Chennai, 19 August 2018: Pan IIT Alumni Leadership Series (PALS), the body comprising alumni from various Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) in the country, yesterday (18th August 2018) launched its 2018-19 annual activities aimed at making engineering college students ‘Industry ready.’ PALS offers a year-long program with various activities for students, faculty and management of Engineering Institutions.
PALS is supported by IIT Alumni Industry Interaction Centre (IITAIIC) and IIT Madras Alumni Charitable Trust (IITMACT) for the benefit of engineering college students in Tamil Nadu. Till Academic year 2017-18, PALS has positively impacted more than 15,000 students and 5,000 faculty across member colleges in Chennai, Trichy, Madurai, Coimbatore and Salem.
Sharing his thoughts on the role he would like PALS to play, Prof M.K. Surappa, Vice Chancellor, Anna University, and the Guest of Honour, said, “The number of engineering colleges has increased exponentially in recent years. However, some of these affiliated institutions have difficulty in imparting engineering education at the same level as some of the top institutions. In the last four years, many engineering colleges have had trouble attracting students and have closed down. Perhaps, a body like PALS can prevent this from happening by focusing on elevating the quality of education.”
Further, he added, “The role of Social Sciences and Humanities have fast become vital for making engineers well-rounded. This has already come about in the West and now, in India too.”
In its seventh year now, PALS started as a series of motivational lectures given by IIT Alumni at various engineering colleges campuses in and around Chennai. The offerings have grown and evolved into the present format based on the feedback from the colleges, as well as from the changing market needs.
Sharing his thoughts on the role he would like PALS to play, guest of honour Prof Bhaskar Ramamurthi, Director, IIT Madras, said, “We have to empower our current generation coming out every year. PALS is a layer that can be added to the existing system to enable those youngsters who are hungry and eager to learn and want to go in a particular direction.”
Further, Prof Bhaskar Ramamurthi added, “PALS should work to increase the availability of knowledge, mentorship and getting the students to think differently. If we can provide these opportunities to students, whether they are looking to set up startups or are fascinated by research but are wondering how to do it or equip themselves, it will make a huge difference for some people and this is how PALS should measure itself.”
The objective of PALS has all along been on enhancing the quality of engineering education and making students graduating from these institutions, ‘industry ready.’ To achieve this, PALS has tapped into the vast pool of expertise available within the IIT alumni community across the corporate, academic and entrepreneurial domains.
Delivering the welcome address, Mr. Mohan Narayanan, Chairperson, PALS, said, “We now strongly believe an intelligent concoction of a supportive anchor institute, dedicated alumni network and industry can re-create this model anywhere else in our geographical educational ecosystem. PALS on its part will be more than happy to work with such dedicated groups and mentor them to create similar impactful models.”
Former Chairperson PALS Ms. Alamelu, rendering vote of thanks, said, “Tamil Nadu has been the cradle of Engineering. It is but befitting that any new initiatives in the field of engineering education would start in this land. And PALS is one such.”
PALS now offers holistic 360-degree approach to learning thereby positively impacting Students, Faculty, and Management of engineering institutions. The benefits obtained by the engineering colleges from PALS over the years has been found to be proportional to the interest and involvement shown by each of them in the program. PALS yearlong intervention includes below programs:
Student focused Initiatives: Faculty Focussed Initiatives:
- Campus Lectures 1. Visit to IIT Madras Research Park
- Theory to Practice (T2P) Lectures 2. Faculty Development Programs (FDP)
- innoWAH! Competition 3. RuTAG workshop
- Residential Student Workshop (RSW) 4. Industry Visits
- Industry Projects
Management focused initiatives:
- Inaugural event
- Industry – Academia Conclave
- Educational Excellence Summit