The Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (IIT Bombay) established its first woman faculty chair with the sponsorship by Amit Dixit, Blackstone’s Head of Asia for Private Equity. The chair, named “The Amit Dixit Chair,” has been created through Dixit’s generous contribution to support the Institute in its efforts to honor outstanding women faculty members. It is a critical step toward recognizing women leaders in academia who can serve as role models for aspiring students.
Dixit’s donation will also support the Student Mentorship Program’s recruiting initiatives to attract women applicants to IIT Bombay. Mr. Dixit is an alumnus of IIT Bombay’s Civil Engineering Department, Class of 1995. He graduated at the top of his program and received the Institute’s Silver Medal for outstanding work in his discipline.
Speaking on the occasion, Dixit opined: “India has risen to global prominence for its strong talent pool particularly in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) disciplines. IIT Bombay and its alumni have created a large impact on the global technology industry. It is increasingly important to promote diversity and support women so they have the opportunity to secure global leadership positions.”
“At Blackstone, we firmly believe that a diverse and inclusive workforce builds better businesses. I hope this new position can inspire faculty and students and widen the funnel to develop women leaders in technology. I’m thrilled to return to IIT Bombay and help steer its diversity efforts,” further said Dixit.
According to data published by the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India, women comprised only 14% of India’s STEM workforce in research and development in the 2017-18 period.
Professor Subhasis Chaudhuri, Director, IIT Bombay, said: “As one of the leading academic institutions in India, we are proud to take the lead in raising awareness of the importance of women leaders with the support of Mr. Amit Dixit.
The government has also played an instrumental role in our diversity efforts, introducing the supernumerary quota for women in IITs. This has helped increase the admission of women from just 8% in 2016 to 18% in 2020. However, there’s always room to do more.”
“We are grateful to Mr. Dixit for his generous contribution, which has laid the groundwork for change and set an example for others in the education sector,” added Chaudhury.