Quality as hallmark

Published : Mar 11, 2011 00:00 IST



GITAM's aim is to be one of the top universities in the world by 2020.

IN 1980, a group of industrialists and educationists led by former Member of Parliament M.V.V.S. Murthi decided to start an institution to promote higher education in the areas of engineering, technology and management. What began as an engineering college with 220 students by the Gandhi Institute of Technology and Management (GITAM) has now grown into a university with six institutions, a distance learning centre, 10,000 students and 600 faculty members in its Visakhapatnam and Hyderabad campuses.

Three years ago, GITAM became the first private university (deemed university under Section 3 of the University Grants Commission Act) in Andhra Pradesh. This has given it more flexibility; it can conduct its own entrance test, which is totally online, and introduce new courses. GITAM completes its academic calendar according to schedule and has an admission process that is well ahead of other universities.

The 100-acre lush green campus near the seashore at Rushikonda in Visakhapatnam is not just what is attracting students from the State and other parts of the country to the university. The aim of our institution is to become a global player in higher education, and our activities and plans are guided accordingly towards imparting quality education of global standards, says Vice-Chancellor G. Subramanyam.

GITAM opened its Hyderabad campus in 2009-10, where programmes in engineering and management, and a masters in computer applications (MCA) are offered. The distance education centre has online and video teaching facilities.

The university offers 15 undergraduate programmes, 34 postgraduate programmes, 10 MPhil and 19 PhD programmes. Every institute of GITAM University is located in a modern building and the campus has a conference hall and outdoor meeting place. The campus has facilities such as a cafeteria, a bank and bookstores.

Since its inception, GITAM has been concentrating on moulding its students to face challenges in the globalisation era. Its programmes, teaching methods, and seminars on the campus and outside are yielding results.

The university has in the past few years been inviting India's top companies, organisations and recruiters along with multinational companies to train its students to face campus interviews. Its placement record is excellent, with almost every student appearing for an interview getting selected. This year more than 1,200 students got placements through campus interviews, which is a record for the State, claimed the university authorities.

We understand the requirements of the industry in the areas of professional and competent manpower, says Prof. Subramanyam. Despite the economic meltdown, we have been able to conduct campus interviews without a hitch, thanks to our high standards and our relationship with top companies.

Providing consultancy is one of the main activities of GITAM. The faculty is encouraged to take up consultancy assignments. Senior faculty is also encouraged to take up projects funded by Central agencies such as the Department of Science and Technology (DST), the University Grants Commission (UGC), and the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).

Recognising the importance of offering courses relevant to the needs of the industry and to ensure better jobs for its students, GITAM has entered into memorandums of understanding (MoUs) with foreign institutions. On its own it has introduced MTech and MSc programmes. Other courses introduced are five-year dual degree programmes, two-year MPharm programmes with four specialisations, an MSc course in cosmetology and a BTech course in industrial engineering.

To ensure quality in inter-disciplinary research, GITAM has established several research centres such as the Centre for Integrated Rural Development; the Centre for Sustainable Urban Development; the Centre for Climate Change and Disaster Management; the Centre for Gandhian Studies; the Centre for Human Science and Service; the Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship; and GITAM International Skin Centre.

We want to provide our faculty and students a multicultural ambience for transfer of technology, ideas, and facilitate learning that is truly world-class and contemporary, says Subramanyam. Quality is its hallmark.

The GITAM Institute of Technology is accredited by the National Board of Accreditation (NBA) and the Institute of Management has got A' grade from the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC). The Institute of Pharmacy has an ISO 9001:2000 certification. The university's main library, the Knowledge Resource Centre, has over 1.6 lakh books and has e-learning facility. The campus has an excellent indoor stadium, tennis courts with artificial turf and an outdoor stadium.

GITAM's aim is to be one of the top universities in the world by 2020, introduce new programmes, increase its research and scholarship profile, provide world-class infrastructure, reorganise its institutes into schools, introduce choice-based credit system and ensure continuous growth of the university.

The most critical factor for the success of the university is its internal vitality. Its capacity to remain relevant and contemporary and its ability to anticipate and proactively manage change, says Prof. Subramanyam.

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