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Rediff.com  » Business » Indian B-schools get a facelift

Indian B-schools get a facelift

September 09, 2006 15:00 IST

Abhishek Saha, a student of Indian Institute of Management Calcutta, doesn't enjoy distractions, especially as he's invariably saddled with projects, assignments and a gruelling schedule.

So when he wants to withdraw money, he doesn't need to step outside the campus. Instead, he simply steps out of his room to the ICICI ATM machine that has been installed just outside his hostel.

Every second is precious for Saha and the authorities at IIM Calcutta know this only too well. That's why the entire campus boasts of 8Mbps Internet connectivity helping Saha to connect to his laptop easily.

For his notes, Saha steps into the special computer room equipped with a laser printer. Break time for him and his friends includes a trip to the gym with its state-of-the-art equipment and a sports room which boasts of a snooker table, besides other regular indoor games.

And yes, after all the sweat and toil, the dirty clothes don't have to be handwashed. They are simply dumped into the washing machines that have been installed in the campus.

And you thought life in a hostel was difficult?

At IIM Calcutta, authorities are working overtime to ensure that the students don't have to settle for anything mediocre. Ambuj Mohanti, dean, planning and administration, IIM Calcutta informs that a sizeable part of the Rs 90 crore (Rs 900 million) campus development funds will be used to upgrade the existing hostels.

The funds will also be used to build a new hostel, now that admissions to the management school are set to go up by around 54 per cent - from 650 to around 900. A special hostel for executive PGP students is also on the cards.

Also on the charts is a cafeteria with coffee-vending machines, a covered parking plaza, a shopping centre, a medical centre and a multiplex for various kinds of events.

At IIM Bangalore, a joggers' park has been created for students while at IIM Lucknow, an entire departmental store has been constructed for the benefit of the students.

Clearly, the face of Indian B-school hostels is undergoing a drastic change. For those of us who've lived in hostels, it was a place where luxury was a strict no-no.

Now, hostels in some of the finest B-schools look fetching what with every institution vying to offer the best to students.

B S Sahay, dean, Institute of Management Technology, Ghaziabad says, "Every year we have different plans to upgrade the facilities in our hostels." IMT, Ghaziabad has added a host of facilities for its students. More hostel blocks have been added and the red brick building even offers both single and double occupancy.

At MDI, the executive programme attracts students in their 30s, some of whom are even married. Keeping this in mind, Management Development Institute hostels are quite luxurious and comfortable in their own way. The hostel has bigger, more spacious rooms boasting of separate dining spaces.

Besides this wing, MDI Gurgaon has three types of hostels, including one for the regular MBA course, for research scholars and for the executive management programme's students.

In a bid to provide comfort to students like Saha, the overall appearance of B-schools is changing. The old layers of paint are peeling off and a new coat of colour is being added. And this, promise most B-schools, is just the beginning.

Gargi Gupta & Aabhas Sharma
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