When you hear… you forget. When you see… you remember. When you do… you understand.
This sounds very much the way we learnt things in our childhood. Our parents did not tell us how to walk, but made us walk. They did not show us how to ride a bicycle, they made us ride it. And that’s how learning goes naturally: deriving inspiration by doing things, ‘Inspired Learning’.
In this era of information overload, educational institutions hardly devote time and resources to make students follow this natural path of learning. An exception to this is Manipal Institute of Technology (MIT), where the ‘been there, done that’ spirit has helped students make a mark worldwide.
While in other colleges, students were seeing how a car is built, students at MIT designed and manufactured a high performance car which made its way into the ‘Formula Student 2009’ (Student edition of Formula One), at Silverstone, UK. MIT got 65th position among teams from 126 universities of 23 countries. Several other feathers of innovation have been added to MIT’s achievement hat within the last 2 years like: 1st position in “Train Blazer- 2008”; 1st position in “GE Edison Innovation Challenge -2008”; 1st and 2nd position in “Schneider Electric Innovation Challenge” 2008; 1st prize for an Innovative proposal on “Solar Power embedded Street Lamp” and many more.
The foundation of this hub of thinking and innovation was laid 52 years ago, and since then is being strengthened by constructive effort and hard work. The quality of technical education is evident in the research activities going on in the campus: 6 patents filed in the current year, 9 grants received for various activities and, several papers, books and awards added to its research portfolio. A major landmark is ‘Manipal University Technology Business Incubator’, which is being established with a huge funding from the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India.
While focusing on innovation, MIT has taken care of students by getting them absorbed into the best industries, through quality industry projects and collaborations with universities and companies. ‘Practice School’ is one such concept, in sync with the idea of ‘Inspired learning’. This was introduced at MIT in 2005, through which students are trained to effectively link the theory learnt in classrooms with the practice in the industry. This training helps reduce the cost for a company, on in-house training of students who are their prospective employees. Due to such efforts placement statistics have been moving up since 2005 reaching 95% in 2008. Even in the recession hit 2008-09, 56 companies turned up offering jobs to 948 students, with the best remuneration reaching 10.75 lakhs per annum. MIT now stands 7th among the private Engineering colleges in India, and 22nd overall.
A student, Gaurav Sinha (4th year, Electrical and Electronics) quotes “MIT has provided me with excellent opportunities to develop to my full potential. The environment is conducive for our growth and along with the state-of-art infrastructure facilities available helps bring out the best in each of us. The platform and exposure that I got at MIT has groomed my personality and prepared me to face any challenge in future”. Already having produced strong personalities of industry like Rajeev Chandrasekhar (Chairman & CEO of Jupiter Capital; FICCI President; Founder & former-CEO of BPL mobile), Ravi Bapna (Executive Director of CITNE & Professor, Indian School of Business) , Amit Behl (Director, Intel India) , etc. the excellent infrastructure coupled with innovative learning and course content, holds promise for a much brighter future for the country.
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