Ramakrishna Mission Vivekananda University is a humble attempt to put into practice Swami Vivekananda’s fundamental educational ideas of imparting life-building, man-making and character-building education by combining the best elements of the East and the West. He envisioned an educational system wherein the rich cultural and spiritual heritage of our country with its hoary tradition of values like sacredness of knowledge, shraddha, devotion to truth, etc., would be blended with modern science, and predominantly Western values like scientific temper, rationality of outlook, fearless and objective investigation into the nature of the physical world, technological skill, work efficiency, team work, etc.
For Swami Vivekananda, the “proper type of education’ meant ‘man-making’, ‘character-building’ education and not merely storing information in the brain that would have no connexion with life. How is such education to be given? By the gurukula system, in which students are to live as family members, with teachers of sterling character, possessing tangible spirituality. But gurukulas could not be started in numbers all at once, for proper funds and skilled teachers were necessary.
The aim of the institution is to provide opportunities for education and research in the disciplines of arts, sciences and spiritual studies. Arts will include humanities and social sciences; sciences will include fundamental as well as applied sciences of all categories including technology and engineering. Spiritual studies will comprise moral, ethical and value education including comparative religious studies in their broadest form to show the underlying harmony. The supplementary and interdependent character of these three disciplines will receive special emphasis in this University. Value education will therefore be an essential component in all the courses.
Apart from our degree programs in arts, sciences, and spiritual studies, we offer two types of courses. First, we offer professional development courses, need-based and job-oriented, aimed essentially at addressing the masses and marginalized sections of the society—courses that would, in large measure, enable them to give themselves the jobs they seek rather than seek jobs from others and, in the words of Swami Vivekananda, “to enable them to stand on their own feet.” Second, we offer culturally, morally and ethically enriching value-oriented courses aimed at addressing all the stakeholders in the field of education, including parents.
Eventually, Vivekananda University will expand its scope by moving into new and emerging fields like biotechnology, nano-science and nano-technology, bio-informatics, microbiology, information and communication science and technology etc, while keeping the original vision intact.