Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee (commonly known as IIT Roorkee or IITR), formerly the University of Roorkee (1948–2001) and the Thomason College of Civil Engineering (1853–1948), is a public university located in Roorkee, Uttarakhand, India. Established in 1847 in British India by the then lieutenant governor, Sir James Thomason, it was given university status in 1949 and was converted into an Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) in 2001, thus becoming the seventh IIT to be declared.
The institution has its origins in a class started in 1845 to train local youth in engineering to assist in public works then beginning. In 1847 it was officially established. It was renamed as the Thomason College of Civil Engineering in 1854 in honour of its founder, Sir James Thomason, lieutenant governor 1843–53. The first Indian to graduate from the Roorkee college was Rai Bahadur Kanhaiya Lal in 1852.
Initially, the college had engineers' class only for Europeans, upper subordinate class for Europeans and Indians and lower subordinate class for Indians only. Such was the reputation of the college, that the recruitment of the Engineering students was directly controlled by the Public Works Departments (PWD). Every student was guaranteed a post in the PWD/irrigation departments. Alumni of University of Roorkee played important roles in all the areas of engineering primarily civil, including maintenance of the Ganges canal, construction of dam and irrigation projects like Bhakra Nangal, the Rajasthan canal, the Aswan dam on the Nile in Egypt, and construction of Chandigarh.
Between 1934 to 1943, officers of the Indian Army Corps of Engineers received training at the Thomason College of Engineering and, even after the establishment of the School of Military Engineering (SME) at Roorkee in 1943, they continued to receive technical training at Thomason. In 1948 when SME was moved to Dapodi, Pune. It was given the status of University by Act No. IX of 1948 of the United Provinces (Uttar Pradesh) and was titled University of Roorkee. Jawahar Lal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of India, presented the Charter in November 1949, elevating the erstwhile college to the first engineering university of independent India. Soil scientist Jagdish Narain was the first student to be admitted into the university under this act.
University of Roorkee (IITR) along with Bengal Engineering College, Shibpur (IIEST) had contributed significantly for the development of IIT system in the country.
On 21 September 2001, an ordinance issued by the Government of India declared it as the nation's seventh Indian Institute of Technology, renaming it to the current name, Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee. The ordinance was converted into an act by the Parliament to make IIT Roorkee an "Institution of National Importance".
The Department of Civil Engineering was established in 1847 and is the oldest engineering department in India. The Electrical Engineering department of the Thomson College was established in the year 1897, and was one of the earliest such specializations in the world. The Architecture department is first in India in instituting a master's degree course in Architecture (M. Arch.) in the year 1969–70.
In 1978 Institute of Paper Technology, Saharanpur was merged with the then University of Roorkee. The Institute of Paper Technology was established as School of Paper Technology by the Government of India in 1964, with an aid from the Royal Swedish Government. The school was renamed as the Institute of Paper Technology in July 1968 and subsequently Department of Paper Technology in July 1992.
All IITs follow the same organization structure which has President of India as Visitor at the top of hierarchy. Directly under the President is the IIT Council. Under the IIT Council is the Board of Governors of each IIT. Under the Board of Governors is the Director, who is the chief academic and executive officer of the IIT. Under the Director, in the organisational structure, comes the Deputy Director. Under the Director and the Deputy Director, come the Deans, Heads of Departments, Registrar.
IIT Roorkee offers academic programmes in Engineering, Architecture, Technology, Applied Sciences, and Management. It runs eleven undergraduate (UG), five integrated dual degree, three integrated M.Tech., three integrated M.Sc., sixty one postgraduate (PG) and several doctoral programmes.
The institute admits students to B.Tech., B.Arch. and integrated M.Tech./M.Sc. courses through the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) conducted at centers all over India. Before being converted into an IIT, the university selected students through the Roorkee Entrance Exam (REE) conducted on an All-India level. The selectivity of REE was close to 2%. After IIT-JEE, it was considered to be the second toughest engineering entrance examination in India. Admission to PG programmes in engineering and architecture is on the basis of GATE score and/or a written test and interview. For PG programmes in fundamental sciences admission is based on the Joint Admission Test (JAM).
Along with the engineering courses, the institute offers a two-year residential MBA program for which the admissions, starting from 2011, will be done on the basis of Common Admission Test, thus replacing Joint Management Entrance Test (JMET) previously conducted by IITs. The institute also offers an interdisciplinary program in computer applications leading to a degree in Master of computer applications (MCA). The MCA program is a three-year course and admission for the course is through JAM.
According to statistics published by institute in 2007–08 4137 students were enrolled in the institute across all programs. The student-to-academic-staff ratio was 2.6:1 and that of UG/PG students was 1.4:1.
As in other IITs, the institute follows a credit system for evaluating academic performance. The grade point average (GPA) is on a scale of 0 to 10. Courses are allotted number of credits according to their importance. Each academic year is divided into two semesters and teaching programmes are organized around the credit system. Teaching includes lectures, tutorials, practicals, projects, seminars, dissertations, and field and industrial training.
