TAMIL NADU

Flurry of activity in Periyar University

Staff Reporter

SALEM: Periyar University has been witnessing a flurry of activities during the past 12 months. It has received 12 B Status from the University Grants Commission, established 12 research departments, introduced new courses and streamlined the examination system, its Vice-Chancellor, T. Balakrishnan, said. Addressing a press conference here on Tuesday, he said the university had also expanded the activities of Periyar Institute of Distance Education (PRIDE). The PRIDE had set up 100 study centres of which two were located abroad.

About 5,400 students enrolled in several distance education programmes. "Several international and national research organisations have replied positively to the university's requests seeking assistance for research. Our faculty have submitted research proposals to the tune of Rs. 2 crores to various institutions. Of which, a lecturer in the Department of Physics has won a prestigious fellowship from the Maxplanck Institute, Germany."

The varsity had also set up a publication division to bring out research journals and books. The Indian Red Cross Society took up the Blood Donors Directory released by the division as a model and sent it other universities asking them to prepare a similar one to help hospitals.

Infrastructure

The university had signed memorandums of understanding with associations and industries. The Department of Commerce was training field level employees of the Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) on behavioural and attitudinal change.

"We have trained about 2,000 BSNL employees in the university so far. We are also planning to train the middle-level managerial personnel," he said. Mr. Balakrishnan said the university earmarked Rs. 22 crores for developing new infrastructure facilities in the campus. Facilities such as buildings for new departments, students amenity centre, library and auditorium would be established shortly.

He said the university would conduct its fifth convocation on September 17 - the birthday of Periyar. The Governor of Karnataka, T.N. Chuturvedi would deliver the convocation address. The Chancellor of the university and Governor of Tamil Nadu, Surjit Singh Barnala, would preside. The Minister for Education and Commercial Taxes, C.Ve. Shanmugam, would participate in the function, he said. A total of 82 first rank medals and endowment medals would be presented to the students during the function.

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