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Gaps In Quality Education Despite Vast Network Of Colleges: President Kovind

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The President noted that India has a massive network of 903 universities and 39,050 colleges.

President Ram Nath Kovind said India has a vast network of universities and colleges but gaps still exist in attaining world-class excellence in education. To achieve global standards, the government has taken a decision to promote 20 institutions of higher education as “institutes of eminence”, Kovind said at the 15th convocation ceremony of the Symbiosis International University here.

The President noted that India has a massive network of 903 universities and 39,050 colleges.

“But the fact is there are still gaps in quality and in attaining world-class excellence across the spectrum,” he said.

“In this context, the government has taken a decision to promote and support 20 institutions of higher education as ‘institutes of eminence’, to grant them recruitment and curricula flexibility in order to reach best-in-class global standards,” he added.

After a competitive process, the first few of these institutes of eminence were announced recently. There will be future rounds as well, he said.

Underlining the performance of girls in higher education, he said as president, he made a conscious effort to visit universities and educational institutions across the country to meet and interact with students and future thought leaders of the country.

“One of my findings has been that the academic performance of girl students tends to exceed that of boys. Today too, of the nine gold medals awarded at this convocation, six have gone to graduating girls. This is commendable and a happy sign for our society,” he said.

He also asked students to use their education to help fellow citizens.

“Your education gives you responsibility to help those less-privileged and less-fortunate. How you choose to do this is entirely up to you, but remember that your empathy for fellow citizens is as much a test of your scholarship as your mark-sheet or your degree,” the president said.

He said knowledge has no gender or geographical boundaries and that India has been a centre of learning for centuries.

From Taxila to Nalanda, the subcontinent’s age-old universities attracted students from different parts of Asia and beyond, he noted.

“In modern times as well, our campuses have been open to and welcoming talented young people from many countries, specially those in our neighbourhood and in Africa, a continent with which we have a special relationship, shaped in classrooms,” Kovind said.

He said it was worth noting that 46,144 international students from 166 countries study in various colleges, universities and institutions of higher learning in India.

“Of those who are graduating today, 329 students are from 33 countries other than India. This adds to the multicultural and cosmopolitan atmosphere of your (Symbiosis) campus, and promotes goodwill among nations,” he said.

He congratulated the graduates hailing from other countries, specially one from Uganda who won the ‘Outstanding Foreign Student’ Award.

“You arrived here as students. I am confident you are departing as lifelong friends and unofficial ambassadors of India,” he said.

He said the story of modern India owes much to the progressive ideas that have flowed from Pune, and for which “our nation is truly appreciative”.

He hailed social reformers like Jyotiba Phule and Savitribai Phule, M G Ranade, Vasudev Balwant Phadke, Bal Gangadhar Tilak and Gopal Krishna Gokhale for taking the “lamp of learning” far and wide.

For each of them, the “spread of education was non-negotiable”, he said, adding that “breadth of Indian higher education is appreciable”.

(SOURCE NDTV)

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IIT Roorkee Signs MoU With ISRO For Space Technology Cell

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IIT Roorkee Director A K Chaturvedi said a memorandum of understanding was signed with the ISRO to launch a space technology cell at the institute.

The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Roorkee in Uttarakhand on Friday said it tied up with the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) to set up a Space Technology Cell at its campus.

“The ISRO-IIT Roorkee Space Technology Cell shall pursue advanced research in the areas of relevance to the future technological and programmatic needs of the Indian space programme,” a statement from IIT Roorkee said.

The cell shall ensure to maximize the use of research potential, infrastructure, expertise and experience that exist in ISRO and IIT Roorkee, the statement said.

The institute will be providing the infrastructure and administrative support in setting up the cell.

The research facility will consist of faculty members, visiting scientists, experts, research personnel, technical, administrative and support staff.

Bengaluru-based ISRO has been undertaking several student outreach programmes over the past few months in order to develop scientific temper among the country’s youth.

(Source NDTV)

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IIT Kharagpur To Adopt Amazon Web Services Educate Programme

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As part of AWS Educate, the students will gain access to 12 Cloud Career Pathways covering topics that are in demand by employers, such as machine learning, cybersecurity, and software development, each with over 30 hours of content.

The Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur will adopt Amazon Web Services (AWS) Educate programme to help students gain cloud computing skills including hands-on experience in Artificial Intelligence (AI), a top official of the institute has said. “We are happy to introduce AWS Educate programme to provide AWS Cloud Computing experience and AI-enablement for all our students, irrespective of their branch of study. We look forward to some really innovative solution ideas coming out of this,” Director IIT Kharagpur Professor P P Chakrabarti said on Friday.

The AWS Educate programme is Amazon’s global initiative to provide students and educators with resources needed to accelerate cloud-related learning and to help power the workforce of tomorrow. The programme offers a robust set of no-cost tools, resources and AWS Promotional Credits for students and educators to boost their cloud skills and experience, an official statement said.

“AWS Educate is designed to impart skill to students with the latest advancements in cloud computing technology and provide them with an environment to experiment on AWS Cloud, without making them worried about cost or access challenges,” the statement quoted Amazon Internet Services Private Limited, president, Rahul Sharma as saying.

“We are pleased to work with IIT Kharagpur in their journey of higher learning, and to help them nurture new talent for a cloud-ready workforce,” he was quoted in the statement.

As part of AWS Educate, the students will gain access to 12 Cloud Career Pathways covering topics that are in demand by employers, such as machine learning, cybersecurity, and software development, each with over 30 hours of content.

Upon completion, learners are eligible to receive an AWS Educate Certificate of Completion or an AWS Educate Badge.

(Source NDTV)

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Artificial Intelligence, Yoga Among New Subjects For CBSE Students

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CBSE has approved inclusion of Artificial Intelligence (AI) as an optional sixth subject for class 9 students.

CBSE students will now be introduced to the rapidly rising world of Artificial Intelligence (AI). The central education board has approved inclusion of Artificial Intelligence as an optional sixth subject for class 9 students from the upcoming academic session which starts in April 2019. Apart from Artificial Intelligence (AI), CBSE has also introduced Early Childhood Care Education, and Yoga as new subjects.

Recognizing the ‘geo-strategic’ importance of AI, CBSE has decided to offer AI as a sixth optional subject to students of class 9 onwards. Schools can also start a module on AI learning for class 8 students.

The CBSE circular says, “To enhance the multidisciplinary approach in teaching learning and also to sensitize the new generation, it was decided that School may start AI “Inspire module” of 12 hours at Class VIII itself.”

Yoga and Early Childhood Care Education will be introduced at Senior Secondary Level from this academic session.

CBSE is also offering class 10 students the choice to opt for a sixth Skill paper along with the existing five compulsory papers. If a student fails in any one of the three elective subjects (i.e. Science, Mathematics and Social Science), then it can be replaced by the Skill subject (offered as a 6th subject) and the result of Class X will be computed based on best five subjects. However, if a candidate wishes to reappear in the failed subject, they may appear along with the compartment examination.

CBSE has also asked schools affiliated with the Board to offer at least one Skill subject at Senior Secondary level.

Schools need to send the application for starting Skill subjects from 2019-20 session to CBSE latest by March 31, 2019.

(Source – NDTV)

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