Indian student’s IIT dreams can turn sour. Know why

Indian student’s IIT dreams can turn sour. Know why The top-notch educational institute, IIT, which is all set to begin its 2019 batch in a month’s time is facing faculty crunch. Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) are facing a faculty shortage of 30-40%, says an Economic Times report.

But why India’s premium engineering college is facing acute shortage of faculty? Vineet Nayar, former CEO at HCL Technologies, says inadequate research opportunities are keeping many competent people away from joining IITs as faculty members. "Unfortunately as a nation we have lost our charm for teaching as a profession. Research is great but only in patches at the IITs in India. Corporate interest and funding both are low in research. Demand for these researchers in the corporate world is low and thus for a high potential faculty, it is unattractive to work in such an environment," Nayar told ET.

This report has shocked IIT Kharagpur prospects the most, where the shortage based on the ideal ratio of one faculty member for every 10 students is more than 40%. It needs 435 more faculty members for the existing student base of over 10,000. The situation of IIT-Bombay, which currently has 687 faculty members including part-timers, is no different. It is short of 213 faculty members.

IIT Delhi hires around 30 faculty members every year. It tries to attract talent by doling out research grants of Rs 1 lakh for peripheral and Rs 10 lakh for equipment. It currently has 523 faculty members for 7,800 students.

Kushal Sen, Dean IIT Delhi says they are not receiving qualified applications for the vacant posts. He says, "Only three to five of the hundreds of applications that we receive are worth selecting."
Fearing it will lose competent faculty to competition, IIT Kanpur recently closed hiring in less than two weeks compared with the usual three to six weeks. "It was a question of losing out this professor to competition had we prolonged, hence we had to quickly close this with an offer letter," explained Manindra Agarwal, IIT-Kanpur's dean for faculty affairs.

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