IIT Prof Prakash Gopalan joins as Thapar University Director

Prof Gopalan was associated with IIT Bombay as a professor in the Department of Metallurgical Engineering and Material Science for over two decades

January 21, 2014 2:52 IST | India Infoline News Service
Thapar University, one of India’s leading engineering institutions, has appointed Prof Prakash Gopalan, former Dean of Student Affairs at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay, as its new Director. Vastly experienced, Prof Gopalan was associated with IIT Bombay as a professor in the Department of Metallurgical Engineering and Material Science for over two decades.
The appointment of Prof Gopalan, who has the distinction of serving as the Dean of Student Affairs at IIT Bombay from 2005 to 2011, comes amid high expectations that he will utilize his vast academic and administrative experience to take Thapar University, already a well established name in the field of engineering and technical education, to even greater heights.
Clearly a man on a mission, Prof Gopalan has it all planned out. At a time when Thapar University wants to reach out to more and more students beyond the North, the new Director wants to leverage the high research potential of the university to gain greater traction. Articulating his vision for Thapar University, Prof Gopalan said, “I have my task cut out. One of the great strengths of Thapar University is research, and we will further leverage it to develop our scientific and R&D capabilities and take this institution to the next level.”
A firm believer in industry-academia linkages, the new Director wants Thapar University students to gain more corporate exposure. “This will not only enhance their employability and ensure better placements, but will also help in forging stronger bonds with Indian and global corporates,” he said.
Prof Gopalan, who is a respected name even in American academic circles, is out to make the most of the quality of faculty and students to make Thapar University a world-class university and a global name to reckon with. “I believe India is a hub of technical manpower and Thapar University can majorly contribute towards it. That’s the reason why world-class education will be one of my focus areas. I want to bring Thapar University on a par with the best technical institutions across the globe,” he said.
An M. Tech from IIT Kanpur and a doctorate from the US-based Purdue University, Prof Gopalan has also done an Executive Development Programme from Kellogg School of Management, USA.
Well entrenched in the US education structure, Prof Gopalan visits the US every year as part of his educational engagements and is held in high esteem by the academic community there. He also holds the position of Adjunct Professor in the Department of Chemistry at Purdue University, US.

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