The institute is establishing four endowed chairs in Sanskrit, Urdu, Classical Indian Music and Indian Performing Arts to promote Indian cultural traditions in its curriculum.
IITGN will engage full-time and part-time instructors and bring eminent scholars and performers for varying duration in each of the four areas to enrich the academic and cultural life on campus and expand the imagination and intellectual horizons of its students. IITGN Director Prof Sudhir Jain said, “Exposing students to the diverse forms of India’s cultural expressions is one of the distinctive features of IITGN’s education. The Chairs in Cultural Expressions underscore IITGN’s commitment to critical thinking, creativity and appreciation of India’s cultural heritage in its educational programmes.”
In addition to offering courses in Sanskrit, Urdu, Classical Indian Music and Indian Performing Arts, the Chairs will enable the institute to bring eminent scholars as visiting professors or scholars-in-residence for lectures, seminars and co-curricular programmes in each of the four areas. The institute is currently raising endowments to support each of the four chairs.
Srinivas Reddy, a faculty member at Brown University who served as assistant professor of South Asian Studies at IITGN from 2012-2017, is teaching courses on classical Indian literature, music traditions of India and South Asian society and culture. He said, “The Chairs in Cultural Expressions offer a unique model for promoting the cultural heritage of India within an academic setting. The Chairs will establish a continuity of teaching and research in these fields while remaining flexible enough to attract the finest scholars and practitioners from around the world.”
IITGN promotes holistic development in its educational programmes. It emphasises creativity, interdisciplinarity, the liberal arts, project-oriented learning, diversity and globalisation in its academic programme. Its five-week immersive Foundation Programme for first-year BTech students focuses on creativity, communication, leadership, ethics, social engagement and physical activity. It also offers a six-week Summer Explorer Fellowship under which students travel the length and breadth of India on just ₹900 a day to cover travel, accommodation and living expenses, to experience its rich diversity.