Saturday, May 15, 2010

Poor man's IIT coach in Time's "Best of Asia" list

"Super 30", the Patna-based institute which has been coaching poor students for IITs, has found a place in Time magazine's list of Best of Asia 2010.T ime magazine has described Super 30 as the "Best Cram School" in its list. Last year, 30 of them came from one coaching centre in Patna, capital of the impoverished north Indian state of Bihar. That may not seem like many, but for the Super 30 centre its a pass rate of 100%, the magazine said in its latest issue. What makes that feat even more remarkable is that these students are the poorest of the poor, who would otherwise never be able to afford full-time coaching, it added. The institutes director-cum-founder Anand Kumar was thrilled by the latest recognition showered on his efforts. A student enrolled in Super 30 gets full scholarships, including accommodation and food.

The institute has become so popular that every year, thousands of students make a beeline for getting an entry into it. They now have to pass a competitive test just to get into Super 30, and then commit themselves to a year of 16-hour study every day. Since 2003, 182 of a total 210 students have made it to one of the IITs.

Time magazine said the project has even won the notice of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh who met Mr. Kumar in February to hear his plan to launch a national programme for talented rural children. In a country that has struggled to offer those students even basic education, Super 30 is an example of what's possible when human potential is tapped, the magazine said. The institute was started by Mr. Kumar along with Bihar's Additional Director-General of Police Abhayanand in 2002 in Patna. But two years ago, Abhayanand dissociated himself from the institute.

Source: The Economic Times, May 15, 2010

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