Free Press Journal

The Free Press Journal and HEF Scholarship Awards presented: All you need to know

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Winners of FPJ and HEF Scholarship Awards along with dignitaries related to the field of education

The eighth annual THE FREE PRESS JOURNAL Management Scholarships and the fourth annual Higher Education Forum Scholarships were awarded to deserving winners on November 11.

Mumbai: Every year November 11 is celebrated as National Education Day to honour, appreciate and enhance the importance of education in the country. For eight years around the same time, the Free Press Journal (FPJ) Management Scholarships were awarded to deserving and needy students along with the Higher Education Forum (HEF) scholarships at IEIBS Akademia at Thane.

The FPJ Management Scholarships was set up in association with HEF as part of its initiative to encourage education and an effort to provide a platform for interested students. In the same spirit, the HEF also established the HEF Scholarship to provide financial impetus to some motivated students.


A total of 24 awards were given away this year wherein 12 students were awarded the FPJ Management Scholarship, five female students were honoured in the HEF scholarship category; five students were awarded for their exemplary performance in the essay writing competition; and two entrepreneurs were awarded for their excellence in business entrepreneurship. This entrepreneurship award has been initiated by HEF in the name of Sri Pralhad P. Chhabria Memorial Award for Entrepreneurship instituted by Professor Aruna Katara, President I²IT, Pune, in the memory of her (late) father, Shri Pralhad P Chhabria, Founder Chairman of Finolex Group of Industries.

Post the national anthem, Nilesh Sarawate, CEO of IEIBS Akademia welcomed all the students and educationists. Sarawate said, “HEF is a forum to create and exchange ideas. It helps students grow and provides them a platform through such scholarships and awards for academic excellence.” While Dr. A. K. Sen Gupta, Founder and Convener of HEF, drew light on the history of the awards, contributors, donors, initiators and beneficiaries. Gupta highlighted around 80 to 90 students have been supported in the last eight years of these awards and scholarships. Gupta said, “HEF is completely based on voluntary work as it is a forum of individuals. We are trying to empower India by encouraging education as the only key to success in a developing nation.”

Dignitaries come together on the dias after the awards

Gupta further added, “We are contributing to the dream of creating successful individuals out of students for they are the future of our country. Through these awards we are providing opportunities and creating a platform for growth for all deserving students.” Focussing on the importance of education, he said, “I am grateful for the support of a lot of people who have helped us in this journey. Education is the basic need and it is only through education that transformation can be brought in.”

An educationist, Dr Sanjay Muthal stated students need encouragement to perform better. He said, “Awards, scholarships and recognition can work as catalysts to spur encouragement in students. Students ought to embrace opportunities to learn new things, gain new experiences and become successful. Education is the stumbling block of learning.” While Dr Kondap, said, “A relationship with HEF is inseparable. The forum is meant to walk hand in hand with education, learning, students, teachers and educationists.”

The FPJ has been instrumental in encouraging the growth of education. Abhishek Karnani, Director of FPJ, said, “Students need to keep few things in mind that success is within. It is a road not destiny. Students will find success once they chose the path and start working towards it. It is important for students to celebrate themselves in terms of learning, opportunities and experiences in order to enjoy this road of success.”

Six students were awarded by HEF for their impeccable performance in the Essay Writing Competition 2017. The first place was shared by Hiral Rathva and Rathva Shaku from Royale International School of Nursing, Vadodara; second place was secured by Swadha Maheshwari of the Indian School of Management and Entrepreneurship, Mumbai; and the third place was secured by Mangesh Pande of ITM, Navi Mumbai. While the consolation prizes were awarded to Himanshu Badlani of C K Shah Vijapurwala Institute of Management, Vadodara and Rucha Hardikar of Finolex Academy of Management and Technology, Ratnagiri.

While the entrepreneurship awards were bagged by Rahul Bhatnagar who is the Founder of Uprist Service Portal Private Ltd and Gaurav Kothari who is the Founder of Mangal Entertainment. Both the awardees have built their career by initiating their own business in the form of start-ups. These awardees were recognised for their contribution to the finance and management field as a form of encouragement for the students who are keen about entrepreneurship programmes and original ideas.

Both students and parents expressed their gratitude as they were felicitated with the awards, certificates and scholarships. The event was attended by over 100 delegates comprising mainly of educationists, faculty and students from various institutions. The event was graced by the presence of dignitaries like Professor Aruna Katara, President I²IT, Pune; Dr. N M Kondap, Director General – Rajasthani Sammelan’s Deviprasad Goenka Management College of Media Studies and Durgadevi Saraf Institute of Management Studies; Dr. Sanjay Muthal, Executive Director, RGF Executive Search; D Bigyan Verma, Director of Guru Nanak Institute of Management Studies; and Dr. Dinesh Harsolekar, Director, IES Management College and Research Centre.