Authorities of the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur (IIT KGP) have hailed as “one of the highest achievement in academics” the nomination of one of its alumnus as Chancellor of the University of California, San Diego (UCSD)

Pradeep Kumar Khosla graduated in Electrical Engineering from IIT KGP in 1980. His nomination as UCSD Chancellor was announced last week and he is expected to take charge in August.

“A number of our alumni have made a mark in the corporate sector; some of them becoming CEO's of Fortune 500 companies. Although some of our alumni have been appointed deans in certain western universities, Mr. Khosla's nomination is the highest achievement in academics by our alumni,” said Amit Patra, Dean of Alumni Affairs, IIT KGP told The Hindu over telephone from Hyderabad on Wednesday.

Mr. Khosla, who is the Dean of Carnegie Mellon University's engineering college, has been visiting his alma mater and advising the institute on hiring faculty members.

Professor Patra said the institute had an agreement with UCSD for setting up a medical school and Mr. Khosla's elevation wouldenhance the cooperation between the two institutes.

Professor Patra said that the institute also had a number of collaborations with University of California, Berkeley and Mr. Khosla's appointment would strengthen the relations with the University of California family.

Recently the institute started a Centre of Bio Energy in collaboration with UC, Berkeley with a contribution made by one of its alumni, P.K. Sinha.

“In the last 10 years, our alumni have contributed a significant sum of about $ 20 million (Rs. 100 crore) to the institute. The other important role taken up by the alumni is serving as mentors of the institute in starting new programmes and disciplines,” Professor Patra said.