A Genial Symposium: NITRAA 2.0
The community of early graduates of REC initiated the Old Boys Association, as a networking body to keep the alumni’s connected to their alma- mater. Standing firm to the test of time, this humble alumni organization has come a long way to become what is today known as NITRAA, as arguably one of the largest alumni organization in the nation.
Serving as the largest annual forum to bring together alumni from various diverse backgrounds and to celebrate the glory they have ushered on our institute, the 2nd NITRAA Annual Day Meet held at Pune from 15th - 17th December 2017, at Tech Mahindra Campus Hinjewadi. The event was graced by notable alumni including former Chairman, Hindustan Aeronautics Limited and Padmashri N. R. Mohanty, CEO, Tech Mahindra, C. P. Gurnani, former Chairman, IIT Kharagpur Damodar Acharya, former CEO, Reliance Jio, Sandip Das, and Inspector General of Police Services Gurjinder Pal Singh, among others. Dean Academics, Prof. K. K. Mohapatra, Dean Alumni Relations, Prof. Sukhdev Meher and Registrar, Shri S. K. Upadhyay, also attended the meet.
The 3-days long event kick-started on the chilly evening of 15 December 2017 when Mr. C. P. Gurnani hosted a welcome dinner for all the attendees at the Tech Mahindra Gardens. The fun-filled evening saw alumni interacting with each other and reminiscing their good old days.
The following morning of 16 December witnessed one of the most impactful and noteworthy sessions as the panel discussions were started. The first-panel discussion focused on ‘ How Technology and Innovation can help our law enforcement and Police forces to fight the war against left-wing terrorism’, with Mr. Venkat Peri (’91, MCA) playing the moderator. Vikas Kendra concept of education and introduction of technologies like mobile phones and internet access to remote areas were discussed.
It was followed by the second-panel discussion with Mr. Maheswar Sahoo, Mr. Lalit Das, CMD of Police Housing Corporation, Mr. Balabhadra Majhi, MP, Nabrangpur, Odisha and Mr. Sandip Das as panelists with Anustup Nayak (’96, Metallurgy & Material Science) acting as the moderator. Emphasizing on “Innovations in Services”, the discussions revolved around solving issues of agencies like network, transport etc, the creation of mobile applications related to the technology needed by common man, implementation of techniques to spread knowledge about agriculture and seeking help from CIITs.
Moderated by Ms. Deepa Kapil, and with Mr. Anustup Nayak, Mrs. Anita Tripathy (President, Inventive Health Clinics), Mr. C. P. Gurnani, Mr. Abhishek Pattanaik, and Mr. Indranil Sarkar (Principal consultant of TATA Consultancy Services) as panelists, the third panel discussion was based on ‘ Material Science, Life Science and Information Technology’. Potential innovations in the field of medicine, education, and technology were put forth and eminent breakthroughs such as IOT Technology, Cyber Warfares, Security threats and Medical Active Implant projects were also reviewed and analyzed.
The fourth and final panel discussion of the annual day was on the topic ‘ What and how can we help NITR?’. The panel constituted of the likes of Mr. SK Upadhyay, Dr. Sukhdev Meher, Dr. KK Mohapatra (As the director of NITR Prof Animesh Biswas could not attend the meet thus Prof KK Mohapatra served as his representative), Mr. Rohit Ajaria with Dr. Damodar Acharya and Leo Paulose serving as moderators.The topics that formed the gist of the longest panel discussion were the suggestions and plans to improve education and its application to real-life problem-solving. Another suggestion which was stressed upon was to follow a general curriculum for the first 2 years for the undergraduate courses and then teaching the subject of their respective majors in the final and pre-final years, thus ensuring a co-existing and interrelated engineering environment of education. The main motivation behind the suggestion being, the fact that most projects that are currently being pursued involve engineers from many streams and courses of study. Thus having a loose curriculum cutting across branches does encourage inter-disciplinary research activities. Further deliberation also ensued on the introduction of micro-specialization in courses to be provided to the students and discussions on a potential plan of action for the same. To inculcate practical work exposure and to blur the line between the course content and industrial applications, suggestions and work paths were provided to include industry detours, courses from industry experts-as adjunct faculty members. Also, a proposal for incubation fund for the aspiring entrepreneurs of NITRAAn’s was also put forth.
The panel discussions also involved initiatives on the growth and transformation of NITR in various fields like reconstructing the curriculum, implementation of design thinking, the development of School of Management, co-creation of innovation labs and the development of the overall research fraternity.
The work done by NITRAA in the past year was reviewed, the plans for the year to come was discussed and a decision was taken to work diligently upon the topics discussed in the panel discussions with one alumnus from each panel serving as an ambassador for the initiative.
Just after the end of the 2nd-panel meeting and before the gallery photo shoot and lunch was the launch of the curtain raiser video, curated and assembled by the Videography & Design team of the student team, with Abodid Sahoo heading the contingent.This was met with applause and was followed by the group photo session.
With the lunch break serving as an interlude, the event resumed with the felicitation of the entire student team for their efforts since the closure of the 1st Annual day meets at Hyderabad. With the end of the 4th and final panel discussion of the event, a gala dinner hosted at the campus marked the end of the day.
The following morning, all the participants for the event proceeded to the amusement park, Imagica for the outbound event of the day. Once there, all the alumni and their families rejoiced with all that the theme park had to offer and as the sun was about to set, the day and the event came to a successful end. The alumni meet was renewed for a third session, to be tentatively hosted at DELHI in the forthcoming year.
Upon interviewing the Student Team Leader, Himanshu Shekhar (a third-year undergraduate student of Department of Metallurgy and Materials Science) about the working structure of the student team and the motivation and target, he was quoted saying
The work for the 2nd NITRAA Annual day had begun right after the Hyderabad meet came to a close. We have 5 sub-teams working towards the common goal, namely Calling Team, Database Team, Website Team (The soon to be online NITRAA website is being designed by this team) , Design Team and the Newsletter team. The work done by the team in the month of November and December has been pretty intense and also Venkat Peri (President NITRAA) and Leo Kurian Paulose(Conference Convenor) have been very good at managing and communicating with the student team and the various Alumni Chapter Heads thus ensuring a smooth governance of the events to follow. As a result of this, we were able to step up our game, as the attendance of the event rose from the past year.Also, we were able to bring back almost a 100% of the previous attendees to this session.
The event was a huge success and served as a platform to reunite the members of the alumni fraternity, but NITRAA is hopeful to grow over the years to come and as quoted from Leo Paulose (Conference Convenor)
This year NITRAA Annual Day focused on taking NITRAA and NIT to the next level. There is so much to be done and so little time.Let's make awesomeness happen.
For further details, kindly check:
Official website: http://www.nitraa.org