Inspirations

As my college days come to an end, I’ve been frequently flipping through my memories of four unforgettable years spent in this wonderful campus. When I look back, there are some things that stand out, that left profound and lasting impression on me.

One such thing, possibly the one that influenced me the most, was the association with Deepak sir, and hence a group of faculty members(Ramkumar sir- aka Ramuettan, Raghu sir, Murali sir aka MuSa) who are concerned about things beyond academics and think differently. In a way, my association with these incredible people strengthened my thirst for Life and inspired me to look beyond conventional options after BTech.

I first met Deepak sir in the fourth semester, when I went to get his signature for some permission requests for FOSSMeet 2008- he was the faculty-in-charge. He had just joined NITC that semester. But my most vibrant memories are from my third year, when we, a group of students who were Free Software enthusiasts, got together to form a FOSS Cell.

Deepak sir and Murali sir were our mentors and they did an excellent job of inspiring us and maintaining the enthusiasm. But I realize now, that their influence go far beyond free software, and the close association with especially Deepak sir and the conversations we had have really left a lasting impression on my mind.

Ramkumar sir is a 1989 REC batch alumnus. He’s a person who has seen the REC campus in its zenith of intellectual pursuits and social cohesion, and is one who laments all that has been lost since the institute has been converted into an NIT. To be honest, none of us were very impressed with his classes on Microprocessors and Microcontrollers, but outside the classroom he’s a walking legend. From Gabriel Garcia Marquez to the food at Chechi’s to the student life at NITC, you’ll never fail to be captivated by his words.

One of my most unforgettable memories of college are of the drama performed by the faculty members on the Staff Cultural Day (or something like that- don’t remember what it was called. But there has never been anything like that before or since then). The drama was written and directed jointly by Deepak sir and Raghu sir. It’s a wonderful portrayal of the contrasts between life in NITC/REC now and 20 years ago. It also sarcastically highlights some of the atrocities committed by the NIT administration over the last few years. The play was performed by faculty members and every one of them did incredibly well. I’ll never forget it in my life.

Deepak sir and Ramkumar sir left NITC in July 2009, at the beginning of our seventh semester. And our department again quite noticeably returned to its dull, monotonous, conformist ways. Though they were here for just three semesters, they influenced a lot of us students in many ways- we and our immediate juniors are the lucky ones to have known them.

Anyway, I consider myself unbelievably lucky to have known these people and am proud to say that I’ve been influenced a lot by their thoughts and words.

5 thoughts on “Inspirations

  1. Really an amazing and well written blog about our most inspiring and captivating faculty members of ECE Dept. I think I must correct the above sentence. Actually there the best in the college during our course.

    Deepak sir and Ramkumar sir have actually been a truly inspiring. I have been really lucky to have been in Deepak sir’s class for two semesters and Ramkumar sir had taken value education for us in S4.

    They really were the backbone of revolution in NITC during tenure. I still remember the proposal Deepak sir had put forward for B.Tech. curriculum. http://deepakwrites.blogspot.com/2009/03/engineering-education.html

    It is what NITC needed and needs. As the intake in NITC has almost doubled in last few years, I think the quality of students has come down. Present curriculum is not suited for all 150 students in ECE. Nobody can expect all of them to perform like the opener in the branch. Its observable from the fail percentage in a particular course in different batches.

    What I see among my classmates and juniors is that they are not able to cope up with the prescribed syllabus. They keep on complaining about the educational system.A curriculum, like the one suggested by Deepak sir might have brought the change. It was an essential change. But, once Deepak sir and Ramkumar sir left, I have not seen or heard of any further steps taken in that direction.

    With the current circumstances, and expecting the intake to increase again by 9%, I would like to see the quality of students graduating from NITC after a few years. Let’s hope that name NITC does not fade away.

    Amarnath

    1. To be fair, the number of theory courses has been reduced from 6 per semester to 5 in the 2010 curriculum (or so I’ve heard). Though they have left, their influence may not have faded completely. Also, Sameer sir was telling us that they are re-introducing supplementary exams to reduce the pressure on those with back papers.

      But I think there’s a limitation to the impact a curriculum review can have. Much of the problem lies in the mindset of the students, most of whom(like me) end up here just because they used to be good at cracking exams. Yes, it’s true that a lighter curriculum would give such people more time to explore other avenues.

      But as I was saying, the influence that Deepak sir and Ramkumar sir had goes far beyond academics. One of the main problems with the current student community and the atmosphere in the campus, is the passivity of students. Everyone seems to be lost in his/her own virtual world and are not interested or even aware of issues just outside their immediate field of concern. Sameer sir was saying the other day that today’s students just don’t have the will to respond to anything.

      Even now all that remains of NITC is the name that our alumni have created over the decades. And we are fast forgetting what made NIT/REC great in the first place.

    1. @Ayyappadas

      Thank you so much for dropping by and leaving a comment.

      Beautiful post, yours. You must have seen yourself the transition from REC to NIT and the changes that it brought along with it. Dhanaraj sir(you must be knowing him- he was ECE 1999-2003 batch) was talking to me about it one day.

      1. Thanks.

        Yes, in fact it was our batch who witnessed the transition from the closest distance. We spend 2 years as CRECians and 2 years as NITCians. Things changed a lot; especially the attitude of students. Although NITC brought a huge development in infrastructure, it virtually killed the zest and enthusiasm of the campus life. Looking back and after watching my juniors, I do feel that there is no requirement for putting excessive academic pressure. It doesn’t do any good in the longer run.

        I have been to IIT’s, IISc, Indian Statistical Institute Kolkata (joined for M.Tech there), JNCASR etc. It could be my bias that makes me tell this, but REC days were the best except for the inefficiency of the Calicut University.

        I know Dhanraj. He was our senior. So do I know Murali Krishnan Sir of CSE. I believe they too would recognize me.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s