A Walk Down The Memory Lane: 1st NITRAA Annual Alumni Meet
As distinguished alumni from several batches of National Institute of Technology Rourkela (NITR) poured in on the 22nd of December, 2016 amidst visible energy and excitement, the auditorium at Tech Mahindra, Hyderabad came to life. This was the very first time that an event of such stature has been observed in the history of NITRAA, where the Director, the Deans and several current students, all cumulatively graced the occasion with their presence.
The event began with the lamp-lighting ceremony followed by the welcome address by Mr. V.N. Peri, President of the National Institute of Technology Rourkela Alumni Association (NITRAA). A special video contrasting the present NITR with the one back in older days revived a horde of memories amongst the gathering. Next up was a panel discussion, where notable alumni from various walks of life were invited as panelists and engaged in a brainstorming session, with the audience raising questions actively. Following this was a presentation by the Director, Prof. Animesh Biswas, and a student, Shaswata Bisi, enlightening the audience about the expectations of the institute from its alumni.
Several crucial points like how one can contribute to the society and the role of government in raising standards were touched upon in another discussion. After these engaging panel discussions, the alumni were escorted for a group photo session and lunch. Post lunch, three breakout sessions went on simultaneously on the methods to augment the institute, alumni and student outreach, where everyone voiced their opinions and conclusions were reached upon. The third and final panel discussion followed and culminated in a talk filled with nostalgia by two retired professors and finally the vote of thanks.
Following were the topics discussed in the panel discussions that transpired and the respective group of alumni and students who actively contributed to the same, as panellists and moderators:
Panel Discussion 1 - ‘Innovators and Disruptors’
Panelists: Anustup Nayak (Vice President of X Seed Education)
Arvind Pani (Co-founder, Riverie Technologies)
Shivalik Prasad (Executive Director, MapmyIndia)
Sulakshan Kumar (Co-founder, MySmartPrice)
Moderator: C. P. Gurnani (CEO, Tech Mahindra)
Panel Discussion 2 - ‘Movers and Shakers’
Panelists: Padmashri N. R. Mohanty
C. P. Gurnani (CEO, Tech Mahindra)
Ansuman Dash (Member, Public Enterprise Selection Board)
Nikunja Dhal (Central Health Secretary)
Moderator: V. N. Peri (Global Partner, PwC)
Panel Discussion 3 - ‘Celebrating Women Alumni’
Panelists: Anita Tripathy (President, India at Inventive Health)
Archana Mallik (Assistant Professor, National Institute of Technology, Rourkela)
Prativa Mohapatra (Vice President, IBM)
Stuti Shukla (Chief Marketing Officer, GE Healthcare)
Sasmita Biswal (Managing Director, Technology, Accenture)
Moderators: Ms. Farhana Haque (Head, Internet of Things, Vodafone India)
Payal Agarwal (Student, National Institute of Technology, Rourkela)
On the second day i.e. 23rd of dec, some of the alumni, the Director, the Dean and the students went for a recreational visit to the Ramoji Film City, one of the major tourist attractions of Hyderabad. It was fun filled with warmth as the alumni brought up old stories and experiences to share with the students.
This was a milestone in the sense that it was a confluence of alumni transgressing the many regional boundaries and batches. There was an encompassing sense of warmth and affection palpable among the alumni and the event concluded with several promises and renewed hopes to raise the standards of the institute manifold.
Dushyant Mishra, 1996 alumnus, founder of Xtory and one of the organizers, was overwhelmed with the success of the event and hopes for the event to be an even bigger hit the next year:
“We alumni are very well connected through local chapters but this was a great effort in bringing alumni all over the country across all batches and some current students together. Now that this has to be taken forward, students need to take the initiative of reaching out to alumni as they are the biggest beneficiaries.”
C.P. Gurnani, CEO of Tech Mahindra, was all praises for the work that the Director, Prof. Animesh Biswas, put in to make the event a roaring success:
“Besides the fun, frolic and fiesta, there were a lot of commitments made for benefit of the student community and the institute as a whole. The compassion of the Director of NITR was praiseworthy as he was very receptive to all the suggestions put forth by the alumni. I and the entire Tech Mahindra group are happy to host this meet. I look forward to more such meets every year.”
For more details, you may check out the following pages:
Official website: www.nitraa.org