Dr. Usha Manjunath


Revolutionizing the Health Education Sector

Women are shaping tomorrow’s future and leaving no stone unturned when it comes to holding a position of leadership. They are pursuing the things they want and seizing the opportunities that come before them. Today, India has more women in Leadership roles than several countries, and fortunately, this trend is being taken forward by capable women leaders such as Dr. Usha Manjunath. Driving on her educational background and unique experience in the field of allied health and disability, Dr. Usha operates as the current Director and a Professor of Institute of Health Management Research (IIHMR), Bangalore, progressing each day towards giving back to society – quality professionals of tomorrow, who have strong academic and research credentials credited to their names.

Having started her career as a speech and hearing specialist, Dr. Usha along with her immense passion towards the field of healthcare and its services, also believes that she can strongly associate with the fields of communication, entrepreneurship, management, and thereby, her long list of degrees, including a Ph.D. from BITS Pilani, shows her real dedication towards education. Starting her career in an integrated school meant for hearing impaired children in Bengaluru, she got certified as a Speech Pathologist in the US where she worked for a considerable amount of time. She returned to India in 1992, and joined BITS Pilani thereafter, as a faculty of Psychology, Technical and Business Communication, and established herself in the field of Health System Management academics and research

A dynamic teacher and a thoughtful guide, Dr. Usha has also worked as a trainer in her elaborate 25+ years of experience, and clearly, her experience guides her in her responsibilities every day at IIHMR, Bangalore, where she is the main person in-charge of all core areas of operations and administration. Apart from serving the management academia, she has worked in various organizations including NGOs, schools, Hospitals, in India and USA. She is adept at training and has undertaken MDPs for different stakeholders in her area of expertise, and she is also, quite thorough in a variety of platforms, such as – live-physical, on-line and hybrid modalities.

A change-maker of our society

Dr. Usha’s research work includes Total Quality Service Management Model for Healthcare, nutrition-health-life cycle approach, IEC pre-testing, MCH, WASH, Women Empowerment, Health, Stress Management etc. Her research strengths are in field work, mixed methodology approach for field and organization research, writing of reports, manuscripts, research briefs, and content writing. Her incredible writing and editing skills have pushed her towards authoring many articles and publications in renowned national and international journals, as well as in media publications. As a result of her editorial excellence, she was conferred with ‘Outstanding Editor’ award by AIMS International. She is a proud recipient of the Bharat Rathna Indira Gandhi Gold Medal Award, by GEPRA, New Delhi, which was awarded to her on March 8th, 2018. She has authored a book, called – “Total Quality in Healthcare-An Empirical Investigation” in 2012, under Rawat Publications.
“I like to take up volunteering whenever time permits and I feel socially responsible in mobilizing and supporting children with disabilities”, shares Dr. Usha Manjunath, talking to us about her real-calling – social work. Elaborating on her above point she stated – “I have worked towards getting a Global Grant application to Rotary International and Local Rotary Club (Matching Grant) for BDT Deaf School for strengthening education through technology including Hearing Aids, Audio-visual Lab, Smart Classrooms, Audiometry Set Up, and STEM Mini Lab”.

Talking in depth about how Dr. Usha ensured quality education at IIHMR, Bangalore, despite a global pandemic knocking on our door steps, she stated – “We did have challenges to overcome, but in a very good fashion, we proved to be more functional and efficient during the pandemic, and our seat limit increased from 60 to 120, as we managed to do really well in digital aspects and run hybrid classes with ease”. Moreover, as a vital personality of IIHMR, Bangalore, she was at the forefront of change, and made sure that students get a lot of support, counseling and help from their teachers and mentors. Overall, she believes that it was in terms of all-round development that IIHMR, Bangalore excelled – through and through, and were also very successful in confidence building and 100% placement was achieved as well.
Always having worked in the favor of making learning more important than just scoring well in exams, Dr. Usha is a firm believer of students deserving more chances and counseling in their educational journeys. Also, at the same time she talks about the importance of knowledge endowment by the onboard faculty members of any institute or educational hub. So, under her leadership a 360 degree feedback mechanism exists at IIHMR, Bangalore, which is not just another feedback system, but a proactively responsive medium, which caters to and provides to every student on the campus. Summing up the whole conversation through a humble message directed towards the women educational aspirants of today, Dr. Usha, stated – “I’ve always been a woman’s woman, and it’s an exciting as well as challenging time for women across the world, many have succeeded in our personal as well as professional lives”. “I also ask everyone to take calculated risks, and take up important jobs/responsibilities, and most importantly, parents – don’t limit your girl child, let her grow, and let her find her own path”.