Meet the winners of the MBDA scholarships

  • Aanchal Bedi, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: May 14, 2014 15:03 IST

Seven Indian graduates, aged between 21 and 25, from various Indian institutions of higher ­education have been selected for the MBDA ­scholarship ­programme this year. Students were selected by an ­admissions panel constituted and ­administered independently by the ISAE, one of the world’s leading institutes in aeronautics, located in Toulouse, France. Selection was based on documents submitted along with a statement of purpose, letter of recommendation, academic score and ­extracurricular activities.

The ISAE-MBDA scholarship covers full tuition fee waiver (7,000 euros per year per student for the two years of the programme), stipend for living expenses (5,000 euros), free student visa, medical insurance coverage for the duration of the programme and assistance to find affordable ­student accommodation in France.

The Ambassador of France to India, Francois Richier, met the students at his residence in New Delhi. At a reception for them, he said, “All engineers ­contribute to their nation’s ­technological and ­industrial progress. The bright young Indian students who have been chosen by MBDA, a ­European missile company and ISAE (Higher Institute of Aeronautics and Space, France) will do even more. They will play their part in preparing the future of the relationship of France
and India.”

Sachin Fernandes, who will be pursuing master of science in aerospace mechanics and ­avionics at ISAE, Toulouse, says, “France offers quality ­education with various educational ­benefits. This is why I chose France for higher ­education. Also, the presence of ­multinational ­aerospace ­companies such as Airbus, Dassault Aviation etc. will help me gain expertise in the field of aerospace engineering.

ISAE’s interdisciplinary teaching approach and faculty from renowned R&D centers and industries is what ­attracted Aditya Navale. “Toulouse has an active R&D base in the field of aeronautics. This will ­provide an ideal platform to gain ­practical knowledge.”

Besides meeting the eligibility criteria, students need to write a statement of purpose. Explains Fernandes, “While preparing the statement of purpose, a student has to mention the ­following points: a) What course is he/she applying to and why? b) What is his/her future goal? c) What influenced him/her to choose that course? d) What made the student to apply to the particular university and to the programme? e) Where does the student see himself/herself in the next ten years and how will they contribute to the society?”

Deepali Singh, who will ­pursue an MS in aircraft mechanics and avionics, says, “How focused a student is should be reflected in the statement of purpose. Past projects and the future plans should be ­clearly mentioned. Projects, research papers and a good CGPA will add value to your application. And if most of the projects are focused on a single area, then they will have more weightage.”

For Neelam Shivhare, her bachelor’s degree in ­engineering was enough to get this ­scholarship. “I studied hard during four years of graduation. I did international projects and presentations to enhance my profile. Also, getting a good GRE and IELTS score is mandatory.”

Loic Piedevache, MBDA ­country head , India, said, “This scholarship programme is one of the many initiatives that MBDA is ­undertaking to establish itself as a trusted, long-term partner within India’s defence ­industry infrastructure. Furthermore, like all Indian holders of French ­master’s degrees and PhDs, the students will also be entitled to a five-year Schengen visa.”

In 2015 and 2016, two more batches of eight students will be selected for the MBDA ­scholarship programme.

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