TAMIL NADU

“Community college, a silent revolution in education”

Listing advantages: Latha Pillai, Pro Vice-Chancellor of IGNOU, speaking at the inauguration of Dr. Soundaram Community College in Gandhigram near Dindigul on Tuesday.

Listing advantages: Latha Pillai, Pro Vice-Chancellor of IGNOU, speaking at the inauguration of Dr. Soundaram Community College in Gandhigram near Dindigul on Tuesday.   | Photo Credit: — Photo: G. Karthikeyan

Staff Reporter

It will strive to develop skills and abilities of people in different fields, says Pro Vice-Chancellor Latha Pillai

DINDIGUL: Community colleges will develop skills and abilities of people at various levels in different fields as it is essential for development of nation and growth of economy, according to Latha Pillai, Pro Vice-Chancellor, Indira Gandhi National Open University.

Inaugurating Dr. Soundaram Community College in Gandhigram Trust at Gandhigram near here on Tuesday, she said that the community college was an opportunity for students who could not or might not go to regular colleges. The main aim was to empower individuals through appropriate skilled development leading to gainful employment. It would benefit the marginalised and underprivileged sections of the society.

The IGNOU has been serving educational aspirations of two million students in India and 33 countries. The college has been offering several courses from bee keeping to poultry farming and para-medical courses to early child hood care education. You name any field, there would be one programme in that field in any one of the community colleges, she added. Programmes could be designed to suit local needs and requirements.

It would meet the needs of people in unorganised sector that has provided a large number of job opportunities in the country, she added. “Community college is a silent revolution in the field of education and the IGNOU is only a catalyst. Voluntary individuals, NGOs, charitable trusts, educational institutions and corporate bodies man 100 community colleges.”

Gandhigram Rural University (GRU) Vice-Chancellor SM Ramasamy said the GRU would act as think tank of the college and jointly do research activities to guide the society.

Faculty and expertise of the university would be fully offered for the development of the college, he assured.

Community College Director G. Pankajam said the college has offered seven courses, including certificate course in organic farming and information technology, diploma in early child care and education, health assistant and SHG and federation management and an associate degree course in clinical assistant. The classes may be held either as full time or part time, in evenings or week ends.

It would also upgrade skills of employed ones who could not go to regular college.

Sixty students have joined the college so far.

Students of this college could continue their studies in any community college across the country to completed the course.

Gandhigram Institute of Rural Health Trust Director Lalitha Kabilan said the college would make students employable.

Regional Director of IGNOU M. Shanmugam, trust secretary M.R. Rajagopalan, managing trustee R. Kousalya Devi and associate secretary Treasurer K. Shivakumar took part.

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