The Indian Institute of Management Kozhikode made history on Sunday with the largest — ever — percentage of women graduating from any top school for business in India. More than half of the post graduate degree holders—around 200 of the 348 students—were women.
The best all-round performer as well as both the second and third rank holders were also awarded to women.
"Today when there are only few women in top positions, we believe tomorrow we all will rise to be the CEOs of various companies," said one of the graduating students Ankita Pai in an NDTV interview.
This particular IIM's enrolment of women students has been especially significant, which has steadily risen since 2010. From almost a third of the students comprising of women five years ago, the number now stands at 55 percent with this year's graduating class. It had set a national record in 2013 when students of this year's graduating class in the post graduate program was the first one in any IIM to have a majority of women.
The college administration attributes this to searching beyond usual admission factors like CAT scores. "When you look at elements beyond CAT, group discussions and interviews--like consistency of academic performance from SSC level, performance beyond academics or experience--that's where you start seeing diversity appear," said Dean for Academics Keyoor Purani.
The male students welcomed the majority of women in their class. One student said that he has learnt to be more gender sensitive, which will work to his advantage in his career, and help him advance in the corporate world.
"To learn when to talk and when not to and all of this will be to my advantage as I join the corporate world--where gender sensitivity with performance is a key factor," said graduating student Harsh Yadav.
All students were offered jobs within 10 days during campus placements, with an average salary of Rs14.92 lakh per annum. This is a rise of 38 percent from last year, reported The Times of India.
Some of this can be attributed to the large number of women in the graduating class, said Prof Saji Gopinath, dean, academic at IIM-K, as more companies were looking to hire women across management levels.