Monday, September 1, 2014

Pros & Cons of Graduating From SRM University

PG admissions in Science & Humanities are now open at SRM.

Enrolments for its flagship BTech program is getting finished at SRM University, after its record-setting SRMEE which saw 2.12 lakh students participating.

SRM Chancellor TR Pachamuthu came third in the Perambalur Lok Sabha constituency ahead of Congress, and Tamilnadu Makkal Congress candidates, but behind the winning AIADMK candidate and the runner-up DMK candidate.

But Pachamuthu has won in a way, as his alliance - the NDA - is ruling the country now.

SRM too had reasons to cheer as this year’s chief guest at their convocation - Narendra Modi - is now the Prime Minister of India.

Admissions that are now remaining open at SRM include PG courses in various science and humanities streams.

Self-financing universities like SRM are not likely to be the first choice of students, but if they are unable to get into any mainstream college or university that offers high-quality subsidized education, institutions like SRM comes into their focus, provided they can afford it.

At over 33,000 students, his SRM University is one of the largest self-financing private universities in the country, ahead of even single-campus wonder Lovely, and next only to multi-campus phenomenon Amity.

And SRM is not known for low or reasonable fees. But SRM students don’t mind a damn, as they hail from 48 different countries, and they very well know that their parents can afford SRM. And what you get in return for the high fees compensates the pain, if any.

If money can create a great educational enterprise out of nothing, it is SRM. Its main Kattankulathur Campus in Kancheepuram near Chennai is a 250 acres affair. A Central Library with vast resources, air-conditioned auditorium that can accommodate over 4,000 people, IT and Knowledge Management system supporting over 5,000 computer systems and IT applications of the University, 32 megabytes per second Internet Connection, modern Lecture Halls & "Smart Classrooms", wireless-enabled lab and campus, language lab - specializing in English, German, Japanese, French & Chinese, are only some of the academic facilities.

Support facilities include around 40 Buses - AC & non-AC - that ply regularly between the college and the city, 15 Canteens - from fast-food to full-fledged cafeterias spread throughout the campus, retail outlets - Higginbothams book store, Airtel phone booths, Reynolds teller machines, Super Markets, Reliance Webworld with Java Cafe - all within the campus, a 3-Star SRM Hotel, and prayer halls for all major religions, are only some of the outstanding features of this 42-block masterpiece design.

Though the other campuses at Ramapuram & Vadapalani (both at Chennai), and at NCR are relatively smaller, they too are not behind in offering state-of-the-art amenities.

SRM also has extensive and modern hostel facilities, complete with not only South Indian and North Indian cuisine, but with Chinese, Thai, & Continental cuisines for catering to the tastes of its international students.

One can practically study any subject of one’s choice - everything from humanities to medicine and everything in between. Placements too are available for the hardworking students.

Of course, it is another matter whether money can create a great university. Chancellor TR Pachamuthu has gone that extra mile to attract top-talented students to his institution, through various scholarship schemes, but the very fact that such an artificial step has to be adopted for attracting quality, means that the quality-strategy at SRM is not holistic.

Also, no one expects SRM, or any private university for that matter, to do anything beyond namesake charity. The only way out from this quality jinx is industry or philanthropy founded endowments, but that would again naturally flow towards the nation’s premier institutes due to their sole focus on merit, public nature, as well as higher transparency. No business house or donor wants to help a for-profit institute even if it is called a university.

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