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An eclectic mix of minds

Specialised and technical training is the name of the game in Chennai — which attracts the best talent from across India

education Updated: May 25, 2011 09:23 IST
Rahat Bano

South India is big on technical education but some students from other parts of the country go there for higher studies in other streams too.

In Chennai, you can find non-south Indian students (including international) in institutions other than the famed Indian Institute of Technology Madras.

Students come in mainly from Maharashtra and then from places like Delhi and West Bengal, says Jayaprakash Gandhi, a career
consultant.

About student intake, G Ramamurthy, vice principal (administration), Loyola College, says many people come in from the North-East states, and even Bihar.

Moumita Paul from Kolkata says she chose to do her master’s in psychology from the University of Madras because of the HR
specialisation it offers.

Indeed.
Established in 1857, the University of Madras runs some unique study programmes. It has departments of Vaishnavism, Saiva Siddhantam, Jainology and

Christian studies.
“Ours is the only university which has some courses not available in other parts of India. We teach foreign languages such as German, Italian, Spanish and Russian too,” says G Thiruvasagam, vice chancellor, University of Madras.

Two of their alumni - CV Raman and S Chandrasekhar - won Nobel prizes while many others have led in various walks of life.
Chennai institutions stand out in their attempts and efforts towards training and placement of students. “Our programmes are application-oriented,” says

Thiruvasagam. “We have R300 crore worth of equipment with us. Students don’t have to go to other places or libraries for research work.”

If you look up the league tables, southern states have always been leaders in engineering education while north is ahead in management courses, says Gandhi.

However, “for BA, BSc, colleges like Loyola, Stella Maris and Ethiraj are always in the top 10,” he says.

“The admission process is transparent. The fee is not high. And additional facilities, training and placements are much better,” says Gandhi.

However, outstation students face a number of challenges, starting from the language. The only trouble is Tamil, which takes time getting used to! Give time to yourself and make a little effort to learn Tamil, because you do need to communicate to survive and find your way about the place!

Whether the other conditions are a challenge or normal, depends on your perspective. Gandhi says, “The culture is not as fast-paced as students expect in Delhi and Mumbai. And most colleges have dress codes, salwar kameez for women and formals for men.”

Hot Hangouts
.
Express Avenue, Royapettah
. Spencer Plaza, Mount Road
. Ampa Skywalk Mall, Nungambakkam
. Abirami Mall, Chetpet
. Marina Beach
. Ispahani Centre, Nungambakkam

Multiplexes
. Sathyam Cinemas, St Thomas Mount
. Escape, Express Avenue mall
. INOX, Citi Centre
. Mayajal, ECR
. EGA Theatres, Chetpet
. AGS cinemas, Villivakkam

Food Joints
This is something that should also be able to take care of your pocket! Some of the famous food joints that people often crowd during weekends and otherwise are:
. Sarvana group of hotels (They are here, there and everywhere and the main reason to visit these should be to taste authentic south Indian food)
. Murugan Idli Shop, Besant Nagar, T Nagar and Kilpauk
. Karthick Tiffin Centre, Anna Nagar (known to be open till 2am and for its signature ‘butter podi dosa’)
. Kebab Court, ECR
. Barbecue nation, Kodambakkam
. 10D, T Nagar