The Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Kanpur is set to establish a medical college and, before that, a Center for Engineering in Medicine near its campus. The new centre will begin enrolling students from October, offering Masters and PhD level courses with nearly 50 seats. The medical college-cum-speciality hospital will have Master’s level courses.
Abhay Karandikar, director, IIT-K informed indianexpress.com, “We are preparing a detailed project report with the help of Tata Trust. It should be ready within two months and we will then propose it to the Ministry of Human Resource Development (HRD). The official announcement will be made thereafter.”
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As per the proposal, the institute is likely to set up a 20-acre 500-bed capacity super speciality hospital. While reports suggest that IIT-K would need around Rs 800 crore to realise the dream of a medical college, the director pointed out funding formalities are yet to be finalised.
“We already have a very strong biological discipline, including biosciences and bioengineering departments. Thus, we will begin by first setting up a centre for engineering in medicine from October. Candidates will be enrolled based on JEE and JAM scores. The medical college will begin by offering MD, MS (PG) levels, though we do wish to offer MBBS courses too in future,” remarked Karandikar.
The demand for the integrated study of engineering and biology has soared across IITs. Other than IIT-Kanpur, IIT-Delhi, IIT-BHU and IIT-Gandhinagar also have centres for biology-related studies. Keeping the increasing demand in mind, the Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE) 2020 — entrance exam for Master’s level courses at IITs — has introduced a new exam called Biomedical Engineering (BM) this year.
If the plan materialises, the IIT-K will not only be the first IIT but also the first-ever Indian engineering institute to have its own medical college.
Meanwhile, IIT-Kanpur has also launched a new PhD programme in partnership with Australia-based La Trobe University for a Joint PhD in Smart Cities. While the latter is known for its business courses, the two institutes have collaborated to provide a joint PhD programme under the Smart Cities initiative. A similar tie-up has also been set up with BITS Pilani and LA Trobe as well.