LEARNING TO LIVE.
College management is very helpful and provides ample assistance in case of any difficulty. The management is quite informative regarding notifications for extra classes, class cancellations or applications for scholarships. There is a very active collaborative program and students get sent out to various national and international centers for exposure. The management also handles any complaints and students grievances. There is an active students council which is forum for this purpose. The management also coordinates several events such as annual tests as well as alumni meets.
We had to apply to St.Xavier's College through it's own application system which takes into account one's higher secondary performance. Thus, we had to score above a certain cutoff to stand a chance for selection into this college. I had the following subject combination for my higher secondary education-Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics and Biology. In the Indian School Certificate examinations I had scored an aggregate percentage of 94%. For admissions to my graduate course in Biotechnology, this score was sufficient to gain admission. I had chosen St.Xavier's College, Kolkata as it was a renowned college which has a huge tradition of producing excellent professionals. Among the illustrious ex students, my idols range from Sourav Ganguly as well as Rabindranath Tagore. I wished to follow in their footsteps.
FEE STRUCTURE AND FACILITIES
The fee structure is reasonable. The fees are to be paid on a quarterly basis. For the biotechnology course the fees amounted to 4000 rupees per month. There was an annual fee of 5000 rupees. In addition we had to pay 200 rupees before every examinations as exam fees. There was an initial safety deposit of 10000 which was refundable. The fees were increased slightly every 5 years.
The college offers excellent placements for all the courses it offers. My course however encourages students ti pursue PhD in Life Sciences. Our batch of 33, out of which 16 people are doing their PhD's in reputed institutes mentioned above and certain foreign universities such as Michigan, Seattle University and UT Southwestern.
I had to apply to the relevant department through the online admissions process. Soon after the publication of higher secondary results, the admissions link gets activated. The whole process is internet based, which is a major advantage. The admissions process involved putting in relevant details like scores in major subjects as well as secondary class 10 exam scores. The notification for admissions process begins in the first week of of June every year. The processing of the form must be done online by the deadline which is the 3rd week of June. Admissions forms must be filled and a token amount of money must be paid via online transfer. After this process, if you get selected you will be called for interview in the last week of June. Interview process is very straightforward and simple, You have a short meet with the head of the Department and the Vice Principal of the college. After that you meet with the administrations office and submit relevant documents like mark sheets and proof of residence. After that you have to go to the accounts office and pay the fees for the first quarter and that concludes the whole process. You will finally get an identity card and you are all set to begin college.
Hostel facilities are provided to both boys and girls. The Hostel facilities are however restricted to outstation students. The hostel rooms are clean and hygienic, The prices are also quite low and affordable. The canteen facilities provided are also quite safe and nutritious. The canteen provides breakfast, lunch and evening snacks to all students at a subsidized price. The food is tasty and quite addictive.
Senior students provided a huge helping hand for me. From helping out with understanding concepts as well as providing last years' question papers, all seniors were very forthcoming and did not hesitate from making us feel very welcome. All college events as well as departmental events were held where seniors showed us the way. Many clubs in college that focus on specific hobbies or activities were established with a lot of senior participation and help. They helped us become who we are.
The faculty are very involved in their respective courses. They are extremely dedicated to their coursework. The courses were designed very scientifically to include every aspect of our professional careers. The syllabi are designed to enable most students to compete in national level exams such as the National Eligibility Test (NET), GATE, DBT-NET, ICMR etc.
Campus life is very diverse and open minded. We had students from various ethnic backgrounds and a near equal sex ratio among both teachers as wells students. College activities involved all the different background people. Student parties were forums were there was widespread participation irrespective of background. The college helped students from different economic backgrounds by providing financial help. There is also a lot of awareness regarding sexual orientations. For instance there was an LGBT conference which encouraged awareness regarding gender roles and tolerance towards all people. The best aspect I feel about the college is that there is no bad influence of any politics. The whole campus is a politics free environment. No political parties are allowed to enter and canvas in any way. This ensures a pure and disciplined environment in college.
Our course was very demanding and it usually left us with a hectic day however we had intermittent excursions and other such educational activities which helped us relieve the stress the exam structure was based into semester exams and mid-semester exams with periodic internal evaluation and external committee evaluation for certain parts pf the course.
COURSE CURRICULUM OVERVIEW
The course structure is very well established. There is a major focus towards research with several lab based activities and educational tours organised quite frequently. There are field excursions organised every year which prove to be extremely enjoyable. There are routine offers for internships and summer fellowship programs. Some of the professors take in apprentices to help with research work. It is a fascinating environment to learn about research works. Many students gain insights into research methodology and a few even publish papers in the college research journal.
College per say does not provide internships officially, however, the professors do give us the required recommendations needed for applying to various research institutes for internships like Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER) Pune,Kolkata,Mohali, Indian Institute of Sciences (IISc) Bangalore, National Centre for Biological Sciences (NCBS) Bangalore, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) Mumbai, National Brain Research Institute (NBRC) Delhi, National Institute of Immunology (NII) Delhi, Bose Institute Kolkata, Ballygunj science college Kolkata, Indian Institute of Chemical Biology (IICB) Kolkata, Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics (SINP) Kolkata etc. The stipend varies from 5k to 10k depending on the fellowship obtained by particular student.
St. Xavier's College celebrates several events such as Christmas, Easter, Saraswati Puja, Republic Day, Independence Day. Other than this there are many year round events that includes the annual fest called Xavotsav. It is a really well appreciated event which involves dance, drama, song and various sports activities. The whole fest is organised completely by students and every year famous musicians and music bands come to participate in it. The than this, there are academic seminars, debate and quiz competitions, inter college sports tournaments organised throughout the year. There is a major focus on cultural activities.
LOAN/ SCHOLARSHIP PROVISIONS
The college supplies a scholarship to the students coming room under privileged background the scholarship consists of financial aid to all students who can show that they belong to families that have a low annual income.