Updated: August 20, 2021 9:43:38 am
IIT Kanpur announced the setting up of a centre aimed at the integration of students from Hindi and other Indian languages (OILs) backgrounds. The centre will help students from across the country with a non-English medium of instruction at school.
The newly-instituted Shivani Centre for the nurture and re-integration of Hindi and other Indian languages will ensure the availability of the course content in regional languages to overcome the challenge of restricted job opportunities at the end of the academic programme. Students with Indian languages background are also known to face serious challenges such as social integration with their peers.
Most importantly they are unable to take full advantage of the opportunities for academic and personal growth because of the language barrier.
One of the objectives of the Shivani Centre is to focus on providing students with opportunities for self-expression and personal growth, guarding them against feelings of exclusion and isolation while allowing them to gradually integrate with a socio-academic milieu of the institute.
The centre will try to address these issues not only at the institute level but also in the context of higher education in the country in general by facilitating the creation of academic resources (STEM content, textbooks, references, digital tools) in languages other than English.
The centre is being established with a grant of $1 million from the Micky and Vinita Charitable Fund. Muktesh (Micky) Pant (BT/CH/76) is setting up this centre in the memory of his late mother Gaura Pant better known as Shivani. She was awarded Padma Shri by the Government of India for her contribution to Hindi literature in the year 1982.
Micky Pant, founder, Micky and Vinita Charitable Fund, said: “While knowledge of languages is always good, fluency in English should not be a factor in getting a top education in engineering. I hope it can now lead the way to nurture Hindi and other Indian languages and prepare for a future where digital technology allows students to excel in engineering irrespective of their fluency in English.”
The Shivani Centre will enable the dissemination of technological tools to increase the ease of use for Hindi and other Indian Languages (OILs) on digital platforms, socio-emotional integration of students from Hindi and other Indian Language backgrounds at IIT Kanpur, and promoting communication, literary and artistic expression using Hindi and OILs.
Abhay Karandikar, Director IIT Kanpur said: “It has been acknowledged that Indian languages are important for educational and cultural development as they strengthen equity in education. Students with Indian languages background face challenges in navigating the English language based course content and often face academic and social exclusion as a result. The Shivani Centre will ensure seamless integration of students of Hindi and OILs background at the institute and will fulfil the objectives laid out in National Education Policy (NEP) 2020.”
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