6 Years at D Y Patil International University, Akurdi, Pune(DYPIU)

In 6 years of its existence , DYPIU has been trendsetter in many ways for the whole country!

I completed my 5 years tenure at TIFAC on April 24, 2018. During farewell, my colleagues asked me what was my next plan. To keep suspense about my plans, I mentioned that I have 3 things in mind : (1) To catch up on sleep (2) To spend time with my grandson (who was about 5 months old at that time!) (3) To write a book.
However from TIFAC, I directly went to airport and took a flight to Pune in the evening. Next day (April 25, 2018), a press conference was organized to announce the starting of D Y Patil International Univ at Akurdi campus in Pune. I took a photo of nameplate and shared with my TIFAC colleagues about my next engagement and broke the suspense!

Name plate during press conference on April 25, 2018
Byte for press on April 25, 2018

On the same afternoon, I had the fortune of meeting Dr D Y Patil (“Dada” as he is affectionately called), founder of D Y Patil Educational group. I found him to be very humble and affectionate. I also took his permission to create a “Digital Avatar” of him (a project I was working for sometime), which he willingly gave.

First meeting with Dr D Y Patil (“Dada”)

We started DYPIU with 6 programs with a total intake of about 500 students in 2018. These were BBA, BCA, BCom, BA-JMC, BDes and BSc(Biotechnology).
I took time to understand the existing system and the resources available.
From day one, we emphasized on following international system with Team Teaching, Large classes etc planned. Digital and Future was part of University DNA. Following this, first major innovative step was to start BTech(CSE) program in 2019 with completely changed program structure and flexibility. It was a risky step but was lucky to get support of management. Here is the blog I wrote about this in Nov-Dec 2018 and opened up my ideas to the world seeking advice and comments.
Award Winning Next Generation B Tech(Comp Sci and Engg) at D Y Patil Int Univ, Akurdi, Pune

This became a landmark decision as it led to change across the nation as described in my blog:
How Artificial Intelligence Got into India’s Curriculum

It also had innovative concepts like “Lab in Bag” to move India towards hardware/embedded systems development:
“Lab in Bag” concept at D Y Patil International Univ, Akurdi, Pune

It was also designed to be future proof due to built in flexibility in the program:
How BTech(CSE) program at DYPIU is future-proof?

BTech(CSE) program in 2019 started with a satisfactory response but grew to be the flagship program for DYPIU. In 2019, we also added Digital Fabrication Lab (e.g. 3D printer etc) that was made part of most of the programs e.g BTech(CSE), BDes etc. This initiative also led to a major impact across country with Prof Prabhat Ranjan Chairing IDEALab committee of AICTE:
Digital Fabrication Movement in India

It was in 2019 that we started to build infrastructure to house the futuristic DYPIU. However as the construction was going on, we were hit by pandemic and had to cancel the foundation day ceremony at late night scheduled for March 14, 2020 due to instruction from state govt.
Just as DYPIU was trying to take baby steps, we were hit by the “storm” of pandemic! But it helped us strongly as online classes exposed our system to larger segment of society and demand went high.
It was in 2020, that we launched two more innovative programs :(1) BTech(Bioengg) and (2) MBA (Digital Business).
DYPIU Launches Multitrack Futuristic BTech(Bioengineering) Program

We gave flexibility to students in this program by the concept of bridge course and not totally dependent on choice of subjects by students during 12th. This was implemented by AICTE in even more flexible way in 2021. MBA(Digital Business) program was also picked up by other institutions.

In 2022, we had discussion regarding starting special programs for working professionals of Industry to upgrade technological skills in view of fast changing technology landscape. Finally this program was launched in summer of 2023. AICTE also followed with a similar scheme:

In 2024, we have taken bold step to start the first program of BTech (Semiconductor Engg) in the country. This is very much aligned with the tremendous growth expected in Semiconductor Industry in India. with launch of multiple projects over last few months. We have also launched core engineering branches of Civil, Chemical and Mechanical, where others are closing them down. These programs have been completely revamped in view of technological changes. They would be extremely important for continuous growth in infrastructure and manufacturing that is expected in India.

During these 6 years, DYPIU has seen international quality infrastructure development as well as huge resource of modern teaching aids and equipments.
With our focus on research, we have been promoting interdisciplinary research in many ways. We were the first in the country to start Project Sanlayan – A Nuclear Fusion project with private investment.

We seem to have set standards high and need to continue to work hard to come up to the expectations!

Author: Prabhat Ranjan

Prof. Prabhat Ranjan is Vice Chancellor, D Y Patil International University, Akurdi, Pune. He was heading India's Technology Think Tank, TIFAC(tifac.org.in) as its Executive Director since April 2013 to April 2018. Earlier he was Professor at Dhirubhai Ambani Institute for Information and Communication Technology, Gandhinagar (DA-IICT) since 2002. He was educated in Netarhat School(near Ranchi), IIT Kharagpur and Delhi University. He received his Ph D from University of California, Berkeley where he carried our research on “Nuclear Fusion” at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory during 1983-86. He immediately returned to India after this and carried out research in Nuclear Fusion area at Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics, Calcutta and Institute for Plasma Research(IPR), Gandhinagar. He played a major role in India’s Nuclear Fusion program and was Project Leader of the largest operational Indian Fusion Reactor, ADITYA, at Institute for Plasma Research from 1996-2002. His current interests include applications of Wireless Sensor Network to Wildlife, Planetary Exploration (Chandrayaan mission), Nuclear Fusion, Healthcare, Agriculture etc. He has received National Science Talent Search Award, IBM Faculty Innovation Grant and HP Innovate 2009 award, NPEDP-Mphasis Universal Design Award 2012, Bihar Gaurav Samman 2012 etc. In March 2022, he was also honored with EduStar India’s Most Impactful Vice Chancellor Award for 2021-22. He has been recognized by outlook among few visionaries, who can lead India towards 5 Trillion Dollar Economy. He has been also honoured with Maharashtra Ratna Gaurav Puraskar by Shalini Foundation in 2024. He is also recognized among the top “100 Great IITians : Dedicated to the Service of the Nation”.

2 thoughts on “6 Years at D Y Patil International University, Akurdi, Pune(DYPIU)”

  1. Beautiful depiction of the journey so far. The passion, pride, and sense of belonging, is something that we could sense while reading. Best wishes!

  2. Really proud to learn about your contributions to the higher education sector. Your novel and innovative measures coupled with dedication and determination have taken the University to great heights. Hearty congratulations Wishing you the very best in all your endeavours sirji

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