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Sunday, May 28, 2017

IIT counselling model may help IISER deal with students' stress - TNN

IIT counselling model may help IISER deal with students' stress

Ashis Poddar | TNN | May 27, 2017, 06.37 AM IST

KALYANI: IISER Kolkata is likely to follow the IITs student-counselling model to acclimatize students on their Mohanpur campus. IISER director R N Mukherjee indicated this at the institute's fifth convocation in Mohanpur on Friday . The idea came after student Sagar Mandal was found hanging in his hostal room on May 1.

Mukherjee said, "I spent many years as a faculty member of IIT Kanpur. I tried to put in place the same system of keeping close contact with students as is done in other IITs. Each student has his or her own capacity to withstand pressure and this differs with each individual. Almost everybody suffers from tension but not everyone goes to the extent of committing suicide."

"English appeared to be a problem for a student in Kanpur. When the lessons were explained to him in Hindi, he scored 80%. There are similar instances here in IISER too." 

After Mandal's suicide, IISER authorities have strengthened the system of regular multi-level contacts with residential students with a view to detect stress, frustration or tension among them.

Dean of students' affairs Arindam Kundagrami said, "We have strengthened the system where a senior student looks after a group of juniors and maintains liaison with the faculty . The faculty will inform deans of problems and these will be conveyed to higher authorities. So far, there was a lacuna in this mentorship programme."

Mukherjee added: "We will help Mandal's family since they are very poor."