Published: 02nd August 2019
IIT Madras at 60: Next target is more focus on high-quality research and start-ups
IIT Madras celebrated 60 years of excellence by becoming the top ranked engineering institute in India for four consecutive years
The Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT Madras) celebrated its 60 years of academic excellence, pioneering research and innovation on Wednesday on July 31. The institute now wants to focus more on high-quality research, job creation and start-ups.
The administration organised an elaborate event on campus to mark its diamond jubilee, during which achievements of the last six decades were remembered with faculty, staff, students, alumni and distinguished guests.
Among the many things it observed, IIT Madras celebrated becoming the top-ranked engineering institute in India for four consecutive years as well as emerging as the ‘Best Educational Institution’ in Overall Category this year in the NIRF Rankings put out by the Ministry of Human Resource Development.
Addressing the diamond jubilee celebrations at the campus on Wednesday, Karin Stoll, Consul General, German Consulate, Chennai, said, "The Federal Republic of Germany supported IIT Madras into becoming one of the premier institutions in the country. This was one of the largest technical cooperation projects taken up by Germany abroad. The first generation of Indian faculty received training in Germany through scholarships."
Further Stoll added, "The Indo-German Centre for Sustainability (IGCS) at IIT Madras is a particular asset to face the big challenges of our time. It is a platform to enhance cooperation among Indian and German scientists in the area of sustainability and growth. Today, we are not talking about only mechanical engineering but Artificial Intelligence and Internet of Things (IoT) and sustainability. IIT Madras also has academic agreements with 35 German Universities. I wish IIT Madras, on this occasion, all the best for years to come."
Some of the objectives and targets of IIT Madras in the years to come include:
- To be known as the best educational research institute in the country in all the areas they are engaged in
- To produce MS and PhD graduates with high employer reputation
- To make significant contributions to the technology needs of the nation
- To publish a large fraction of papers in top journals
- To nurture the unique strength of IIT Madras in research and development leading to technologies with immediate societal value (water, energy, housing, healthcare, education, etc.)
IIT Madras is known nationally and internationally for excellence in technical education, innovation, entrepreneurship and research besides industrial and educational consultancy. Its strengths include highly motivated and talented students, qualified and dedicated faculty and well-trained technical and administrative supporting staff.
Speaking about the institute's fruitful six decades, Prof Bhaskar Ramamurthi, Director, IIT-M, said, "This is a day for us to take stock and remember the wonderful 60 years this institution has gone through. On all counts, the Institute is on an exciting path. Our alumni have shown not only in their professional disciplines but in so many other ways that they can excel wherever they are. This is also an occasion for the alumni to reconnect with each other and with the Institute."
Former directors of IIT Madras Prof MS Ananth and Prof R Natarajan were honoured on the occasion. Prof Bhaskar Ramamurthi also felicitated the members of the Class of 1964, the very first batch to graduate from IIT-M.
The celebrations also featured a fashion show called ‘Woven Threads - 60 years of student fashion’ in which the current students showcased the evolution of campus student fashion through the past 60 years. A presentation on the many ‘Firsts’ of IIT Madras, presented by the Heritage Centre at the campus, brought out important developments such as the first women students to graduate from IIT Madras, the first research scholars and so on.
Speaking on the occasion, Prof Mahesh Panchagnula, Dean (International and Alumni Relations), remarked, "We are going to start an archive that will be home to our own cherished history in a formal way. We look forward to seeing it come online very soon."
On July 13, alumni of the institute spread across the globe came together to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee year in their respective cities. Shuba Kumar, President, Alumni Association, informed, "As many as 3,600 alumni got together in 60 cities across the world, from Seattle to Sydney, to celebrate 60 years of IIT Madras. Celebrations were also held in North America, India, South East Asia and Australia."