Mon, 6 Dec 2021

Creativity: a running force

Posted on Tuesday, July 22, 2008

“Creativity is not merely an impulse - it is a conscious system of processes, flaring from the creative spark,” says Dr Akash Rose, Director of Academics, NICC, to Poonam Jain

What brought you to the teaching profession, and the birth of National Institute of Creative Communication (NICC)?
I have always – one might even say, ‘hereditarily’ - been involved in education. My father began his career as a lecturer at MCC before he joined government service; my grandfather was the principal of an international school - so you could say it runs in the family!
During my college days, before I earned my doctor’s Degree from AIIMS, I taught language and science part-time at a school in Delhi, to earn pocket money. Later, an enjoyable part of my life was the teaching of final-year BE students as their project guide. A significant part of my professional activity has been as a consultant scientist - to Government of India projects and private industry. Teaching has been a recurring activity for most of my adult existence.
However, what really triggered the creation of NICC was destiny - my wife is a graduate of the famed VSLIPU, Belgrade University. She is a deeply committed teacher, artist and designer and soon after we met, we realised that both of us derived our deepest satisfaction from teaching. It was from this seed that NICC and the NICC Education Trust were born.
What led you to embrace the creative field?
Creativity has been a running ambience throughout my life - my mother is an artist and her mother a musician. I first played my paternal grandmother’s violin when I was five years old. I was then trained formally, later winning several competitions in classical music.
However, my greatest passion is in the visual creative world – the near-mystic galaxies of photography and digital imaging. I started when I was seven and when my father gifted me a Canon QL19, the nascent flame turned to fire. I have remained deeply and professionally involved ever since. Canon India appreciated my efforts and identified NICC as a center of excellence in teaching photography. This led to NICC becoming the only authorised Canon pro center in Bangalore – the pro centers are intended to teach and educate. The acceptance of my photography on the international market and the publication of my teaching articles in ‘Better Photography’ (a Tata Infomedia publication at that time) further strengthened my resolve. Additionally, it was an honour to be invited as convenor of photography to the international abilympics hosted by India in 2003. These events have all shaped and reinforced my dreams.
What are your comments on the future of visual communication provided by NICC and the scope on lines with the other professional courses?
One has only to look at the world around us to perceive the all-pervasive dominance of visual communication in our daily lives – advertising, commercial photography, photojournalism, film & television, illustration, retail design, visual merchandising, packaging design & product design, book design and publishing. It is surprising that most people don’t even consider this question, “that who actually does all this?” These fields fall under the broad category of ‘visual & mass communication’. There is a constant, growing, national and international demand for trained professionals in these areas, and there is very little supply of truly qualified, specialised and career-ready personnel.
The NICC offers many courses that give students an edge. We provide an undergraduate twinning programme. The objective of the twinning programme is to ensure global employability of graduates and to impart the value of both traditional university education and up-to-date specialised industry-oriented skills in keeping with international standards. Another is the postgraduate international diploma which is equally respected worldwide.  
Can you comment on the bandwidth the creative fields provide in this day and age? The scope seems to have definitely widened, but do you consider the picture still bleak in terms of job opportunities…
NICC graduates have been instantly snapped up by industries dealing with the listed areas, and salaries are on par with those offered today by the software industry. The supply-demand equation also deeply favours these graduates as compared to other, more saturated fields. In fact, they have a range of offers to choose from, and have the luxury of being placed through the college rather than having to run from pillar to post in search of opportunity. So, far from being bleak, the future is bright indeed.
Does NICC provide any placements? The highest job offers this year and which company.
NICC has a strong placement programme. Some elite companies that have absorbed NICC students are: Canon India, R K Swamy BBDO (Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi offices), Adverto (Bangalore), Krishnaiah Chetty and Sons, The Telegraph (Ananda Bazaar Patrika), MW Corp (S. Kumar's Ltd Group), Spenta Multimedia (Mumbai), Beeswax Inc (HQ: Florida, USA).Starting salaries are in the region of 2.2 – 3.0 Lakhs plus benefits, and the careers offer excellent opportunities for further growth. Placement enquiries which our current graduating class will pursue include those from Infosys (Creative Design Division), Accenture, Orient Longman and AOL Group Companies.
What is the student strength and the student-teacher ratio at NICC?
The student-teacher ratio is approximately 8:1. NICC accepts not more than 15 students per year for the graduate programme and 10-15 for the postgraduate programmes (all specialisations inclusive). This is the factor that ensures a dedicated personalised approach to every student at NICC.
Can you tell us some prominent guest lecturers visiting the institute?
Suresh Subrahmanyan who helped shape the advertising syllabus and curriculum at NICC, and Vivin Agarwal, senior consulting faculty from National Institute of Design – Bangalore, are the two prominent guest lecturers.
What are the innovative teaching methods used at the institute?
Professional level competence in communication and design specialties requires deep immersion in theory, application and practice. This is the reason for existence of the NICC Design Studio. The Studio provides valuable hands-on experience and interaction with industry. This special division is an active, dynamic entity where live, real-time projects for clients in various industries are handled by our in-house professional team (senior faculty) as well as students who wish to participate.Some examples are worth quoting: NICC was the official design studio to forum (mall) on several occasions. All creatives including print-media and outdoor advertising, radio-jingle etc were designed by the studio.
Another example is the recently-completed project for the SKC Group. Retail design and visual merchandising are key strengths of the studio. Retail design is an area of growing and vital importance to the emerging economy of the country. This view is fully shared by NID, who spearheaded the creation of awareness of this discipline.
NICC's teaching methodology encompasses various learning processes - theory, practical application, real-time project execution and evaluation. Presentation and soft skills also play an important part in all programmes at NICC. These are specifically taught and nurtured as they are indispensable tools for professional success.
Does the institute offer any twinning programme with the universities or institutes abroad?
A truly significant achievement of this college has been the gaining of acceptance by the exclusive international club of elite educational institutes, ELIA (European league of Institutes of the Arts). This confers respect and acceptance of the NICC diploma in most European countries. Thus, NICC remains independent, but with extensive global reach. Yet another programme in partnership with The Southseas School of Film and Television, New Zealand, is a great platform and a virtually direct route to Hollywood for all serious cinema aspirants.
What are the future plans for the institute?
NICC has received many franchise offers – but that methodology is not in keeping with our objective. We hope to acquire an increasing international presence and an even wider network of industry contact to provide the broadest possible spectrum of opportunity to our students.


Most read articles

First ever shoe laundry

'The shoe laundry' has been the case-study topic for many management students. Sandeep is also the g

Mind Your language

To polish one’s English skills before that important business or study trip aborad, it is important

Creativity: a running force

Creativity has been a running force throughout my life - my mother is an artist and her mother a mus

Understanding children

Been in the field of education for 25 years, Swati Popat Vats has worked as a teacher, curriculum de

Back| Next

Most searched tags

HealthCare Journalism Photography Engineering Civil services exams Mass Media Management SCM Acting as career Bschool ranking MBA ranking Online Distance MBA Fashion and Design CAT


New Course: Design professionals should think beyond products and systems ...

Designers are equipped with the skill-set to create better processes, products and communities with a high emotional sus ...

South Ural State University and NIT Warangal work on enhancing properties of milk products ...

SUSU School of Medical Biology introduces new course on Agrobiotechnology ...

How to use online tools for better financial planning ...

A guide for millennials to utilise digital financial planning as they embark on their academic and professional journey ...

In-depth career counselling can help bridge the gap between talent, aptitude and skills ...

Choosing the right career is often a make or break decision for a student and almost always an excruciating process with ...

Back| Next