The primary focus at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT)- Delhi is to encourage a culture of entrepreneurship and research, right from the BTech to the PhD level. “IIT-Delhi probably has the country’s best developed ecosystem for entrepreneurship,” says V. Ramgopal Rao, the institute’s director. “Of the 21 unicorns built by IITians, 11 are by Delhi IITians. In the past two years, we have also invested close to Rs 100 crore in revamping the experimental facilities for research at the campus.”
To encourage the spirit of entrepreneurship among the faculty as well, India’s top-ranked engineering college has started a weekly initiative called Faculty Innovation and Research Entrepreneurship (FIRE), where faculty members who wish to turn their research work into a start-up can work on their projects, which would be funded by the institute.
IIT-Delhi has emerged as the country’s strongest provider of highly employable graduates, as per the QS Graduate Employability Rankings, 2018. To add to the new initiatives taken in the past couple of years, IIT-Delhi, traditionally known for offering only degree programmes, has now been approved to offer diploma courses to working professionals in areas such as artificial intelligence and blockchain technology, keeping in tune with industry needs. Jashan Singh Suri, who is pursuing a dual degree in the department of biochemical engineering and biotechnology, says, “The campus is often visited by multinational companies from fields such as finance, business and consulting, giving students who wish to switch their careers from engineering an array of opportunities.”
Another step has been the establishment of a new Centre for Automotive and Research Tribology (CART), with the institute spending up to Rs 20 crore initially. “We want to develop resources for industries in terms of vehicle technologies and components focused on electric vehicles,” says Rao.
One thing that both the students and the institute’s director vouch for is the overall personal development that one goes through at IIT-Delhi. “There is a competitive environment, freedom to pursue one’s chosen career path, well-established clubs as well as facilities for extracurricular and recreational activities, such as sports, music and dance,” says Suri. Rao adds, “There are students’ clubs that let them opt for diverse activities and nurture different aspects of their development. We have a strong alumni network (about 50,000) and many of them are connected with the students on campus.”
Rao, however, rues land constraint at the institute. “IIT-Delhi is spread across 300 acres. Being situated in south Delhi, we are a land-locked campus. We have grown by 50 per cent in terms of students and faculty in the past seven years, so we have written to the housing and urban affairs ministry to grant us land in Delhi to come up with an extension campus,” informs Rao. Last year, IIT-Delhi set up its extension campus in Sonipat, housing three science and technology parks. Way to go!
IIT-Delhi has collaborated with the University of Queensland, Australia, and National Chiao Tung University, Taiwan, to offer joint PhD programmes
Rs 8.5 lakh is the tuition fee for the entire BTech/BE course; all special category students (SC+ST +PH ) and those having annual income less than Rs 1 lakh are fully exempted from this payment
What sets IIT-Delhi apart?
IIT-Delhi probably has the best ecosystem for entrepreneurship. Of the 21 unicorns by IITians, 11 are from IIT-Delhi.
In the past two years, the institute has invested close to Rs 100 crore on revamping the experimental facilities for research.
What new initiatives have been taken in the past three years?
We have started the Faculty Interdisciplinary Research Project (FIRP) through which our faculty can work with the faculties of institutions in India or abroad. We have signed MoUs with the AIIMS, All India Institute of Ayurveda and the Indian Council for Agricultural Research even as discussions are on with some US universities.
We have also started the ‘Discover and Learn (1-2-3-4) Project’ in which students, in groups of four, work on research projects under the supervision of a faculty member. The projects are funded by the institute. Fifty such groups have already been formed.
There’s the Platform for Harnessing Deep Technologies under which PhD students can turn their ideas into start-ups.
On the curriculum front, IIT-Delhi has started offering diploma programmes to working professionals in areas such as artificial intelligence and blockchain technology.
A new Centre for Automotive and Research Tribology (CART) has been established, with an initial expense of Rs 20 crore. We want to develop resources for industries in terms of vehicle technologies and components focused on electric vehicles
One thing I want to improve in my institute
IIT-Delhi is spread across 300 acres, and being situated in south Delhi, we are a land-locked campus. The institute has grown by 50 per cent in terms of student and faculty strength in the past seven years. So we have written to the Union ministry of housing and urban affairs to grant us land elsewhere in Delhi to be come up with an extension campus.
Why I chose IIT-Delhi
IIT-Delhi is the top engineering college in the country. Multinational companies from across fields, such as finance, business and consulting, visit the campus, offering an array of opportunities to students who wish to switch their career from engineering.
What’s unique about campus life at IIT-Delhi?
Being located in the heart of south Delhi, the campus is extremely accessible in terms of lodging and transportation. There are no restrictions for men and women. The students council and administration have ensured this independence to all students. The highly qualified and motivated faculty members mentor the students in a competitive environment.