‘Super 30', which provides free coaching to underprivileged Indian Institute of Technology aspirants, received praise from United States President Barack Obama's special envoy Rashad Hussain, who termed it the “best” institute in the country.
“Super 30 is the best institute in India and an example of change, a dream which U.S. President Barack Obama harbours in the field of education, irrespective of caste and creed,” Mr. Obama's special envoy to the Organisation of the Islamic Conference said here.
“In India wherever I have gone, I find it the best thing I have come across.”
After meeting students at the institute, the envoy, accompanied by officials of the U.S. Consulate in Kolkata, said he was overwhelmed by the academic atmosphere on the campus.
The institute, which was recently featured by Time magazine as “the best school in Asia,” has the distinction of all its 30 students making it to the prestigious IITs for the third consecutive year.
“This is a very good beginning. People irrespective of caste and creed are living like members of a community. And back in the U.S., I will discuss the experience of ‘Super 30' and ‘Samman' and explore if anything could be done there,” Mr. Hussain, an Indian-American whose father hailed from Bihar, said. Mr. Hussain visited the ‘Samman Foundation,' which provides healthcare services to rickshaw pullers, their family members and the unorganised migrant labourers, on Saturday.
He assured the students at the institute, founded by mathematician Anand Kumar, that he would convey their invitation to Mr. Obama to visit them during his coming India visit.
The Obama administration was committed to bringing social harmony, just as it was maintained under the roof of ‘Super 30,' he said.
Mr. Anand Kumar, who himself could not pursue higher studies abroad due to poverty, has been giving full scholarships, including travel and stay, to a select batch of 30 poor students since 2002.
Altogether 212 of the 240 ‘Super 30' students have cleared one of the country's toughest exams during the last eight years. Discovery Channel had also made an hour-long documentary on the institute.