New Alipore College sets benchmark for quality education in Bengal

The co educational college is being run in three shifts and has more than 3,000 students.

New Alipore College sets benchmark for quality education in Bengal


Those who say on different television channels or social media that the standard of education has gone down in Bengal should visit New Alipore College in south Kolkata once to understand how the best education could be imparted to students if the teachers and non-teaching staff are genuine and if there is perfect cooperation between the ‘Acharyas’ and the taught.

The college, which was set up in 1963 during the birth centenary of Swami Vivekananda, one of the finest educationists in India, is pursuing its vision, namely, to include, ignite and innovate over the past six decades. This has been possible due to the relentless work of professor Jayadeep Sarangi, principal of the college, and his band of teachers, who are more inclined to say yes when it comes to the development of the students.

The co educational college is being run in three shifts and has more than 3,000 students. The morning shift, which starts at 7.30 a.m and continues until 12.30 p.m., offers bioscience, which includes botany, zoology and anthropology.


The day shift, which offers arts and physical science, starts at 10.30 a.m. and continues until 4.30 p.m., while the classes for the commerce stream commence at 3.30 p.m. and go until 7.30 p.m. Because of three shifts, there is maximum utilisation of time.

It is obvious that a college that imparts knowledge to its students following the state-of-the-art method is bound to get good results, and many students from the institution are pursuing higher education at many foreign universities.

There are 26 courses offered to the students as add-on courses, which are conducted both online and offline. Some of the key courses are functional English, value education, entrepreneurship development, and human rights. Professor Dhrubajyoti Banerjee, coordinator of IQAC, said many of the added courses had started way back in 2018, much before the National Education Policy was introduced. “The courses are offered both online and offline, depending on the convenience of the students. Our main purpose is to give the best education to the students, so we will have to be flexible.”

A unique feature of the college is the sharing of resources with other educational institutions. The students from other colleges come to take assistance from the college, while the students of the college go to other colleges and use the science laboratory. This process is called hand holding with other colleges and institutions. Resources of the college are shared with colleges situated in north Bengal. The students from the far-off colleges come here, and the teachers, during their visit to north Bengal, take classes in those colleges.

The college constantly inspires the students to become financially self-reliant. Workshops are held regularly, along with job fairs. The college has a collection of 45 varieties of medicinal plants, and the students who come from economically challenged backgrounds are encouraged to do mushroom cultivation.

The college funds projects that are taken up by the teachers and students, and the researchers can even go abroad to do research.

The college authorities take special measures to get the students acquainted with the cultural diversity of India. Professor Somdatta Banerjee, who looks after the cultural cell, said, “Various functions like Vasanta Utsab or Rakhi Bandhaan are observed, keeping in mind the pan-India perspective. We had organised a Kolkata street food festival where the students cooked some of the street food and sold it. It was an interesting event.” The Kolkata Heritage Cell of the college has inked a MoU with Sabarna Sangrahasala. Professors Aniruddha Kar of the Sanskrit department and Amartya Saha of the Journalism department are the key figures behind the poster exhibition held by the college.

It is the only college in Kolkata, if not the entire state, where there is a translation cell. Books are translated, and the college authorities take on the responsibility of publishing them. Bhasa Sangam is a multilingual magazine published by the college. Professor Pooja Rai is the convenor of the cell. “We celebrate Bhanu Bhakta Jayanti on 13 July when we propose to publish the magazine in 16+ languages,” she said.

The development of students cannot be possible unless they understand the culture and traditions of their friends coming from other states. Know Thy Neighbour is a unique scheme where the students get a chance to understand their friends in the north-east.

The rich library, with nearly 30,000 books, allows students from other institutions to use it on Saturdays. There are books on Kolkata and Tagore beside the books on different subjects.

The college has done well in sports. It has a football coach, and another is going to be appointed soon on Kho Kho. There are indoor game facilities like table tennis, badminton, and chess, as well as outdoor games like football and cricket.

Captain Gobindalal Mandal, who looks after the NCC, said so far more than five NCC cadets have jobs in city police. “The students take NCC quite seriously, and this helps them to build discipline,” he maintained.

Professor Sarangi said the college is a green campus with a 60 KV solar plant, and the entire college is under CCTV surveillance. The journalism department has recently started teaching in AI mode, and there are 19 ICD-enabled classrooms.

The alumni of the college have given books to students interested in pursuing competitive examinations.

It is the only educational institution where the hobbies of the teachers are respected. Ryan Rashid, a semester IV student in the English department, feels proud to be a student at this college. “The mentoring in the college is done very well, along with the close contact between the teachers and the students, which helps us move forward with our studies. There are open-hearted discussions with the teachers, and the teachers always encourage us to pursue our goals,” he commented.