Category: The CGPA
- 04 March 2013
For all those who have been awaiting the most wanted section of Monday Morning to be updated-here it is! Oh, well yeah it was a long time since the last interview. It is a general notion that professors who are friendly and chatter-box type are usually considered cool, but you have to admit that we have all met that one person, who doesn’t often speak much and maybe is mostly surrounded with books and journals but from them only you have heard the funniest of jokes and insane of possibilities. It’s not just some integrity store that makes someone glamorous but the gravity of their thoughts and their ability to stay focussed is what makes a person cooler. And this time in CGPA we bring to you the professor who is a book-worm, a first-bencher but still keeps it cool: Quite a deadly combo.
Category: The CGPA
- 08 October 2012
He has a PhD from Konkuk University, South Korea, which has produced eight Nobel Laureates. The world’s youngest professor, Alia Sabur, is a full-time faculty there. But read on before you draw a character sketch of Prof. Mukesh Gupta, Associate Professor, Department of Biotechnology & Medical Engineering. There’s more than the cover suggests!
Category: The CGPA
- 20 August 2012
On a comfortable and cozy evening, when classes for the entire day had got over and everyone was busy doing their leisure time activities, MM had visited the Department of Chemical Engineering to add one more professor to the CGPA - Professor Pradip Chowdhry, who is popular amongst his students for his dynamic and energetic approach towards teaching. “He is someone who literally compels us to think out of the box and makes us go beyond the classroom studies to pursue our interest in any field” adds his student. He shared with the CGPA the ups and downs of his journey-from his strict childhood to the present day of being a faculty in this renowned institution, and how he manages time for entertainment and gupshup in his packed schedule.
Category: The CGPA
- 30 July 2012
After the long and hot summer holidays of around 3 months the all new Monday Morning starts this section, CGPA, with one of the coolest professors in the Adda of our institute, who will soothe your heated souls and get you back to enjoying the fun days of hostel life.
Imagine yourself as a professor- taking classes, giving assignments, commanding respect, preparing mind boggling question papers , but for one of the alumni of NITR, there needs no imagining because this is what he’s doing from the last one year. Technically our senior and officially our professor, Professor Shantanu Behera, a professor at the Department of Ceramic Engineering, talks about his odyssey from an alumni to being a part of the faculty.
Hailing from Berhampur, Ganjam, Professor Behera completed his graduation in 1998 at NITR in Ceramic engineering. He was placed at Tata Refractories limited where he worked for a while and came back to join NITR as a junior faculty. This was when he was inspired by his professors to pursue higher education and he went to a small, yet pretty old and expensive Lehigh University for his doctoral degree in Material science and engineering. This led to his joining University of Colorado for his post doctorate degree, and then he decided to return back to India. Our Director Professor S.K.Sarangi was a great source of inspiration and was the ultimate reason that brought him back. “Professor Sarangi said ‘what we had to take from the US we have already taken, now don’t give anything back to them’ “.
Ever imagined who was the pioneer of all those painful birthday bumps??
In his own words “if I am not wrong I was the one who resurfaced the tradition”, which lead us to the ‘ultimate’ question of ragging. ‘’I was ragged but I never ragged’’, he said. They used to have a very tough administration and even tougher rules and ragging was an absolute no-no. Once in 2nd year, he had gone to a 1st year class regarding some work of a club after which he was dragged by the arm by a professor to the then Dean of Academics saying he was ragging the juniors! The club was none other than the club Rotaract and the professor is still a professor of our institute!!! Recalling his first year he says Engineering Mechanics was the most interesting subject of all. And did he bunk classes? “You need to have something better to do to bunk classes”. He remembers an incident when he needed a book and for this he went to Dr.Bhattacharya, who also didn’t have the book with him. The next afternoon Dr.Bhattacharya had cycled to hall-2 (where professor Behera stayed) to give him the book. “So you cannot bunk classes when you have professors like him”. He says his professors were very friendly as compared to other branches. They used to go for tea with them and even used to shift classes to other free slots.
When asked about what difference he sees in the students now he says,” The younger generation is always smarter. Now when I go to the hostels I see the corridors are deserted because now everybody is sitting inside their rooms and busy doing Facebook. In our times the rooms used to be empty and the corridors bustling. The adda-making tradition has decreased. People have lost the charm of book reading”.
He used go to movies and he recalls when “Rangeela” released the theatre was more than houseful. His other major other hobby was movies. He is an out-and-out movie buff. Al Pacino and Robert Di Niro are all time his favourites. He even used to write movie reviews in his personal blog.
Movies and music go hand in hand. He has a great passion for music also. He says it refreshes you. Though he doesn’t keep up with the latest releases he’s an ardent fan of Hindustani classical music. An ardent fan of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, he has recordings of his earlier performances and qawaalis that not many people have heard. However as with many classical fans he is not a fan of hard and metallic bands. The Beatles, Coldplay, U2, Evanescence are some of his western favourites. He is an admirer of Lady Gaga whom he considers a diva. Guitar Gods like Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton also fascinate him.
On a serious note, he says the sanctity of Engineering has gone down while that of a NITian has gone up. Talking about placements he adds, “If you are getting placed in an IT company then you fly in a business class and live a corporate life. Core companies are about nuts and bolts.” For him it was always about ‘flying free and being independent rather than being a bird in a golden cage’. But at the end of the day it’s about whether you define your degree or not. “Research is something for which you have to be strongly motivated. There is no material gain. Unless you let go the balance sheet thing you won’t be able to appreciate it”.
He has played “student Vs faculty” cricket matches, not to mention from both sides. Apart from music he likes travelling and has a great pull towards the mountains. “I am not much of a sea-shore guy. I wanted to live in Colorado for a year or two just to see the mountains”. He is a Master chef himself and specialises in kebabs. Cooking is his primary hobby. When he was abroad, during camping in the forest he used to serve kebabs prepared on charcoal fire. Though a great cook himself, he loves the dal and potato fry prepared by his mother. “The potato fry is heavens for me.”
His daughter, Srujani, would be a year old this 10th of August. MM team wishes her all the happiness and an advanced happy birthday!
As a message to students he says,” chill and enjoy. Live life as it goes by.” And when asked about something for his colleagues he says it would be good if they start coming out of their rooms and become friends with the students.