The honourable Minister of Education and Minister of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Government of India, Shri Dharmendra Pradhan marked a historic day at the National Institute of Technology, Rourkela (NIT, Rourkela) on November 30, 2023, with the inauguration of a Kendriya Vidyalaya (KV) and the unveiling of six groundbreaking projects. True to their commitment of enhancing female participation in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields, the institute laid the foundation for three 500-seater girls' hostels.
Through the allocation of a substantial fifteen acre plot, NIT Rourkela strategically plans the construction of brand new hostels for both its male and female students. As of now, the institute plans to utilise half of the area for a 1000-seater boys' hostel and three fourth of the area for three girls' hostels, each with an accommodation capacity of 500 students, respectively. The remaining area will be set aside for construction purposes in the future.
Of the three girls’ hostels, one is being funded by Mahanadi Coalfields Limited (MCL); who are investing ₹42.69 crores into the project as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility engagement. The other girl’s hostel is being funded by the Ministry of Education with the aid of the Economically Weaker Section (EWS) scheme fund. The remainder of the project, costing ₹165.81 crores is set to be completed with the support of the Higher Education Financing Agency (HEFA). Furthermore, the development of the Kendriya Vidyalaya-NIT Rourkela infrastructure will be supported by Coal India.
In a moment of immense pride, the honourable Minister Shri Dharmendra Pradhan commended NIT Rourkela's pivotal role in the country's educational landscape by calling it “the glory of our country”! He reiterated that “... 8 thousand students from India and abroad are studying in this educational institution. More than 3 thousand students of Odisha are studying here. Students of NIT Rourkela have become successful citizens abroad. More than 2500 students will benefit from the projects unveiled today. Apart from this, there were 2 KVs in Rourkela earlier, today it is a matter of happiness that KV-NIT Rourkela will be the third KV”.
The honourable Minister of Education and Minister of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Government of India, Shri Dharmendra Pradhan, inaugurated a Kendriya Vidyalaya (KV) at NIT, Rourkela. National Institute of Technology, Rourkela
Demonstrating its commitment to sustainable practices on campus, the institute is constructing a 1.5 MLD Sewage Treatment Plant and faculty residences. Goes without saying, noteworthy contributions from MCL, the Ministry of Education, and HEFA will ensure the completion of such transformative projects.
Speaking at the event, Professor K Umamaheshwar Rao, Director, NIT Rourkela drew attention to the fact that, “One of the primary objectives of NEP-2020 is to eliminate any disparity in access to education for children of all communities or other socio-economically disadvantaged groups. Towards this NIT Rourkela, through the Kendriya Vidyalaya, is aiming to provide high quality education for all. We do believe that the residential facilities for the students have to be the best, within the available resources and, thus, we are creating these infra projects at the campus”.
When The Telegraph Online Edugraph expressly sought to understand from the Director about the specific initiatives and strategies that were being employed by the institute to promote female participation in STEM fields with respect to its overall commitment to inclusive education, Professor K Umamaheshwar Rao informed us, “One of the main reasons for girl students to take interest in any institute is based on the variety of courses that are being offered by it. In this regard, NIT Rourkela takes pride in stating that there are 20 streams in total, of them Life Sciences, Humanities and Social Sciences, Biotechnology, Medical Sciences, Planning and Architecture, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Food Processing, Ceramics Engineering and Management are offered in addition to the core engineering disciplines streams; and some of the above STEM courses have been attracting higher than 20% enrolment by the girls. Furthering this choice, availability of proper residential facilities is also another factor in this regard”.
As the event unfolded further, the efforts of NIT Rourkela towards social welfare in the interest of the nation were also appreciated by the Guest of Honour, Shri Jual Oram, Member of Parliament, Sundargarh, Odisha, and Chairperson, Parliamentary Committee on Defiance. He urged the institute to collaborate with the Incubation Centre operating in the city, which happens to provide training to the tribal students in high pressure welding, carpentry, fashion technology etc., without any remuneration.
The illustrious guests who had graced the occasion. National Institute of Technology, Rourkela
In line with this thought, we enquired of the Director as to how the institute plans to leverage their various educational integrations for enhancing the overall learning experience for its students and fostering partnerships with the said Incubation Centre in the near future.
Professor K Umamaheshwar Rao, told us illuminatingly, “India is harnessing a dream of making India into a ‘Knowledge Hub’ of the world and this dream is only possible if every single young child is given the right opportunity for a quality education. And this is the commitment of NIT Rourkela towards building a strong nation, in terms of skill and knowledge. The Foundation for Technology and Business (FTBI) is an Incubation Centre housed at the NIT Rourkela which provides funds and supports startups that are incubated in it. FTBI, in turn, is supported by the National Science and Technology Entrepreneurship Development Board (NSTEDB), Department of Science and Technology (DST), Government of India, MeitY, Startup India, GAIL, SAIL and MCL. It serves as the nodal agency of Startup Odisha to boost and support the local/ regional startups fostering innovation, building resilient teams, and creating a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem”.
With a minimum 20% reservation for girls in each discipline, NIT Rourkela continues to pave the way for inclusive education. Currently, the number of girl students in the Undergraduate (UG) programmes is 960, that in Post Graduate (PG) programmes is 420, and that in the PhD programmes is 503 – of the combined strength of 8000 students studying at the institute.
The illustrious event, attended by dignitaries like Shri Shankar Oram, MLA, Biramitrapur; Shri Bhabani Shankar Bhoi, MLA, Talsara; Dr. Shiharan Bose, DC, KVS RO, Bhubaneswar; and Guest of Honour Shri Keshav Rao, Chairman cum Managing Director (Additional Incharge), MCL, Odisha, attracted over 3,000 attendees.
At last, the event culminated with taking oath and participating in the live broadcast of the launch of the Viksit Bharat Sankalp Yatra – a mega outreach campaign aligning with the government of India’s schemes.
Attendees took the 'Humara Sankalp Viksit Bharat' pledge. National Institute of Technology, Rourkela
While the Kendriya Vidyalaya at NIT, Rourkela promises to foster interdisciplinary collaboration through its educational integration programmes, its various infrastructural projects continue to create a conducive environment for academic pursuits and socio-economic transformation across the society.
About NIT Rourkela
NIT Rourkela is one of the premier national level institutions for technical education in the country and is funded by the Government of India. NIT Rourkela has earned 16th position in NIRF Ranking 2023 (Engineering Category), Overall 37th position, 29th position under Research and 8th position in Architecture and Planning category.
The campus of the Institute consisting of the Institute buildings, halls of residence and staff colony in over an area of 262 hectares of land. It is a residential campus offering accommodation to faculty, staff and students. The campus has all the amenities for developing personal, social and academic skills of the student community.