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Doctoral debut at St. Xavier's

St. Xavier's College will start PhD courses in four subjects from the 2016-17 academic year.

The subjects in which the doctoral programme will be offered are microbiology, biotechnology, physics and commerce, college principal Father Felix Raj said on Thursday.

"Calcutta University has given us permission to start PhD courses from this academic session. We will be advertising for applications soon," the principal said.

The candidates for the doctoral programme will be selected based on their course work, which will start in August. Up to six scholars can do their research under one guide.

"We have selected the PhD committee and admissions will begin shortly," Felix Raj said. The college, he said, will keep offering the PhD course even after St. Xavier's University comes into being.

The St. Xavier's authorities are set to hand over to the government their letter of intent and proposal for setting up the university in July.

If things move as planned, St. Xavier's University, to function from Rajarhat, will begin its journey in the 2017-2018 academic year with Master's courses in business administration, social work and commerce and Bachelor courses in business administration and commerce.

"We wanted to have the infrastructure ready before the bill (sanctioning the setting up of the university) is passed, which we are hoping will happen in the coming Assembly session. Two of the academic buildings have come up (on the Rajarhat campus) and work on a hostel building, a library and a research centre have started. We should be able to start in July 2017," said Felix Raj.

The college, which was granted the autonomous status in 2006, has received 32,000 applications for the 2,600-odd undergraduate seats for the upcoming session.

The authorities will start putting up merit lists from Friday. Classes will start on July 4.

St. Xavier's is also working on expanding its collaborations with foreign universities, such as St. Cloud University, Minnesota, Fordhan University, New York, and Saint Joseph's University, Philadelphia. "We look forward to building on the existing collaborations and add new ones because the experience broadens their (students') world view," said Felix Raj.


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