IIT Roorkee is one of the biggest technical institutions in the country having the largest number of academic units. It has 21 academic departments covering engineering, applied sciences, humanities & social sciences, and management programmes, 1 academic centre, 3 centres of excellence, 5 academic service centres and 3 supporting units.
Department of Architecture & Planning
Inner courtyard of Department of Architecture & Planning
An ISO 9001:2008 certified academic service centre in 2015, The Mahatma Gandhi Central Library finds a unique place in the academic spectrum of the Institute. Started in 1848 with a few hundred donated books, its collection has grown to more than 3,50,000 documents in all media. Providing information through e-resources is the main focus of the Library. It has around 90,000 sq ft of fully airconditioned space. It can accommodate more than 500 readers at any point of time. The library building is WiFi enabled and contains a total 75 user terminals for dedicated readers. It also contains an 80-seater open reading room.
IIT Roorkee has academic collaboration with the many universities in India and abroad. The collaborative programmes include student and faculty exchange, internship for students and joint research activities among others.
IIT Roorkee's contribution towards the international community in science and technology include the courses and training programs run for developing countries. Every year students from more than 50 countries join IIT Roorkee for full-time or short-term training courses. In 1955 the department of Water Resources Development and Management (WRDM) was established as an Asian African Centre to honour India's commitment at the Asian African Conference held in Bandung. WRDM and the Department of Hydrology run special postgraduate programmes for students of the Afro Asian region. The department has so far trained over 2469 in service engineers and agricultural scientists from 48 countries including India. The courses offered by the Department of Hydrology are presently sponsored by the Government of India and the UNESCO.
The main campus in Roorkee has an area of 365 acres (1,480,000 m2).
IIT Roorkee has a campus of 25 acres (100,000 m2) in Saharanpur which offers courses in Polymer Science, Process Engineering and Paper Technology. In addition to this, a new ten-acre campus has been established in Greater Noida, Knowledge Park II, which was inaugurated on April 4, 2011. The Noida extension centre has 16 lecture rooms, software laboratories, faculty offices, a library and a computer centre.
Jawahar Bhawan, a boys-only hostel for graduate students
Most students live in the hostels, where extracurricular activities complement the academic routine. The campus has 16 hostels, of which two (Sarojini, Kasturba ) are occupied by girls. Hostels may accommodate undergraduate and graduate students along with doctoral students. Students are assigned to hostels by the school administration after their freshmen year. There are nine hostels for married students, doctoral students and foreign students. Each bhawan has a mess. Mess administration consists of a staff advisor, a chief advisor, and a student mess secretary.
Students conduct two fests every year, Cognizance (Technical festival) and Thomso (Cultural festival).
Student groups on the campus include STIFKI (Student Teacher Interaction Forum for Knowledge and Innovation), IMG (Information Management Group), SDSLabs (Software Development Section Labs), GIL (Group for Interactive Learning), EDC (Entrepreneurship Development Cell), HEC (Himalayan Explorers' Club), Literary Society (Active involvement in debating and quizzing),a local chapter of ShARE, Spic Macay in addition to student chapters of technical societies such as ASME (American Society of Mechanical Engineers, IIT Roorkee Student Section), SAE, IEEE, IIChE (Indian Institute of Chemical Engineers), etc. The Cultural Society (dramatics, music, choreography, cinematic, literary, IIT Heartbeat(Official inter-IIT magazine)), audio, lights, Programme management, Kshitij, Watch Out (the Official News Magazine of IIT Roorkee) takes all initiative related to cultural activities in the institute. It organizes music concerts, dance shows, dramas and quiz competitions. National Service Scheme at IIT Roorkee is headed by Dean of Students Welfare, IIT Roorkee. As of 2014, NSS, IIT Roorkee has over 700 active members from different disciplines, participating and organizing various community and social service activities.
IIT Roorkee has a hobbies club, one of its kind among IITs. It aims at facilitating activities like photography, philately, astronomy, fine arts, gardening, web design, etc. It is headed by a chief advisor, who is supported by two deputy chief advisors and a council secretary. It hosts SRISHTI, an annual techno-hobby exhibition.
IIT Roorkee Motorsports is the official Formula Student team of IIT Roorkee. It was founded in August 2010. The team designed and developed a formula style race car and represented India in the international competition Formula SAE Australasia in December 2011, held in Melbourne, Australia. This was the first Indian team to finish the endurance event of the competition and also finished first in fuel efficiency. The team also enjoys the rare feat of displaying their student-made race car at Auto Expo 2012. After a successful international debut, the team has plans to develop a series hybrid vehicle and participate in the Formula Student UK 2013.
