Nirjari Upadhyay, a third year graduate student from SID (School of Interior Designing) a part of CEPT (Centre for Environmental Planning and Technology) University. Well this post has to be from a designing college and that could be very well established from the beautiful pictures we have here.
“For the next five years, forget that you’ll get any sleep”
that was the first ever sentence I heard from SID’s former Dean Ms. Krishna Shastri. Confused, scared were the first reactions of all the 60 of us. Now I know why she said that and I think the famous phrase really makes sense in this case “Kuch paane ke liye kuch khona padta hai”.
Architecture was my first preference and although I couldn’t get into CEPT for architecture, I took up the Bachelors in Interior Design course. Honestly, that’s the best decision I’ve ever made.
CEPT is an entirely new world in its own. The university mainly focuses on architecture, construction, design and management related courses for both Undergraduate as well as Masters. There are basically 5 departments:
- Faculty of architecture
- Faculty of design
- Faculty of design
- Faculty of planning
- Faculty of management
For all of the above, undergraduate course is a 5-years course and masters is a 2-year course.
The teaching is mostly hands-on as the faculties believe that we would learn better and more if we have a practical experience. Spoon feeding is not at all encouraged. The faculties are the most cool people ever. 50% of them being alumni-turned faculties, they understand us and our capabilities and are available to help and guide us throughout. Some of them even come for design discussions at 10 in the night and go home at 4 in the morning.
On being asked about the “load factor” I would definitely laugh. If you really want to achieve great things, be ready to stay awake in the college all the time. The advantage that we have is that the campus is open 24×7. Mostly students stay in the college and work together till 6 in the morning, go home and are back to attend the lectures at 8 am. We have submissions almost every day for which intense thinking and energy levels are necessary. 85% attendance is mandatory and let me tell you, they are very strict about it.
Apart from that we have Summer-Winter School (SWS). These programs differ from the regular semesters in terms of structure, approach and content. The key-words that capture the spirit of SWS are experiment, variety and innovation. They explore emerging areas, provide space to test new ideas and methods, facilitate in-situ experience, help understand critical sites and situations, and create opportunities to learn by making. The courses in SWS are intense and are for short duration : between two to four weeks ranging from on-campus courses to national courses to international courses.
We have various facilities that help us do our work better. We have a high quality, well-equipped workshop for wood, metal, ceramics and textile. We also have Fab-lab where laser-cutting, CNC cutting, 3D modelling and various other things are done. There is also a well-equipped structure lab and an IT lab.
Talking about lecture halls and classes, there are well-equipped studios (some of which are air-conditioned) and almost all of them have projectors. There are two high capacity auditoriums. Apart from these the faculties mostly prefer to teach in the spill-out areas in the campus. Each department has its own favourite area for hanging out and informal discussions, the north lawns and the SID plaza are two examples.
CEPT library houses more than 46,000 resources which include books, bound volumes of journals, theses, students’ reports etc. It also has a unique collection of drawings, prepared by students during their academic programmes. More than 4500 drawings are available in the library. This collection attracts national and international visitors. Apart from this, the library has Audio Visual Resources on CDs, DVDs, Slides etc.
Our yearly cultural fest is named ROOTS. It’s a 7-day fest where mostly evening events include JAM (Just A minute), debates, treasure hunt, band performance, student night etc. Along with this we have 3-days workshops on various topics be it dance, music, design related or whatever the student body wishes to learn.
When it comes to sports a lot of events happen. Amity cup is our yearly cricket tournament amongst different departments including the alumni. Apart from cricket, football leagues, volleyball leagues etc. are held at the university level. Each department has a sports secretary who is responsible for organizing various other tournaments such as badminton, table-tennis, kabaddi etc. All departments have their own TT tables and very often you would find students playing with their faculties too.
CEPT is known for its Navratri. The decorations, installations, even the mataji’s temple is made by the students and is acknowledged by everybody.
Various other festivals are celebrated considering the diverse places students come from to study in the university such as Pongal, Vishu, Gudi padwa, Onam, Holi, Lohri etc.
Extra-curricular activities: almost every other week we have guest lectures, presentations by people from various countries, states and cities.
Every February, faculty of architecture organizes Kurula Varkey Design forum where final year student’s projects are discussed, reviewed and competitions are held.
The university hosted Archiprix this February (the first in Asia): All university-level training colleges around the world are invited to take part by selecting and submitting their best graduation project. It forms the largest presentation of graduation work and offers unrivalled insight into current trends in design education globally and architecture generally.
The seniors and juniors get along very well. Very often one would see them having tea together in the mornings as well as working together in studios. A lot of us take design discussions with them and it truly helps us in our work. We have a very strong student community. Each department has its own student council where frequently GBMs (general body meetings) happen and day-to-day issues related to academics, sports, cultural activities etc. are discussed and implemented upon.
Food is not at all an issue. Our canteen serves good variety and delicious food. The canteen provides an option of monthly payment of food (breakfast, lunch, dinner) for those who stay in hostels and as paying guests. We also have a stall of Radhika which serves great south Indian food. There is a stall of Amul as well. Apart from that we have the Chauraha Art Café near Kanoria and Zen café at Amdavad ni Gufa. The Khau Gali (Foodie street) at the Main gate is an added advantage for us and is a favourite place to hangout for all the college students having colleges in the university area.
CEPT does not have its own hostel. However, the Ahmedabad Education Society hostels are very near to the campus.
The college provides us great support. We have a Student Services Office(SSO) completely dedicated for making our life easier in the campus. The SSO provides academic, financial, medical, residential and other support services to all students of CEPT University, including International students, exchange students and student interns. It is the first stop for prospective students, where academic counselling, consultations and Open House are organized prior to Admissions. It also serves as the single point of access for family, parents or local guardians of all students. Last, but not the least, the SSO works closely with and supports the Student activities at CEPT, including the Students’ Council, Campus Radio, and other Student Clubs on campus.
For more details about admission and the college you can contact:
(She wont be available on phone until July 18th as she is out of country)
SWS website: http://sws.cept.ac.in/
Social media links:
1. Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CEPTUniversity1
2. Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ceptuniversity1
3. Snapchat: ceptuniversity