Education Plus

Seven off-beat courses at Indian colleges

Reaching new heights. Photo: Special Arrangement  

The 21st century generation has broken the chains of conventional doctor-engineer paths and moved on to slightly more creative ones. Various off-beat courses are available in India today, that are helping to widen the scope of career choices for students. Here's a look at some off-beat courses.

Alcohol Technology
University: Vasantdada Sugar Institute, Maharashtra

As fascinating as this course sounds, it doesn’t involve any debauchery as suggested by the name. Vasantdada Sugar Institute (VSI) was established in 1975 by sugarcane growers to carry out all scientific, technical and educational functions relevant to the sugar industry.

They also have a Department of Alcohol Technology that has been working towards helping the distillery industry. Their main work involves perfecting ways to increase the productivity of this industry by developing and adopting better technology.

The department offers three types of courses and also conducts national-level workshops.

Carpet Technology
University: The Indian Institute of Carpet Technology, Allahabad

As unusual as it sounds, this institute has been set up by the Indian Ministry of Textiles. The Indian Institute of Carpet Technology (IICT) aims at supporting the carpet and allied textile industries by increasing skilled labourers and technical support.

The syllabus of the programmes covers both practical as well as theoretical understanding of the process of dyeing, textile fibres, carpet washing, and so on.

It also has a range of regular, distance and short-term courses.

Mountaineering
University: Nehru Institute of Mountaineering

If you like living on the edge, enrolling for the mountaineering course at Nehru Institute of Mountaineering might be the best decision you make. ITBP’s Mountaineering and Skiing Institute, The Jawahar Institute of Mountaineering and Winter Sports in Pahalgam, Atal Bihari Vajpayee Institute of Mountaineering and Allied Sports in Manali, Himalayan Mountaineering Institute in Darjeeling and Sonam Gyatso Mountaineering Institute in Gangtok, are some of the other institutes that provide this course. There are mainly two levels of training, after which you can either become an instructor or take up a career in mountaineering and allied sports.

Puppetry
University: Mumbai University

The Mumbai University offers a four-month part-time puppetry course that one can take after completing class XII. Puppetry is one of the oldest forms of entertainment in the country which has time and again found ways to revive itself, proving its importance in Indian arts and culture. The Calcutta Puppet Theatre will also soon start a puppet academy which will cover all theoretical and practical aspects of the art.

Bachelor in Rural Studies
University: Bhavnagar University, Gujarat

This course is a great start for anybody interested in exploring and understanding the rural side of our country. The syllabus covers a range of topics such as animal husbandry, forestry, farm management, child development, agriculture, environment management and community development. Several colleges across Gujarat, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh offer similar courses, post which one can apply for jobs at various government and private organisations and NGOs that work for rural issues.

Astrobiology
University: Indian Astrobiology Research Centre, Mumbai

The questions surrounding the existence of extraterrestrial life still remain unanswered. For all the space-buffs out there, Astrobiology can quench your thirst. Not only does it deal with the study of origin, evolution and distribution of life in the universe, but also probes into the possibility of extraterrestrial life. This course is offered by the Indian Astrobiology Research Centre (IARC), which is an autonomous scientific body that conducts and encourages theoretical research in the field. IARC also offers a diploma course in the field of Astronomy and Cosmology, Space Sciences and Evolution.

Gandhian Thought
University: Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University, Nashik

If you have always been fascinated by Gandhi's way of life and have wanted to understand it better, you can join the Gandhi Vichat Darshan programme, a one-year diploma course offered by Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University.

It includes the study of his life, philosophy and methodology, apart from the Ahimsa and Satyagraha movement.

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Printable version | Jan 18, 2021 7:23:30 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/education/seven-offbeat-courses-at-indian-colleges/article8630086.ece

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