Many Species, One Planet, One Future

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Close on the heels of world environment day, one cant help but notice the wide range of disasters that are raging on at different places across the globe. Some of them are man made and others are Mother Nature’s fury which is also caused inevitably by mankind. Whether it is the BP oil spill in US, the raging floods in China or the devastating landslides in Poland, the list just seems to swell with unabashed severity as each year passes by. The future is there for all to see. Unless we mend our ways and take immediate corrective actions we either perish off our own accord or Mother Nature chooses to send us all into oblivion in her own devilish ways. Today we have reached the crossroads of nature whereby half measures and selective action is not enough to undo the damage done. The change has to encompass all the strata’s of the society. The yawning gap between the top most segment of a society and its lowest residents always poses a big challenge in this regard. So how do we spread the awareness? How do we start the change from the grass root level? The answer lies in one of the most potent tools of humanity that dates back to almost the existence of life itself. It is through education. Education has the power to unite and create awareness about almost anything in life. So when its time to save all living species for one better planet and a better future, education stands as the most trustworthy tool. Starting from elementary stages and going straight to the higher levels, studying about environment and practising to keep it safe, is the need of the hour. Higher education has even a bigger responsibility. Higher education institutes can be the best agents of change as they can involve communities from ground zero, not only by educating the next generation of environmentalists but also through sharing their knowledge and skills with community-based organizations and local governments. But here comes another practical problem. In India alone how do we educate a population of half a billion teenagers when the state machinery itself does not have the adequate resources? The answer is through distance education. Distance education is without barriers, time or space and involves no economic constraints. In India itself we have pioneers in this field namely Sikkim Manipal University- Distance Education Programme, Symbiosis Institute and IGNOU. Of these top 3, Sikkim Manipal University reaches across 310 towns in the country and has more than 3 lakh students on its rolls. The statistics indicate the power of distance education and is a role model for others to follow. To top it all, Sikkim Manipal University along with Indian Institute of Ecology and Environment, New Delhi (IIEE) offers a host of courses on ecology and environment conservation. The planet is not only a home to us. Even before the birth of humankind it has been a home to scores of flora and fauna. All along we have co-existed and depended on each other for mutual existence. Today our actions have not just threatened our existence but everyone else’s who are suffering due to our actions. In our goal towards one future, it is thus upon us humans to act and make this one planet a better place to live in. About Manipal Education Manipal Education is a pioneering and leading academic services provider in India. With over 50 years in the field of education, the group provides education services across all genres. The group’s presence includes 3 universities - Manipal University, Sikkim Manipal University, and American University of Antigua and over 30 institutions in India, besides colleges & campuses in Antigua, Dubai, Malaysia & Nepal. Sikkim Manipal University is a unique public-private initiative between the Govt. of Sikkim and Manipal Education. SMU, a state University, is recognized by the UGC, Ministry of HRD and is a member of the Associations of Indian Universities. The Distance Education Council has granted recognition to all Distance Education programs offered under the aegis of SMU (Sikkim Manipal University). The SMU Directorate of Distance Education is ISO 9001:2000 certified. In addition to formal university programmes delivered through 5 campuses in India & 4 overseas, Manipal Education also offers Distance Education, Professional & Skills Education across multiple genres. SMU-DE is recognised & appreciated by students for its efficient processes like prompt delivery of study materials to students, EduNxt initiative, conduct of scheduled examinations, on-time declaration of results & swift dispatch of certificates & degrees. Our students number of more than 3,00,000 across 52 countries points to the success of our program. For further information just visit or or call 1800 266 7979 toll free.

SMUDE (talk)22:41, 24 June 2010