained. Finally, 2D-RT is applied to the (0-1)-matrix following either row-column approach or column-row approach exclusively. The 2D-RT spectrum is used either as an input to the training algorithm or as an input to the testing algorithm for matching and classification.
The second approach is to use a novel contour tracking algorithm called ‘Look Ahead Tracer’ (LAT) to resolve a given digital image into its graphically connected contour components called knowledge. LAT works on digital images and extract knowledge from them. Knowledge about an image component is expressed as <x1,y1>/Rn*Dn*Ln*Un*/<x2,y2># where <x1,y1> refers to the coordinates of the starting point; the delimiter * denotes change in direction; <x2,y2> refers to the coordinates of the end point of the contour component. Look Ahead Tracer was used to extract and recognize handwritten single letters and single words from scanned images. Look Ahead Tracer has been developed in the framework of syntactic pattern recognition.
Q5. Which one thing do you want to change in yourself and why?
I don’t see it as a weakness but one thing that I think I want to change in myself is the emotional bonding and attachment with people. Emotional attachment here has nothing to do with beauty. It’s the intelligence, right attitude, wisdom, and of course the intensity and wavelength match that matters the most to me. I admire people for their wit and knowledge. This emotional attachment boosts my morale and leads to a bonding and trust. I believe emotional attachment is the key to learn new things and see the world in a unique perspective.
The learning experiences from the person may it be a man or woman, a student or a colleague, every new interaction gives us a scope to understand things in a better way. Pets too are a part of teaching us the unconditional love. These learning experiences keep us motivated and fresh and even if they leave, we would be having a bunch of memories to cherish for a decent amount of time. Of course, in case, if someone leaves a remarkable impression on our thought processes, it will be a lifetime memory to cherish and to weave the stories around to inspire others.
Q6. Online Studies are growing rapidly. What do you think about online study pattern? Does it better comparing then traditional offline study pattern?
At present, the covid-19 scenario has changed the education system dramatically and a distinctive rise in e-learning is evident. Institutions that have been practicing traditional teaching methods since ages have left with no choice but to opt for online teaching on digital platforms. Both methods of teaching have its own pros and cons but in the rapidly changing world, we need to accustom with the prevailing changes. In person, I may feel that traditional offline study pattern is better but in general, online studies prove to be relevant when compared to traditional offline studies.
In countries like India, many-a-challenges makes it difficult to adapt to e-learning which include affordability and purchasing ability of electronic devices like laptops, smart phones, tablets etc. Some students may not have reliable internet access or internet speed may not fulfill their requirements. Some struggle with technology to participate in digital learning where as some might lose their interest while watching the gadgets continuously. Teachers will have no idea whether the participants have understood the concept that has been explained or if they had paid attention to the lecture delivered.
On the other hand, online studies are convenient with respect to time, commuting, availability of various forms of online study resources, access to new technologies help them learn and retain information in a far better manner. Tedious tasks of taking notes, resorting to rote memorization, listening to long lectures are substituted by active interaction in classroom activities, peer-to-peer collaboration, learning at convenient time, etc., makes e-learning the best alternative and moreover, in the very near future, we can expect a tremendous transformation in e-learning and undoubtedly, it may override the traditional offline teaching methodologies to a greater extent.
Q7. How do you excel students in their academics and career?
As a principal, I see myself as a lifelong educator. I always encourage my students to reach high, help them reach their academic and career goals. As learning is lifelong and continuous, I encourage my students to read repeatedly to understand what the content is all about. While leveraging technology, I ask them to focus on their hobbies, organizational and managerial skill set and devote sometime in enjoying fine art.
I ask them to cultivate the habit of helping the society through volunteering activities and henceforth teach them fundamental habits of character building that includes good conduct, respecting elders and peers, sharing, organizing, attentiveness etc., which leads them towards progress in academics and success in career.
In my personal opinion, a rewarding career can be achieved by any student is possible from the combination of five basic principles, viz., attending the class work regularly and attentively, self-evaluation of attitude, skills and knowledge, updating problem solving skills and decision making abilities according to the industry needs, participating in research-oriented, co-curricular and extra-curricular activities, and analysis and application of theoretical knowledge and its practical orientation through experimentation and project work
Q8. What is your goal for your Engineering College?
As a Principal, I would like to see my institution as one of the top institutions in India by implementing excellent teaching learning practices. Excellent Teaching Learning practices include highly qualified teaching faculty, excellent infrastructure, manageable policies, good supporting staff, approach-ability and accessibility.
Q9. Which are the new streams in Engineering for upcoming students as a career?
The biggest question for engineering aspirants before facing counseling is which branch to choose? With the ever fluctuating trends of the market this question takes an even more intense form. Opting for the current highest in demand engineering stream may direct to land the students in a problem as they will be facing market with their degree only after completing their course i.e. 4 years (B.Tech) or 5 years (Dual degree programme) and the scenario after four years is quite hard to predict.
As per my opinion, the traditional Computer Science and Engineering has emerged and took a giant leap and now, the constituent streams in CSE has come up as:
CS with AI and ML
CS and AI
CS with Cyber Security
CS and Data Science
CS and ML
Similarly, students can choose in Information Technology, Electronics and Communication Engineering, Electrical and Electronics Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Aeronautical Engineering, Petroleum Engineering, Biotechnology, Industrial and production Engineering, Chemical Engineering and other promising streams.
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