India to get its first post-graduate school of strategic communications

The school will be a centre of education and research focused on Public Relations, Corporate Communications and Political Communications.

Feb 26, 2015 11:02 IST India Infoline News Service

The Indian School of Communications and Reputation (SCoRe) is being established in Gurgaon. It will be India’s first post-graduate school dedicated to strategic communications and reputation management. The school plans to expand in the future in two other key metros. The school will be a centre of education and research focused on Public Relations, Corporate Communications and Political Communications. The vision is to be the best school for those who want to make a mark in the field of strategic communications. SCoRe will offer a Post-Graduate Diploma in Strategic Communications with two specialisations – Political and Corporate.

The school will be led by a team of young and dynamic professionals with Amith Prabhu as its Founding Dean. NS Rajan, Global Partner and Managing Director of Ketchum Sampark will be the Chief Mentor to the Founding Team. The establishment of the school is the brainchild of communications professionals and veterans who have long felt the need for a school that offers a practice-oriented programme for graduates entering the profession. SCoRe will offer two post-graduate diploma programmes in Strategic Corporate Communications and Strategic Political Communications of a 10 month duration. The programme will also offer fresh graduates an internship of up to four months outside of the classroom training.

Announcing the launch of SCoRe, Amith Prabhu, Founding Dean said, “The professional community, both in consultancies and in-house have always felt the need for high caliber talent at all levels. If the foundation is strong, good managers and great leaders emerge. As strategic communications becomes pivotal to the success of organisations it is important to have well-rounded talent”. He added, “SCoRE hopes to offer a robust learning opportunity for students who want to build a career in communications. It also aims to become the fountain head from where organisations can hire smart talent.”

SCoRe will have an Advisory Board and an Academic Council comprising eminent global and India PR professionals that will work closely with the Founding Team to bring the best-in-class curriculum to life. The programme is built around a pedagogy that has four Centres of Excellence. In simpler terms, this means the syllabus is designed to offer the best of all worlds that a communications professional needs to be equipped with, for a rapidly changing political and business environment. The Centres of Excellence are: Reputation Management, General Studies, Strategic Communications and Allied Learning. The fifth Centre of Excellence focused on Executive Education will open later in the year to offer programmes to existing professionals.

NS Rajan, the Chief Mentor said, “Strategic communications is emerging as an important discipline. Institutes offering high quality education at an affordable fee is the need of the hour, both for hiring organisations and for those aspiring for a career in Public Relations. It is paramount that fellow professionals come together to create a world-class programme for the future of this profession in India. I am delighted to be associated with this project and give back to the profession in some measure the joy and fulfillment it has given me".

The ten-month programme is divided into four terms. The first three terms of three-month duration each, will be intense and run back-to-back from July to March, with sessions running on six days of the week, full-time. Each session will be of 90 minutes duration and each term will have upto 350 sessions which includes a mix of classroom input and workshops that are built around case studies. This is followed by a break for summer internship of four months. The school will assist in one internship per student in a PR firm, or a corporate house or the office of an elected political leader. However, students have the choice to secure a second internship and do two internships of two months each. On completion of the summer internship students will focus on the fourth term, which will be 50 hours in total and will be held either in the evenings or on weekends.

Political Communications and Public Affairs is an important area which will be in high demand in the years ahead. This is an area the school will tap into in order to create future professionals that the evolved politician will want on his or her team.

The three-step admission process commences on February 25th where interested candidates may visit the school website to fill an online application form and pay the application fee. The proctored online entrance test will take place on April 26th and the personal interviews will be held between May 1st and 4th in four cities (New Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and Gurgaon). The programme commences on July 1st 2015. The fees for the programme is Rs Four Lakh.

Amith Prabhu, the Founding Dean is a native reputation management professional with over ten years of experience having worked both in leading consultancies and in-house. He spent two years of his career at a global consultancy in Chicago. Prior to that he has lived and worked in Gurgaon, Bangalore and Mumbai. He holds a Masters in Communications Management. He writes India’s only weekly column on the profession, a collection of which was published as a book titled “Taking Pride’. He was chosen as the Indian PR Professional of the Year in 2014. He currently runs a political communications consulting firm that advises Indian politicians on how to make the most out of the power to connect.

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