The Terrorist Outside School

“The only thing that can fight terrorism is education,” – Malala Yousafzai

An overwhelming amount of discourse today revolves around one central threat to humanity. It’s not climate change (not yet anyway), it’s not economic (it may soon be), but it’s more raw and out there.

It’s terrorism. And more disturbingly, the involvement of youth in terrorism.

Our reaction to terrorism is as sudden and explosive as its impact. Combative, incendiary and shall I daresay myopic. While the problem remains myriad and ever-mutating—one of the fundamental reasons for its rise, is the lack of education and empathy.

To alleviate this, disempowered youth should be provided with education and sensitized to a multicultural world. Only then can we begin to see a rise of a generation that is both tolerant for diversity as well as respectful for life.

A stellar example of using education against the seductive forces of terrorism is Prof Dr Mukti Mishra. He is the Co-founder and President of Centurion University of Technology and Management—the first and only privately managed university in the tribal area of Odisha.

What’s interesting is that Centurion University has embarked on a challenge: Making 100,000 tribal youth employable and deployable by 2020. The challenge has greater significance because these youth pick up guns when they have no alternative means for employment.

Prof Mishra has had a brilliant track record both as student and teacher. After a brilliant career in the corporate sector with Fortune 500 companies, for 15 years, Prof Mishra gravitated to teaching. He taught at business schools across Africa, Australia, China, India, Malaysia, and Singapore.

The genius in Prof Mishra felt restricted with the boundaries of academic teaching. He had a larger dream. His first step was to acquire an ailing engineering institute, the Jagannath Institute for Technology and Management, and thereafter to transform it into Centurion University of Technology and Management.

He has also created social entrepreneurial outreach entities under the banner Gram Tarang. These entities work directly with communities and link the underprivileged regions to the mainstream market.

Prof Mishra was our Qimpro Gold Standard – Education for 2014 and we are proud to recognize his selfless service to humanity.

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