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Pune Joins The Race To Boost Innovation In Young Minds With MITID Innovation Programme


MAEER’s MITID (MIT Institute of Design) has come up with an innovation programme to promote innovation and entrepreneurship in young minds

The courses in the programme are developed in collaboration with leading industry partners and Fortune 500 companies

The applications for the programme are now open

The education system in India needs reform now more than ever to promote innovation and growth of the young minds of the country. The World Economic Forum in an article stated how India’s education system does not provide the students with the necessary skills and learnings that are needed to create and adapt to the disruption in the times ahead.

Adding to that is the fact that employers no longer want students with a broad knowledge of every topic, who they have spent months on for their training. Thanks to this, there is a definite need for the current education to have a learning-by-doing approach. Providing a solution to these issues is Pune’s Maharashtra Academy of Engineering Education and Research (MAEER).

MAEER’s MITID (MIT Institute of Design) came up with an Innovation Programme that is providing a major boost to innovation in the city. Launched in Aug 2019, MITID Innovation Programme is a one-year programme for individuals who are looking to create innovative products, tech services and build startups.

Combining design, tech, business and humanities, the programme puts students in an environment where they can come out of their comfort zones and deliver innovative solutions to solve problems in the Indian context.

Following a project-based structure, the programme works with the objective of imparting hands-on practical knowledge. The parameters to judge the students are not just grades and marks but their practical performance, the creativity of their products, and the real-world impact of their solutions.

Who Can Apply?

The MITID programme invites graduates and professionals from diverse domains and disciplines such as design, engineering, liberal arts or business management. As innovation combines all these aspects, it’s crucial that learners have well-rounded skill sets at the end of the programme.

Why Should Students Apply?

“One of the most important aspects of the programme is that the innovation courses are taught by industry professionals and entrepreneurs themselves. The industry participation is at all levels of the programme and hence by the time students complete the programme they are fully aligned with the industry realities and requirements,” Harshit Desai, programme head, innovation programme, MITID, told Inc42.

  • Access to various courses, workshops, boot camps, research trips and more
  • Opportunity to work on projects based on various themes and interact with people from relevant industries
  • Continuous guidance and mentorship from stalwarts of the industry
  • Ownership of projects and work in teams to deliver impactful and innovative solutions
Apply Now

Structure And Curriculum Details Of The Programme

Developed by a team of young innovators along with experienced industry and academic professionals, the programme looks to help learners believe that innovation is a cognitive activity and requires one to shift from a conventional way of thinking to a mindset that believes in experimentation. In line with that, the focus of the structure is on the hands-on experience of the students.

Innovation Mindshift

This is a one-week orientation programme for students, where they are taken through various team-building and mind-mapping exercises, with the aim of opening them up to new people and new ways of thinking. For two days, the students are taken on excursions and off-site visits, where trainers conduct exercises to build these crucial skills.

Further to that, the students are also taken on tours to successful and innovative companies where they can attend sessions with founders and learn to execute their idea.

Project 0: Dashlessdash

This is a module is designed to help the students open up to different ways of thinking and challenges students to think out-of-the-box. They are exposed to concepts such as first principles thinking, abductive reasoning, creative thinking and more that push them to challenge existing notions. The students work in groups and are provided different problems or questions which they need to answer through innovative solutions.

Project 1: Human-Centred Impact

This project aims to introduce students to the principles, methods and processes of human-centred business design. “Design thinking, problem-solving skills and quick iterative solution building are some of the most essential skills for professionals today. This project gives the students an opportunity to find real-world problems that are worth solving and exposes them to a wide canvas of opportunities,” said Nachiket Thakur, programme mentor and core faculty, innovation programme, MITID.

Done in Bootcamp mode, the solutions go through various stages of iteration before students finally propose a business model or innovation pitch.

Project 2: World 4.0

This project helps students understand and execute trend forecasting. Students are posed two basic questions to answer through innovation — ‘What would the world look like in the future?’ and ‘What solutions, products or services would exist in the future?’

It builds on the existing concept of Industry 4.0 and takes it to the next level where the students get an opportunity to create interesting futuristic scenarios and experiment with multiple possibilities. And through this, it exposes them to concepts such as speculative design, critical design and design fiction.

Project 3: Making With Digits

During this project, students get access to a high-end state-of-the-art design and tech lab equipped with the latest tools and pieces of equipment. With that, they get inputs and mentoring on AI, ML, 3D Printing, IoT, AR, VR, Blockchain, Data Science and more. The focus of this project is more on the digital and physical design and development.

Major Project

Finally, students are taken through the ultimate objective of the course. Here, they work either solo or in groups of two to come up with a major project that applies everything that they have learnt so far.

The topics and themes for the project are set according to industry requirements and the specific talents of each student or group.

“The project is a natural culmination of the programme and is an opportunity for the students to collaborate with the industry. MITID has a wide industry network and some of the leading Innovation Labs have already shown interest to engage with the students. The students will propose their ideas to the companies, based on which the companies will select the students to collaborate on their live projects,” Desai told us.

Apply Now

The Faculty, Industry Connect Of The Programme

MITID has roped in many tech professionals, young entrepreneurs and experienced industry leaders to provide the students with the right mentorship and guidance in their projects.

Industry Connect

Having strong industry connect, MITID has brought in many industry giants for the benefit of its students. These companies are associated at various levels and collaborate on multiple fronts such as internships, live projects, mentoring student projects, conduct workshops and sessions and more. Some of these companies include:

  • Accenture
  • Microsoft
  • Deloitte Digital
  • Fjord
  • NLP Bolts
  • Strategy Forward
  • Turian Design Labs
  • Amdocs
  • PwC
  • Capgemini
  • Mahindra
  • Saint- Gobain
  • Groupe Atlantic
  • Tata Group

Mentors And Facilitators

To address its goal, MITID set up a core team that comprised of young innovators, designers and technologists to develop the innovation course structure and content.

This team comprises of global professionals that includes alumnus of Royal College of Art (RCA) London UK, Copenhagen Institute of Interaction Design (CIID), Denmark, Ashoka University YIF, and Stanford Bio-Design Fellowship and Stanford Graduate School of Business.

These names are also acting as mentors and facilitators for the programme. Some of the prominent names are:

  • Manoj Kothari, cofounder and chief design strategist, Turian Labs (Alumni of IIT- Mumbai & National Institute of Design)
  • Pushkar Ingale, founder and design director, Cohesive Labs (Alumni of Stanford Bio-Design Fellowship)
  • Praveen Juyal, founder and CEO, Strategy Forward Consulting (Alumni of CIID)
  • Ritika Karnani- Independent Design Consultant (Alumni of RCA)
  • Karishma Mishra- VP- Design Strategy- Strategy Forward Consulting
  • Niyoshi Shah- Research Assistant at Centre for Mental Health Law & Policy (Alumni of RCA)

The programme is currently accepting applications. Apply now before all the slots are full.

Apply Now
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