Staff Reporter

MADURAI: The Chairman and Managing Director of National Thermal Power Corporation Limited (NTPC), T. Sankaralingam, will be the chief guest for the 40th Convocation of Madurai Kamaraj University to be held here on December 15.

Around 30,000 candidates who passed out of various courses in May 2006 under both regular and distance education streams from university and affiliated colleges will be awarded degrees.

The rank-holders and Ph.D. candidates will receive their degrees in person at the convocation to take place in the recently renovated Mu.Va Hall in the varsity campus.

P. Maruthamuthu, Vice-Chancellor, said on Wednesday that the NTPC chief was invited so as to enable students get a correct picture of the energy scenario and to make them understand the importance of thermal energy.

"People are not fully aware of energy sector. It is a vast area and the visit of Mr. Sankaralingam will help giving a complete perspective of the country's energy situation," the Vice-Chancellor said.

Dr. Maruthamuthu, who just returned after an official trip to America, said that the feasibility of opening a distance education centre at Washington was explored and a decision will be taken in the next few weeks.

He visited the Illinois Institute of Technology at Chicago where the possibility of having a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for offering courses jointly was discussed.

The Vice-Chancellor said that the degrees under consideration through such arrangement include MBA and also science courses in areas like biotechnology.

He also visited the International Tamil University in Washington to participate in a book release function.