Experiential Learning at Symbiosis School of Banking and Finance

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Experiential Learning provides a holistic model of the learning process which is consistent with what we know about how people learn, grow, and develop. It immerses learners in an experience and then encourages reflection about the experience to develop new skills/knowledge/attitudes. Similar suggestions was given by Gandhijis for our education system by the way of Nai Talim.

At Symbiosis School of Banking and Finance, we believe in the importance of experiential learning and it is part of our program at multiple places. We provide in-campus experiential learning opportunities in the form of providing access to Bloomberg Lab, using case studies, simulation, and role play etc Whereas, for experiential learning from the field, we have Summer Internship, Field Project etc.

Idea of field project is to expose students about the role and performance of development and microfinance institutions in the rural finance, and to make them understand the need of women empowerment and initiatives taken by various stakeholders.

As a part of field project, this year, we took our students to the BAIF Development Research Foundation’s operational area at Jawhar and Peth taluka of Thane and Nashik districts respectively. The topics that we covered, included the Wadi Project, Farmer Producer Organization, Vegetable cultivation, Floriculture, SHG Members/Microfinance, Indigenous crop seeds conservation and production and Rural Tourism.

During the four days of visit (from 3rd to 6th September), students saw various activities being done by BAIF in villages, where they were successful in helping the farmers to create a sustainable livelihood for themselves. Students had the opportunity to interact with the various officials working with BAIF as well as the beneficiaries of the program. The visit not only gave firsthand experience of relating the concepts under academic discussion in the class like Microfinance but also sensitized the students about the socio-economic issues prevalent in the rural area.

Field visit to Peth was a fruitful and an enriching experience of me. It not only help me make aware of the issues faced by people in rural area but also help me understand the need for creation of sustainable living for the people in the rural belt around India. Visits like these should be discussed and arranged by giving utmost importance as they sensitize the students about the condition of people by leaps and bounds which is incidental in ensuring a better and well understood future. This visit in particular made me appreciate life even better, help me understand the plight of people of Peth.

The field visit that we had in Jawhar was exhilarating and for me was one that has struck a cord in me. It helped me understand the hardships that people have had to go through in the past to meet their basic necessities and how the need for creation of a sustainable livelihood for them came up. On interacting with the farmers and the SHG workers made me understand that happiness is something that can be found in every nook and corner of life provided you have the strength and determination to find it. One particular memory that has latched itself onto me was the interactions with the SHG workers. Their happiness and pride regarding their work was a sight to behold. Such visits should be organized more often