HRMI reveals its first-ever program for Individual Student Development Plans

Friday, 30 August 2013 00:00 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

In order to facilitate students’ career and professional advancement, HRMI has embarked on a structured and systematic methodology to support student total development. Every student will be required to develop an Individual Development Plan (IDP) which will help achievement of academic and professional goals as well as personal aspirations, value inculcation and character education. Students will be guided by experienced and qualified counsellors and coaches to identify goals, assess strengths and weaknesses, and define academic accomplishments and professional skills necessary to excel in their career pathways. Top universities in US and UK have been providing such support and guidance to students to enable them to achieve their goals and aspirations as an integral component in the student progression strategies. Though this is the first time such initiative is institutionalised in Sri Lanka by HRMI, it has been in practice over the last 10 years in leading universities in US and UK. An HRMI spokesperson commented that the extreme commercialisation of the education sector in Sri Lanka has resulted in educational institutions overlooking the holistic aspect of student development and merely turning into ‘mills’ producing young person’s sans character, competence and aptitude required of a professional. At HRMI, every student will be required to develop a ‘Personal and Professional Development Plan’ which will include identification of career goals, an analysis of strengths and weaknesses, strategies and action plans to bridge ‘gaps’, character and value development initiatives. In addition students will have an opportunity to do a psychometric analysis to understand individual personality and preferences and associated corrective behaviours. An IDP serves as a strategic plan, not only for a student during his or her student days, but also for continued educational and professional advancement. It can provide the motivation and serve as a roadmap to success by establishing realistic goals, strategies, milestones, and timelines to reach those goals. An IDP requires ongoing evaluation and assessment, thus it is a dynamic document that is regularly reviewed and updated. Individual professional development plans have been used in the corporate arena for a very long time. They are part of Performance Appraisal systems that are used to provide feedback and to set goals for individual employees. In recent years, IDPs have become an integral part of academic training in an effort to help prepare students for their next steps and future careers. HRMI provides a seamless pathway for young school leavers with O/Ls and A/L qualifications to progress to Diplomas, Bachelors and Masters Degrees. HRMI faculty comprises of Sri Lanka’s best known HR and management professionals and academics who have excelled in their respective fields. All HRMI programs are linked to Edexcel UK qualifications and therefore students can earn globally recognised and respected British qualifications. HRMI Director Gihan Talgodapitiya, briefing the media reasoned out why HRMI has engaged the country’s top-most resource persons to be on the faculty. He said: “Edexcel Qualifications are evaluated on the basis of students attaining a high standard of professionalism in the assignments and projects they are required to submit. Students need to learn modern management concepts and how they could apply them at work. In order to facilitate this learning, the faculty must be qualified and exposed to contemporary management practices. Unless the faculty has the exposure to new concepts and management practices, students will not be able to live up to the high standards of expectations set by the UK evaluators.” He further stated that every lecturer has been hand-picked and invited to be on the faculty as they have the exposure at the highest level. Our faculty comprises of top-professionals who have been with Sri Lanka’s best known companies including John Keells, Aitken Spence, Hayleys, MAS, Unilever, Glaxo SmithKline, Commercial Bank and Standard Chartered Bank to name a few. HRMI students are provided with a well structured internship training program over a period of six months. During this internship, they gain a first-hand exposure to the systems and practices adopted in good companies and thereafter placed in employment. The Director went on to say, “Unlike in the past, today HR managers play a vital role in the survival and growth of a business. It is a core function and a major strategy for any organisation. Therefore we now need to train the next generation in a manner that they can cope-up with any job, be it in Sri Lanka or elsewhere in the world.” HRMI programs can be seen at