IMBIBING UNFLINCHING OPTIMISM: Dr. SIRSENDU SEKHAR RAY
Aug 24, 2015 | Seemadri Subhadarshini
Creative, compassionate, adaptable, passionate, empathetic, inspirational, resilient and patient- Dr. Sirsendu Sekhar Ray of the Department of Biotechnology and Medical Engineering, is indeed a man of substance. A smile that not only motivates and inspires but also instills vibrance in all his students, Dr. Ray is not just a faculty but a mentor, guide, realist and a visionary. He is associated with the Department of Biotechnology and Medical engineering right from its very inception. His mission is to improve human health through excellence in research and education at the interface of engineering, biology and medicine.
Dr. Ray was born and brought up at Port Blair in Andaman Nicobar islands where he completed his schooling up to Class 12th. Then, he pursued his M.B.B.S degree from Dr. Sampurnanand Medical College (SNMC) in the city of Jodhpur, Rajasthan. After completion of his MBBS degree, he qualified the MMST All India examination and studied MMST (Masters in Medical Science and Technology) in IIT Kharagpur for 3 years. Then he joined NIT Rourkela as an Assistant Professor in July 2008 and still continuing. Dr. Ray, from his very childhood was equally inclined to both medical and engineering field. But due to the continuous pursuance of his father, he in a way was compelled to join medical college. He mentions “In medical, I missed engineering and in engineering, I miss medical.”
He feels an absence of interdisciplinary system in India, where knowledge from various arenas could be combined together to solve a particular problem in the best possible way. He strives to establish a collaborative platform to integrate two dynamic fields of Engineering and Medicine with the objective of assisting in the struggle against illness and disease by providing tools and techniques for research, diagnosis and treatment.
His urge for innovation and improvisation made him follow his heart and choose an altogether different field than marching on the very conventional and traditional ongoing trend of medical profession. Neither his family nor his friends supported him in his decision. He mentions
Decision making becomes easy when you feel that you have a strong base to build upon and that base is your job and financial security. Follow what your heart says and do what makes you happy.
If provided an opportunity, he would love to practice medicine but presently, to broaden his outlook and knowledge in the domain of biomedical engineering, he is pursuing his PhD here in NITR.
Dr. Ray is one of the few easily approachable faculties in NITR who in a very calm and composed fashion deals with his students and colleagues. He is emotionally attached with his students, Department of Biomedical Engineering and NITR. He seeks a premiere and well-equipped work space for his students to brainstorm, design, and develop prototypes for solutions to real-world clinical and global health challenges. Apart from teaching, he loves to spend his free time with his family and friends.
He proclaims NITR’s biomedical department as the best under-graduate biomedical sect in India and is proud enough to be associated with it. With “being the best”, comes certain responsibilities. He continuously motivates his students to showcase their talents and contribute towards the betterment of the society. He feels that the government, the people, the institute and the faculties all are the stakeholders but the biggest amongst them are the students. He ceaselessly encourages his students to dream high and see the bigger picture. He has the most progressive pedagogy keeping pace with modern technologies and current advancements. He calls the Indian government to devise a fruitful propaganda to stop the brain drain.
Quite ironically, Dr. Ray amidst his busy schedule has almost forgotten what his hobbies were. He being quite energetic and enthusiastic loves to play cricket, football, chess etc and was also a part of his undergraduate college team. He feels that we haven’t yet reached our peak but every research success in the department makes him happy. According to him, there is a thin line between medical and engineering.
Medical is for the maintenance of health and engineering is that which propels the society forward. Our civilization is an outcome of our engineering sense but without health, progress is near to impossible. Collaborative work is the need of the hour.
He sets up the perfect and much needed student –teacher ambience.