Student's Initiative for Integrated Rural Development (SIIRD) is an attempt to develop a “Sustainable Development Model” in a village named CHHARBA. This model of rural development is one of its kind. Its uniqueness lies in the voluntary use of student force for larger good of the society by integrating the efforts of industry-academia-government-society. Started in 2006, the initiatives of SIIRD has received support and appreciation from Government, Industry and Academia. The results are evident from the fact that under the Rashtriya Gaurav Puraskar scheme run by the Central Government, Chharba has been awarded best Gram Sabha of Dehradun district out of 403 Gram Sabhas. It is noteworthy that in the evaluation, only Chharba got marks under health column due to the health camps organized by SIIRD, IIT Roorkee. On the occasion of Panchayati Raj Day, Chharba was felicitated with Panchayat Sashaktikaran Puraskar for their exemplary work under the Panchayat Empowerment Accountability Incentive Scheme (PEAIS). The award was provided on 24 April 2012 by Ministry of Panchayati Raj. The approach and work of SIIRD has been appreciated at international level as evidenced by its winning the fourth spot worldwide in HCT-Wharton Tournament in Abu Dhabi. The students have presented the concept of SIIRD in conferences organized by University of Cambridge, University of British Columbia, Essex Business School, and Humboldt-University of Berlin. The concept has been published in: The International Journal of Social Sustainability in Economic, Social and Cultural Context, World Academy of Science, Engineering and Technology Journal and Global Science and Technology Forum: Annual International Conference on Innovation and Entrepreneurship (IE) Singapore, 2011 Proceedings.
The Institute is also set to host the inception of SPIC MACAY Winter Convention.A cultural and classical program in which students from classes 9 and 10 from all over the country will collaborate which is to be held from 13 to 16 December 2015.
Lala Deen Dayal (1844–1905), photographer to the Viceroy of India and Nizam of Hyderabad, received the Royal Warrant from Queen Victoria in 1897
Charles Palmer (1847–1940), last surviving man to hold the Lucknow medal for his role in the defence of the Residency in Lucknow during the Indian Rebellion of 1857
Sir Ganga Ram (1851–1927), a leading philanthropist and agriculturist. A civil engineer by profession and a graduate of the 1873 batch, Sir Ganga Ram supervised the construction of several prominent structures in Punjab. Referred to as 'Father of modern Lahore'.
William Willcocks (1852–1932), British civil engineer who graduated from 1872 batch, remembered as a renowned irrigation engineer, having proposed the first Aswan Dam and undertaken major projects of irrigation in South Africa and Turkey
Ajudhiya Nath Khosla (1892–1984), eminent Indian engineer, educationist, visionary and recipient of second highest civilian honor of India — Padma Vibhushan, awarded in 1977, served as Member of the Planning Commission, Governor of Orissa, President of National Science Academy and Vice Chancellor of the University of Roorkee (now IIT Roorkee)
Peter de Noronha (1897–1970), businessman, philanthropist, knighted by Pope Paul VI in 1965 for his work for the Christian community in India
Kanwar Sen (1899–1979), Chief Engineer of Bikaner credited with the creation of the Indira Gandhi canal in Rajasthan and Punjab, awarded Padma Bhushan in 1956
Ghananand Pande (1902–1995), Chairman of Indian Railways in 1954 and Chairman of Hindustan Steels, awarded the Padma Vibhushan in 1969
Jai Krishna (1912–1999), eminent scholar on earthquake engineering, instrumental in setting up the first and the only earthquake engineering department in India, at IIT Roorkee, awarded Padma Bhushan in 1956, served as Vice Chancellor of the University of Roorkee in 1969
Jaiprakash Gaur (born c.1930), founder chairman of Jaiprakash Associates and Jaypee Group of companies, ranked by Forbes magazine as the 48th-richest person in India
A. S. Arya (born c.1931), National Seismic advisor and Padma Shri awardee
G. D. Agrawal (born 1932), eminent environmental engineer, Save Ganga activist and former Head of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at IIT Kanpur, notable for his successful fast in 2009 to stop the damming of the Bhagirathi River[better source needed]
Hitendra Chaturvedi (born 1969), MD, Greendust.com
Amit Agarwal (born 1977), prominent technology columnist at WSJ, India's first professional blogger, currently the highest paid Indian blogger in terms of Google Adsense revenue, founder of Digital Inspiration, founder of Labnol
The IIT Roorkee Alumni Association was established and registered in 1940 as a society under the Society Registration Act. The association has 31 local chapters in the country and three chapters abroad. The association encourages the alumni to take interest in the activities of the alma mater and promotes relations between alumni.
Every year the association hosts Diamond, Golden and Silver jubilee functions, where alumni graduating 60, 50 and 25 years earlier are invited. Since 2005 the association has also been awarding a Distinguished Alumni Award to alumni who have made immense contributions in the fields of Academic/Research, Social Sciences, Engineering & Public Administration, Corporate Development/Entrepreneurship and Service to the Society.
The Student Alumni Mentorship Programme has been initiated by the association to help young students in achieving their career aspirations. The alumni visit the institute to interact with the students and staff and share their suggestions.
It is a student body working under the Dean of Alumni Affairs and International Relations — IIT Roorkee for strengthening of the alumni — institute relationship. The team assists the Office of Alumni Affairs in its day-to-day activities and ensures that every initiative is properly implemented within the scheduled time-frame.
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