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Student wellness programmes in IITs now
HRK News Bureau | Kolkata | Friday, 07 July 2017

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The programmes aim to relieve unnecessary and imaginary stress elements.

Ministry of Human Resources Development has recommended development of a wellness programme for students of IITs.

Following the recommendation, several IITs have come together to design innovative and unique programmes for human excellence. The idea is to promote wellness among students, so that they become emotionally strong, besides being successful engineers.

Initiating the drive, IIT Kharagpur organised a workshop on July 5 to promote wellness in IIT campuses. The workshop saw participation of IIT Kharagpur, IIT Bombay, IIT Madras and IIT Gandhinagar. Each IIT presented its own perspective in the workshop.

There was also participation of several experts from NIMHANS, TISS and other industry experts. They talked about campus life at IITs and dived deep to unearth solutions to problems.

MHRD will be given the outcome and recommendations from the workshop, which can later be replicated in other institutions.

Talking about this programme, Partha Pratim Chakrabarati, director, IIT Kharagpur, said, "Our aim is not to pick their weaknesses but to encourage their innate strengths and then sharpen them further. We should understand that most of the brilliant students in the country get admitted into the IIT system and their problems are unique."

He adds, "We need to relieve them from unnecessary and imaginary stress elements that they suffer from. And that is the reason why we are trying to get a unique solution."

Working towards this programme, IITs will now have students’ helpline, induction programme and academic curricula update. Also, each IIT is developing its own unique way to deal with the issue.

IIT Kharagpur will have four programmes for its UG students. The first year students will go through an induction programme to help them settle in campus life. Second year students will go through assimilation sessions, so as to understand the IIT system better. Third year students will go through reorientation sessions in the beginning and de-induction programmes to help them prepare better to deal with life outside campus.  

Further, there will be modification in the functioning of the students’ council in IIT Kharagpur. It will now have representation of four categories of students in the council, namely – women, PhD, postgraduate and undergraduate from all departments. Each category will also have a council member.  

In student counselling, career development advice will also be provided. Generally, there is stigma around counselling among students. To make it stigma free, students’ activities will be conducted so that students come for assistance for conscious health and wellness.  

Acting towards this initiative, IIT BHU has introduced an induction programme.

IIT Bombay has introduced a counselling helpline in collaboration with TISS. Also, it has created a questionnaire in detail for analysing the mental health of students.

IIT Madras has come up with a reactive and proactive programme called Mitra and Saathi.

© 2016 HR Katha

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