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Thursday, Jun 05, 2003

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BITS, Pilani opens campus in Dubai

Vimala Vasan


ONE of India's premier engineering institutions, the Birla Institute of Technology & Science (BITS), Pilani, has opened a branch campus at Knowledge Village in Dubai.

Dr S. Venkateswaran, Director, BITS, and Dean of the college, Dr M. Ramachandran, visited Knowledge Village on May 27 to sign the agreements, establishing BITS' first campus outside India. The university will initially offer undergraduate programmes in computer science, electrical and electronics engineering, and electronics and instrumentation engineering, according to a press release made available to Business Line.

Dr S. Venkateswaran said: "The facilities at Knowledge Village create attractive conditions for BITS and present an exciting opportunity for our first campus outside India. We hope to attract around 400 students to the Dubai campus initially, but longer term we aim to create a larger regional education entity, complementing and supporting the development of Knowledge Village into a regional centre of excellence in learning.

"BITS' Dubai branch campus will focus on engineering degree programmes initially but we aim to introduce additional higher degree and doctoral programmes in science and technology subjects, in future. Knowledge Village is the perfect environment in which to create this new branch campus, and the links being forged through Knowledge Village between academia and industry in the region closely reflect the relationships that BITS has worked to create, since its foundation.

We believe we will be able attract students, expatriate Indians and others, from all over the region. However, quality is paramount and we will be applying the same high academic standards in Dubai as in Pilani and our other campuses in India.

Dr S. Venkateswaran emphasised the university's focus on three main fields, which are relatively new to the region, postgraduate studies, research and development-based studies, the creation of links with the industry through students' specialised training.

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