The Telegraph
Monday , May 23 , 2016
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July 2017 date for Xavier's varsity

St. Xavier's University will start its journey in July 2017 with three master's and two bachelor's courses.

The announcement was made by Father Felix Raj, the principal of St. Xavier's College and president of the St. Xavier's College Calcutta Alumni Association (SXCCAA), on the sidelines of Beyond Boundaries VI in Toronto, Canada, last week.

"We expect the chief minister's good support will continue in her second term and that we will be able to realise her expectations and our plans of starting the university by July 2017," said Felix Raj at the international convention of Xaverians, organised by the SXCCAA in association with The Telegraph.

The initial five courses on the Rajarhat campus will be master's in business administration, master's in social work, master's in commerce, bachelor's in commerce and bachelor's in business administration.

While the master's courses will start with one section of 60 students each, the bachelor's courses will have three sections each of 60 students. The university will admit students to the courses through entrance exams.

Father Felix Raj (extreme right), the principal of St. Xavier’s College, at the inauguration of Beyond Boundaries VI in Toronto

The university, being set up through public-private partnership, will be the first government-aided minority university. Government representatives will be on the institute's board of governors.

"The bill (for setting up the university) is ready and we will submit it by the end of June 2016. We hope the bill will be passed in the winter session of the Assembly," said Felix Raj.

The St. Xavier's authorities are also planning to start an engineering school on the Rajarhat campus.

The university is part of the SXC Vision 2020 project, which aims to take the enrolment up from 7,300 students now to 16,000-20,000 by 2020. Felix Raj shared the SXC Vision 2020 with the alumni, urging the Xaverians in Canada to help complete the girls' hostel on the new campus. The hostel will accommodate 1,000 students.

"The convention is firstly an attempt to reach out and connect with more and more Xaverians and second to get their response to my project of the girls' hostel which they have already accepted," the principal said.

The convention, which began with a tour of Toronto on May 20, saw two panel discussions on the second day.

One of the discussions was on the influence of Jesuit teachings and how they are applicable in today's world, while the other saw Xaverians and non-Xaverians of Indian origin share their success stories.

The second day also saw a performance by actress Rituparna Sengupta on Tagore's songs.

As part of the convention, all chapters of the SXCCAA will meet and chalk out a roadmap for the alumni association and plans for SXC Vision 2020.

"Beyond Boundaries has become a festival marked out in the calendar of every Xaverian. It is not only about coming together and renewing old bonds but also about raising funds for our alma mater. We are what we are because of what this institution has given us," said Firdausal Hasan, honorary secretary of the SXCCAA.

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