With its quiet surroundings, spacious classrooms and modern laboratories, Kelkar Education Trust's VG Vaze College in Mulund is set to turn 25 in June. The college boasts of being the first to get the Best College Award from the University of Mumbai.
Built on 1,80,000 sq ft, the 'A' grade college is a popular among students wishing to pursue the science stream in the eastern suburbs.
The new academic year will see the cosmetology lab being opened to MSc students.
The mass media department is set for a technological uplift too with a new editing room. The canteen is also up for expansion, with an open-air eatery planned.
"We are waiting for the government to give its approval. Once acquired, it will make way for the plush sports complex and a new building for the self-financing courses," said Principal G.T. Paratkar.
The college has a very active theatre team, VeeThee, which has won 154 awards in the last academic year.
Vaze is a rare college which gives sports its due. Volleyball, basketball, softball, tennis or gymnastics, name it and you have a number of national and even international medal holders. For the last five years, the college has been organising the Kelkar Sports
Camp for children between six and 16 years during summer vacation.
"The college is good in terms of facilities, faculty and staff, but it can improve further," said Siddharth Hirwe, a mass media student.
Their annual fest, Dimensions, is also a big draw in the central suburbs. Students run the Hiker's Club and the Vaze Research Group among other groups.
"The college works hard to get the students to develop themselves in all spheres. Its among the only colleges that pay equal attention to academics and extra-curricular activities," said Nafisa Shaikh, a parent.
Students hang out outside the old buildings that flank the road, and there is also a popular golawalla around.
Kelkar Education Trust's Vinayak Ganesh Vaze College of Arts, Science and Commerce
Address: Mithagar Road, Mulund (east), Mumbai - 400081
Phone: 022 -21631421 & 21631423
Bhausaheb Kelkar was an industrialist who manufactured fragrances and for a long time had been promoting educational activities through donations to institutions or grants to students from economically weaker sections of society. He set up the Kelkar Education Trust in Mulund in 1979 to start a college.
The college faced a lot of opposition from the saltpan labourers who were against its construction. Nevertheless, the college won the Best College Award within six years since it started. The University Grants Commission has rated it as a "college with potential for excellence".
The second wing of the college was built in 2001 and the cosmetology and perfumery unit was inaugurated two years ago.
Best known for:
Vaze College is best known for its strong base in science, in both faculty and students. There is always a merit holder from science every year and only the highest-ranking students gain entry into the science stream.
Model Yukta Mookhey, sailing award winner Vincent Peter, athletes Shreya Vidwans and Shraddha Ghule, and gymnast Asmita Chikle.
"The college is the best institution in terms of academic seriousness. The kind of importance it gives to extra-curricular activities, the student-friendly professors and the importance given to all-round development of a student's personality plays a major role in shaping the career of an individual."
- Mohan Gopinath, vice president, marketing, Zee Network
"This college is the pioneer of biotechnology in Mumbai. They are the first educational trust to go about with a successful plant cloning. They are also among the few colleges with a good NAAC grading. They produce eligible candidates for their own research laboratories."
- Rupa Shah, educationist
Previous year's cut-offs:
Arts - 65 per cent
Science - 93 per cent
Commerce - 84 per cent