Migration of Tamils to other countries in search of jobs has increased the responsibility of Tamil University.

Tamil University is in the limelight now - thanks to the efforts taken by C. Subramaniam, its Vice-Chancellor. This year being the silver jubilee year, Dr. Subramaniam has used the opportunity for setting the agenda for the next ten years for the university. Impact of technology and policies like globalisation, privatisation and liberalisation have thrown many challenges at the university. Having come a long way, 25 years since its inception, it is time to redefine the university's goals, approach, and academic excellence, says C. Subramaniam. Amidst Pongal celebrations in the university Dr. Subramaniam squeezed time to talk to G. Srinivasan about Tamil University and its activities.

"I thought I will become a Vice-Chancellor of a university one day. But certainly not the Vice-Chancellor of Tamil University. Then, when I became the VC of Tamil University I felt really happy," says Dr. Subramaniam.

He did his B.Sc. Chemistry and joined the Pachiappa's College to secure a Master's degree in Tamil.After completing his post-graduation, he worked as a lecturer in Government Arts College, Udhagamandalam. Later, he joined Government Arts College, Coimbatore, and rose to become a Reader. Before coming to Tamil University, he worked as the Registrar of Bharathiyar University.

According to Dr. Subramaniam, the growth of Tamil University in the past 25 years was slow.

"I thought of making the university vibrant and useful to the people in this silver jubilee year and have initiated some measures," says Dr. Subramaniam.

A conference of vice-chancellors of Kannada, Telugu and Dravidian universities held in the university as part of sliver jubilee celebrations this year is an important milestone in the history of Tamil University, claims Dr. Subramaniam.

Yes, the sprawling Tamil University campus on 1000 acres looks clean and tidy. An appeal from the Vice-Chancellor, who himself started cleaning the campus one day, has brought all the staff, people living in adjacent villages, to join the cleaning work.

The University campus has now been thrown open for public to take a walk. Arrangements are made to play hymns from the Devaram, the Thiruvasagam and of other religions like Islam and Christianity, so that walkers can hear them while they take a stroll in the campus. The library was also thrown open for the public. "These may be small things. But they bring about community participation," he reasons

Dr. Subramaniam has met the President, A.P.J. Abdual Kalam, and invited him to participate in the silver jubilee celebrations.

"The President readily agreed and his visit will motivate teachers and students," opines Dr. Subramaniam.

Gone are the days when the university was confined only to research.

Now post-graduate courses are offered."The university has plans to introduce M.Sc. Computer Science and M.Sc. Environmental Science this year," the Vice-Chancellor said.

Migration of Tamils to other countries in search of jobs has increased the responsibility of Tamil University.

Tamils settled abroad want their children to learn the language and the university with the help of information technology can help them in this regard, he concludes.

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