The concept of ‘smart city’ has become a passion not only for corporators and developers but also for the youth who want to build a career in sync with smart cities, as is evident in the increasing number of admissions to related courses. Sources at Cept University and Gujarat Technological University’s (GTU) Graduate School of Smart Cities Development have noted a whopping increase in the number of students opting for their courses. While the former offers two six-month long elective courses to students in Faculty of Planning and Faculty of Technology respectively, GTU’s Graduate School of Smart Cities Development offers a fourmonth long online course.
As per Sejal Patel, associate professor at Cept University and one of the faculty members who teaches a course, while the Faculty of Planning course called ‘Smart Cities’ was launched in 2015, the Faculty of Technology course ‘Understanding Smart Cities and Technologies’ and will be introduced in the upcoming monsoon semester. While the planning elective has a total of 50 seats, in 2014-15 it saw 58 registrations while it has seen 150 students expressing interest in the course for the 2015-16 sessions. Only 68 could register due to lack of seats.
The second course, meanwhile, has already got 40 registrations for 40 seats. “Till date, there have been several development projects but students have been unable to participate in them as most of them do not have vacancy by the time the students pass out. However, the smart city projects will continue for a couple of years and students will be able to implement what they learn. In fact, we already have students working on some of the smart city projects that have started in the cities like Udaipur,” said Patel.
Meanwhile, Professor Rajnikant Patel, director of the Graduate School of Smart Cities Development said, “The courses are useful for students from all backgrounds as once he/she has cleared the course, they will be equipped to apply the learning.” The institute launched the online course in April 2015 and for the current session they have 54 registered students. “Of these, 33 joined in after Ahmedabad was announced to be one among the Smart City Mission,” the professor said, adding, “These courses give an added boost to students from all professions.”