Inaugaration of our new campus at Palmyra for training in metalwork
The long-standing vision of our principal, Mr. Lavkamad Chandra, became finally a reality
A modern workshop, new classrooms, a dining hall, bathrooms, a water tank, watchman room, and a biological wastewater treatment plant – everything has been completed and is now up and running. What is left for us to do is some landscaping against flooding, and completing some pathes and access roads as this work was delayed due to the heavy monsoon last year.
Throughout the construction, we tried to involve our knowledgeable teachers, staff and students as much as possible. Shiva Kumar, an alumnus of AIAT and now a highly motivated and engaged teacher, was in charge for the whole electrification. He guided the students of the Home Appliance course to install the time recording system and surveillance cameras, tube lights, fans etc. and thus helped us to keep construction costs at a minimum. Similarly, the set up of the computers, the software and the networking,was done with students from our Computer Hardware trade together with their teachers Ravi and Suba.
Over the last year, we have not only focused on completing the construction but also on preparing our newly hired teachers. As such, in January and February of this year our teachers for this new branch received additional training from Mr. Schrodt and Mr. Rybarczyk from the Senior Expert Service (SES) in Germany. With his support, our teachers had an opportunity to greatly improve their teaching skills, thus adding another layer of quality to our training program.
We should also note that since August 2015, 28 students are already being trained as welder and fitter within the MES (Modular Employable Skills) scheme. This training lasts one year which means that these students will already complete their course this summer.
During their training, they also worked on various projects where they already produced simple products like steel frames for chairs, but also new tables for the welding section. or mobile hardware training kits using steel leftovers from the construction. Some of this work was done in collaboration with the Auroville Upcycling Studio led by Ok and Marc and enabled our students to explore their creativity and design skills while turning waste into valuable products.
We all felt very grateful, when finally on February 6th of this year - in the presence of the Consul General of Federal Republic of Germany, Mr. Achim Fabig - the official inaugaration took place.
The Thasildar of Vanur Taluk Mr. Kama Singh, the former Auroville Secretary IAS Mr. Bala Baskar, Mr. Ashoke Chatterjee from Sri Aurobindo International Institute of Educational Research (SAIIER) had joined us for this special occasion as well and we were happy to personally extend our sincere gratitude to all those who have so generously contributed to this project.
Our special thanks went to Dipl.-Ing. Helmut Ernst from VFAVR Germany without whose driving force and commitment we would not have been able to complete this work. We like to mention and thank Mr. Georg Stollenwerk who was not able to join us on this day for his continuous and valuable assistance and advice.
We were also glad to express our special thanks to the architect Poonam, the constructor Segar and his workers, who all have done a wonderful job to make this long held dream a reality.
During the inauguration, Mr. Sentil Kumar the Regional (Director of Employment) highlighted “The importance of skill training today“ while Dr. Mohan Rao, principal of Dr. Pauls Engeneering College, complimented Auroville for this outstanding vocational training center in South India.
Mr. Senthil Kumar from GT-Electronic and Mr. Veeramani (Managing Employment Director) particularly addressed our students in the audience, emphasizing the extraordinary opportuniy they have with this institute and the education it provides.
Overall, around 200 visitors (students and teachers from surrounding High Schools and members of AV working groups as well as other guests and well wishers) joined the inaugaration which was highlighted by Gordon Korstange's (AVI USA) wonderfull Raga flute recital, Hartmut van Lieres' piano recital as well as the music performance by Svaram (done with work tools) and last but not lease a wonderful dance routine by our students which very much expressed the joy we all felt on this day.