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Mr. Kumar Mangalam Birla virtually delivers IIMA’s 56th Convocation address

By Saima Siddiqui 
Updated Date

Lucknow: The Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad (IIMA), India’s foremost and globally recognised management institute held its 56 th annual convocation virtually at 12.00 p.m. today. Mr. Kumar Mangalam Birla, Chairperson, Board of Governors (BoGs), IIMA and Professor Errol D’Souza, Director, IIMA graced the occasion, as other members of the Board, faculty, staff, alumni, graduating students and their families joined the event
virtually. The ceremony was broadcasted at https://www.iima.ac.in/convocation2021/ earlier on Saturday.

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Mr. Kumar Mangalam Birla, Chairperson, BoGs, IIMA, declared opened the first virtual convocation followed by the invocation, setting the stage for a memorable graduation ceremony. Mr. Birla thereafter conferred Ph.D. titles, MBA, MBA-FABM, and MBA-PGPX degree and awarded scholastic medals. This was followed by the convocation address by Mr. Birla.

A total of 605 graduating students were conferred titles, degrees and included students from IIMA’s full-time long duration programmes, i.e. the Ph.D. Programme in Management, the Post Graduate Programme in Management (PGP), the Post Graduate Programme in Food and Agribusiness Management (FABM-MBA) and the Post Graduate Programme in Management for Executives (MBA-PGPX). The toppers from each programme were awarded gold medals in recognition of their accomplishments.

Delivering the convocation address, Mr. Birla, congratulated the graduates and said, “It is important that you have clarity on your North Star, but then be adventurous and experiment, use these experiences to build your flywheel and compliment your IQ with EQ. I don’t see IQ and EQ as binary qualities, but rather as complementary traits that make a personality wholesome You need to add other dimensions to your thinking, most importantly, of empathy and humility.

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When you look back in a few years you must ask yourself just one question. Did I make a difference? It doesn’t matter whether you are a marketer or a consultant, an entrepreneur or a techie. Have you advanced progress in your field and added to the cumulative repository of knowledge and wisdom? If the answer is yes. Then you have done justice to the education you have received and lived up to the rich legacy of this iconic institution.”

In his concluding address, Prof. Errol D’Souza, Director, IIMA, applauded the perseverance and hard work of the students and faculty in the face of the pandemic. Prof. D’Souza said, “Doing what is fair is often in conflict with showing loyalty and good citizenship behavior in organizations that the students will work in. However, in a VUCA world we require people who are just and fair.” He congratulated them for navigating choppy waters during the
challenging year at the institute and encouraged them to go out and give the best they are capable of that will be beneficial not only to their careers but also to humankind.

Despite the challenges of the ongoing pandemic, students across programme kept up their enthusiasm, giving their best in academic and extra-curricular activities. The Red Brick Summit, India’s biggest management symposium; Krishi Manthan, the largest International Food, Agribusiness and Rural Development Summit of Asia, were student led events that met with success. The student’s social wing proactively reached out to the weaker sections of the community, during the pandemic to provide financial aid, build community kitchens and facilitate safe travel for migrant workers to their hometowns.
Traditionally, the convocation ceremony at IIMA is held at the lush green lawns of the Louis Kahn Plaza, where the convocation march is led by the Chairperson and Director of IIMA along with other Board member, faculty and students assemble. This year, to comply with the government regulations on Covid-19, IIMA switched to the digital mode to hold its 56 th convocation.

Although an online function which was different in many ways, it brought alive the memories of many who studied, stayed and taught at the institute. While the graduating students, their family and friends watched the convocation ceremony from the safety of their homes remotely, the large number of faculty and staff joined the ceremony virtually from their secure offices or homes on the campus. The virtual ceremony ended with the Chairman IIMA BoGs declaring the 56 th Annual Convocation closed.

With the passing out of the students today, IIMA will have around 39,600 alumni who include, business leaders, entrepreneurs, policymakers, diplomats, academics, change makers in the social sector, artists, celebrated writers, among others.

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About IIM Ahmedabad:

The Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad (IIMA) is a premier, global management Institute that is at the forefront of promoting excellence in the field of management education. Over the 60 years of its existence, it has been acknowledged for its exemplary contributions to scholarship, practice and policy through its distinctive teaching, high- quality research, nurturing future leaders, supporting industry, government, social enterprise and creating a progressive impact on society. IIMA was founded as an innovative initiative by the Government, industry and international academia in 1961. Since then it has been consolidating its global footprint and today it has a network with over 80 top international institutions and a presence in Dubai. Its eminent
faculty members and close to 40,000 alumni, who are at the helm of influential positions in all walks of life also contribute to its global recognition.
Over the years, IIMA’s academically superior, market-driven, and socially impactful programmes, have earned high reputation and acclaim globally. It became the first Indian institution to receive international accreditation from EQUIS. The renowned flagship two- year Post Graduate Programme in Management (PGP) is ranked 20th in the FT Master in Management Ranking 2020 and the one-year Post Graduate Programme in Management for
Executives (PGPX) has been ranked 48th in the FT Global MBA rankings 2021. The institute also is placed first in the Government of India’s National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF), India Rankings 2020. IIMA offers consultancy services and more than 200 curated executive education programmes in customized, blended, and open enrolment formats for a diverse audience comprising of business leaders, policymakers, industry professionals, academicians, government officials, armed forces personnel, agri-business and other niche sector specialists and entrepreneurs. To know more about IIMA, please visit:


For media related queries, please contact:
Ms. Ishita Solanki | IIMA |Email: pr@iima.ac.in
Tanya Shandilya |Kaizzen (PR Agency)|+91 8700668026 |
Email: tanya@kaizzencomm.com & mediarelations@iima.ac.in
Ms. Priyanka Jain|Kaizzen (PR Agency) | +91 9940517127 |Email:

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