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Dr. Vijay Kumar

1975 - BTech - Chemical Engineering & 1978 - MS - Industrial Management Senior Associate Dean & Director @ MIT

Dr. Vijay Kumar received his B.Tech. Degree in Chemical Engineering in 1975, and his M.S. degree in Industrial Management in 1978, both from IIT Madras. After a brief career in management consulting in India, he joined the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and received his Ed.D. degree in 1986. His dissertation topic was: Introducing Technological Innovations for Education in Developing Countries – Implications for Planning. The following 24 years speaks for Vijay’s distinguished career and accomplishments in this endeavor.

He is currently Senior Associate Dean and Director of the Office of Educational Innovation and Technology at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). His work at MIT is helping to redefine the relationship between universities and society. In 1996, Vijay was appointed as the Principal Investigator of MIT’s Open Knowledge Initiative, an MIT-led collaborative project to develop an open architecture for enterprise educational applications. He is a key member of the Advisory Committee of MIT OpenCourseware, the pioneering initiative that has put every classroom lecture in every subject taught at MIT on the worldwide web. OpenCourseware aggregates the knowledge of one of the world’s great universities and makes it available to students anywhere on our planet.

Before joining MIT, Vijay worked as Director of Academic Computing and Assistant Professor of Computer Applications (1987-1991) at the University of Maine at Machias, and as Director of Academic Computing at Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley, Massachusetts (1991-1996). The focus of Vijay’s entire career has been the intersection of education and technology, and specifically, initiatives that use technological innovations to positively transform the educational experience, making it easier and cheaper to share knowledge among institutions and across national borders.

His expertise in this area is globally acknowledged. Among many notable contributions, he has been an Advisor to the National Knowledge Commission, India, since 2006. He has advised numerous leading educational institutions and governments in the United States, Latin America, Europe and Asia. He was appointed as an Advisor for IT to the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD) in 2010.

Vijay has never been a distant ivory-tower academic. For forty years, he has remained good-humored and ever accessible. He is generous with his time and expertise, and wears his numerous accomplishments lightly. Of him, it can be truly said: Vidya dadaati vinayam Learning bestows humility’.

In recognition of Dr. Vijay Kumar’s excellence in technology innovation for education, academics and managerial practices, IIT Madras and its alumni are proud to confer on him this award.

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