IIT-Kharagpur to Hold Global Semesters in Term Breaks

With a director finally at its helm, IIT-Kharagpur is all set to adopt global academic practices. The premier institute plans to have international semesters on the lines of summer and winter semesters at top foreign universities.

The programme will be held during the summer or winter breaks and won’t clash with IIT-Kharagpur’s academic calendar, director Partha Pratim Chakrabarti said. BTech and MTech students may earn credit points from such programmes conducted in collaboration with foreign institutes. The credits will be added to the students’ final scores when they pass out.

The institute has already signed several MoUs with varsities in Japan, Germany, Canada, Russia, Taiwan and Columbia to facilitate collaborative programmes, revealed Chakrabarti’s predecessor Shankar Kumar Som. Holding summer semesters is integral to the grand plan that is expected to fetch handsome funds. Many corporate heavyweights are interested in sponsoring the programme.

“We may be in a position to start the international semester programme from next summer,” said a faculty member. The director prefers to keep the details under wraps. “I can’t divulge the plan before I share it with the faculty members and get it through,” Chakrabarti said.

Chakrabarti, a teacher of computer science, joined office on Saturday after a year-long controversy over his appointment. The new director, however, isn’t shifting his focus from the medical education programme under consideration.

“We hope to start the MBBS course from the 2016-17 session. We have to get affiliation from the Medical Council of India,” Chakrabarti said. The proposal is awaiting Cabinet nod, former director Som revealed.

IIT-Kgp is in talks with Johns Hopkins Hospital in the US, Imperial College in London and with Tata Cancer Research Centre in Kolkata for joint projects.

“My aim is to groom the medical college into an ideal research and innovation-based institute. The intake of doctoral students will gradually go up to 30% from 10% at the moment,” the director said.

The effort will also allow IIT graduates to take up medical engineering.

At the 59th convocation on Saturday, Utsav Banerjee got the President’s gold medal and Mayank Shrivastav the Prime Minister’s gold medal.

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