In a first, IIM-Kozhikode creates 60 women-only post-graduate course seats

Students in IIM-Ahmedabad campus
The Indian Institute of Management Kozhikode is set to become the first among IIMs to allot 60 additional seats in its post-graduate programme (PGP) exclusively for women. These 60 women-only seats will be effective from the next academic year, the Economic Times reported. 

With this move, IIM Kozhikode becomes the first IIM to follow the footsteps of IITs that have created an additional 800 supernumerary seats in 2018. This step was taken according to the directives of the HRD ministry, in a move to improve the low gender ratio across its various campuses.  

 
According to the ET report, IIM Kozhikode's move to increase the number of seats in the PGP is to boost gender diversity. The reason behind this decision is being attributed to the falling percentage of women candidates joining IIM Kozhikode since 2013. In 2013, this institute had set a record of admitting more than 54% in its PGP course. Now, the representation of women has dwindled to 26%. 

Though the IIMs have been trying to include more women in their classrooms, these top B-schools paint a stark picture of gender disparity. The ratio of male candidates to female candidates in the IIMs keep changing every year, but remains low. 

According to a report by the Hindustan Times, in 2014, women accounted for only 23.3% of the student population at IIM Bangalore. In 2013 batch, the figure was 23% at IIM Calcutta. 

IIM-Kozhikode Director Professor Debashis Chatterjee was quoted by ET saying, " CAT (common admission test) scores will be factored in, but the admission lens will be broader than the conventional ones. Beyond number-crunchers, we want women from creative fields, authors, captains of national teams, etc. We want to make it multi-dimensional,” 

This move lies in line with global institutes which not only look at academic excellence, but also extraordinary achievements in other fields are also taken into consideration.

According to the HT report, Janat Shah, director of IIM-Udaipur says the aim is, for at least a third of the student to be women. 

Former director of IIM-Rohtak, however, says the trouble begins with a low representation of women at the CAT stage. CAT exam is heavy on quantitative aptitude favours engineers and there are fewer girls studying engineering. Consequently, fewer women take the CAT and even fewer women join B-Schools.

IIM Kozhikode is yet to finalise the details of the proposal, but aims to introduce it in the next academic year. Other IIMs however, may not immediately follow IIM Kozhikode's footsteps in setting aside supernumerary seats for women, they too are mulling over ways to increase female participation.

Outbrain