FIVE-STAR STATUS MAKES CU CAMPUS OF CHOICE
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Calcutta | Published 15.10.01, 12:00 AM|
Calcutta, Oct. 15 : Calcutta, Oct. 15: The 'five-star' status accorded to Calcutta University by the National Accreditation Assessment Committee (NAAC) has started paying dividends. The university has received about 8,000 to 10,000 more applications for admission to post-graduate courses, compared to yesteryear, and a bulk of them are from other states. The science or technology faculties are the top draws, with over 30,000 applications for 1,200 seats. 'This is definitely a lot more than we have been receiving in the past,' M.K. Sengupta, secretary of the science and technology faculties, confirmed on Monday. 'Most of the applicants are from outside the state. We were initially surprised by this trend, so we asked the students what had led them to apply in greater numbers. The almost unanimous reply was the five-star status that the university has received from NAAC.' University sources said the applications have come in not only from neighbouring states like Orissa and the Northeast, but also from Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtra. 'We have noticed a similar trend in the arts section,' said Bimal Mukherjee, dean of arts. 'This year, we have received at least 20 to 30 per cent more appications from other states than we have in previous years. This, we believe, is largely due to the new-found NAAC status.' According to Sengupta, 'what is really interesting is the applications coming in from the south and the west.' A 'five-star status', conferred by NAAC, an autonomous body set up by the University Grants Commission (UGC), is based not only on a university's academic performance but also on its infrastucture. The award determines the amount of UGC funding. University sources pointed out that apart from the NAAC award, the students' performance in the National Eligibility Test (Net), held to recruit teachers to state-aided colleges across the country, had also tilted the scales towards Calcutta University. Said Ajit Banik, chairman of the West Bengal College Service Commission: 'The fact that students from our university have figured on the Net merit list has had a definite impact.' On the flip side, however, some Calcutta University under-graduates aspiring for courses of their choice at the post-graduate level, have found themselves missing the bus. Though outside admissions are fixed at five per cent of the seats available in any given course, unlike other years, this year the quota has been quickly filled up. 'As a result,' concluded Sengupta, 'in our post-graduate courses, we are able to accommodate only those with high first-class degrees.'