EDUCATIONEVENTSMUSICPRINTINGPUBLISHINGPUBLICATIONSRADIOTELEVISIONWELFARECAREER
INDIA TODAY - The most widely read newsweekly in South Asia.
CURRENT ISSUE  
ARCHIVE  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

INDIA TODAY - The most widely read newsweekly in South Asia.
    CURRENT ISSUE JUNE 13, 2005
 
   COVER STORY:
 
SCIENCE

Loyola and St Stephen's make a spectacular move upward while Chennai's Presidency slumps down the list
 

You are about to enter a learning zone." The writing on the wall is clear. But only a tenth of the 20,000-plus applicants get to read it as they enter the principal's office at Loyola College, Chennai, for an admission interview. Fewer still get through the interactive session and it establishes in no time that the import of those modest words is enormous.

  PICTURE SPEAK
TOP GRADE: Loyola's emphasis on interdisciplinary studies has paid off

Scaling up to the top slo t from No. 3 last year, Loyola has always been in the reckoning. Similarly St Stephen's, Delhi, has moved up to No. 2 from the fifth place while Presidency College, Kolkata, has jumped four notches from No. 7 to No. 3. However, Presidency College, Chennai, which donned the winner's hat last year, has been pushed down the ladder.

For Loyola, the survey rankings couldn't have come at a better time. Just last year, the University Grants Commission (UGC) conferred on the college the Potential for Excellence Award which carried a grant of Rs 1 crore for infrastructure development. Principal Fr A. Albert Muthumalai, however, takes the institute's success in his stride. After assuming charge in 2004, he has continued with the Loyola tradition of restructuring its syllabus and teaching methods, all the while encouraging a constant interaction between various departments. "There is a great demand for basic sciences. Loyola tries to fulfil the students' expectations for quality science education," says Fr Muthumalai.

  TOP 10
CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE GRAPHIC

The latest addition to the science courses is a UGC-sponsored postgraduate programme in biomedical instrumentation. More than the PhDs that the majority of the 241 faculty members in the 18 departments hold, it is their willingness to learn with students that keeps Loyola teachers a notch above the rest. The standard of the students themselves can be gauged from Loyola's alumni list: Union ministers P. Chidambaram and Dayanidhi Maran and former RBI governor R. Rangarajan are just a few of the names that matter.

Apart from the old boys, the pride of the college in recent years has been the Loyola Institute of Frontier Energy (LIFE). With its focus on interdisciplinary learning and research, it has pushed the departments of physics, chemistry and zoology to pathbreaking collaborations and even winning a couple of patents, including one for a digital humidity sensor. Founded in 1995, LIFE has to its credit 83 scientific works published in national and international journals. The institute also initiates undergraduates to research activities while allowing teachers to open up new possibilities of learning.

  RANKING OF COLLEGES
  ON THEMES
CLICK HERE TO VIEW THE GRAPHIC

Education at Loyola is a continuous process. Even for its professors. Ask Dr S. Vincent, a lecturer in the zoology department. He was researching on the accumulation of heavy metals in fish when his colleagues in chemistry department suggested that he use "electrodes instead of atomic absorption spectrograph to get faster results". It worked. The jargon apart, it shows the synergy that takes place in Loyola.

Loyola's heavy stress on research is also evident from the establishment of centres like the Entomology Research Institute (ERI). Dr C. Kandasamy, an ERI alumnus, is now head of the global regulatory affairs department of pesticides major Tagros Chemicals. "The training that I got at ERI formed the basis of my career," he says, "and I can find social relevance in whatever I do."

Social responsibility is another thing the Jesuits teach their students early on. Undergraduate students put in 60 hours in Loyola's Community Development Programme, working in schools as well as slums. On the other end of the spectrum is the college's interface with the industry. Companies like Wipro, Infosys, HLL, Jet Airways and Tata Consultancy Services recruited more than 30 students from the campus last year.

The trend continues in varying degrees in the other top colleges in the science stream. Delhi's Stephenians, for example, carry their own premium and not without reason. The liberal education, plus the plethora of clubs and societies at St Stephen's give them the necessary exposure.

At Presidency College, Kolkata, too, the stress on research gives students the edge. With its chemistry department poised to make a significant contribution to the control of arsenic contamination of food, the college has shown, yet again, that progress in science, among other things, lies in the ability to respond to the changing times.

Previous Story

Next Story

 

INDIA TODAY - The most widely read newsweekly in South Asia.
CURRENT ISSUE
JUNE 13, 2005
 IN THIS ISSUE
COVER STORY

TOP 10 COLLEGES OF INDIA

OTHER STORIES
 

ARTS

SCIENCE

COMMERCE

MEDICINE

ENGINEERING

LAW

Ready Reckoner

India's Best Business Schools

World's Best Business schools

Where East Meets West

Blast From The Past

The Guns Fall Silent

Cross-border Traffic

Hero Turns Villain

Correcting Columbus

Relative Clause

Rock Rush

Tipu's Treasures

 

Do you think the visit to Pakistan by the Hurriyat leaders will impact the peace process between India and Pakistan?
 
South Asia's most influential and most read newsweekly presents the fourth Conclave India Tomorrow 2005 : Perception vs Reality



CONTACTUS SYNDICATIONSSUBSCRIPTIONFAQsPRIVACYPOLICY