Sangeeth Kurian

The programme is specifically meant for students in government and aided schools.

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Young, aspiring science enthusiasts get an opportunity to make it big as scientists and researchers.

‘Inculcate,’ a scholarship programme aimed at identifying and nurturing young minds with talent for science and research, will be launched by the Education Department this year, in association with the Kerala State Science and Technology Museum.

The programme, specifically meant for students in government and aided schools, will be implemented in collaboration with the Kerala University, Mahatma Gandhi University, Calicut University, Kannur University and the Cochin University of Science and Technology.

Through the scholarship scheme, the Education Department hopes to extend the reach of the programme to children studying in schools in rural areas who receive far less opportunities than their urban counterparts.

“Fifty per cent of the scholarship will be awarded to students from rural areas,” said G. Arul Jerald Prakash, director in-charge of the science and technology museum.

Selection

The selection will be based on a written examination to be held at the 14 district headquarters next month.

Students who have completed Class VII are eligible to take the test.

“We are expecting around 7,000 students to take part in the screening test,” said Mr. Prakash. The short-listed 260 candidates, divided into groups, will attend a 10-day orientation programme at the five universities where they would learn about all the major academic disciplines on the campus. Accommodation for the students will be provided by the respective universities.

“The idea is to help children identify their future area of interest or specialisation,” said Mr. Prakash.

Scholarship

The orientation programme will select 57 candidates, including five students belonging to the Scheduled Caste/ Scheduled Tribe category, to receive scholarship of Rs.750 a month for five years, till they complete Plus Two. In addition to this, there will be a contingency amount of Rs. 2,500 to meet the expenses of purchasing scientific books and visits to research institutions, industries and other scientific establishments within the country.

A mentor too

What’s more, the selected students will also have the privilege to be mentored by an eminent scientist or a researcher who will guide them in completing their projects and other assignments on an individual basis.

The application forms for the screening test to be held on June 28 can be downloaded from www.kstmuseum.com, the web site of the Kerala State Science and Technology Museum.

The last date for receiving the application form is June 12.

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