Bro. Melchior Tom( Director)
Warm welcome to “St. Francis Institute of Technology”!
St. Francis Institute of Technology (SFIT) is in its 12th year of existence, but the Society, “The Society of the Franciscan Brothers” that owns and runs it has a history of a hundred and odd years in the field of education and other related social service activities throughout India and abroad. Within this span of eleven years, SFIT has achieved a reputation for its consistent performance, both in the University and the corporate world. Right from its inception SFIT is ranked one among the top six colleges under the University of Mumbai. Our placement record as well, confirms this claim! We are at work to make SFIT one of the most sort-after destinations for knowledge thirsty students.
As I was putting my thoughts together for this ‘Message’, I remembered a famous quote from our former President, Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam, who said, “Moral leadership involves two aspects. First it requires the ability to have compelling and powerful dreams or visions for human betterment. Moral leadership requires a disposition to do the right thing and influence others also to do the right things. In sum, enquiry, creativity, technology, entrepreneurial and moral leadership are the five capacities required to be built through the education process. If we develop in all our students these five capacities, we will produce, ‘Autonomous Learners’, self directed, self controlled, lifelong learners who will have the capacity to both, respect authority and at the same time to be able to question the authority, in an appropriate manner. These are the leaders who would work together as a ‘Self-organizing Network’ and transform any nation into a developed nation in a time bound manner”.
Precisely, these are a few areas that SFIT is trying to address through its well-thought out “Vision and Mission” statements, in order to contribute its mite towards our nation building process. Three salient features of these statements are ‘Chrysalis’, ‘Entrepreneurship’ and Ethical Values. SFIT has been and will continue to be a chrysalis to its students by emanating positive energy for their graded development into entrepreneurs/ intrapreneurs with ethical values! This is our vision for every single SFITian! There are plans to set up an incubator to benefit our budding entrepreneurs. Thus we assist in experimenting and application of knowledge for the public good! Simultaneously, equal emphasis is also being laid on acquisition/assimilation of time-tested values/ethics in one’s life. For, we believe that ‘ethics’ is the soul of economics.
There is a need for higher educational programes to provide ample scope for research and enquiry to develop required skills. We need to inculcate a spirit of research and self learning in the curriculum, instead of the present system of exam oriented learning processes. The students must be motivated and inspired by formal visits to industry, study tours, and so on, followed by journal writing and self experimentation to ignite their inquisitive minds. Enquiry and research based process needs to be promoted. Innovation must be the main characteristic of higher education. Countries with higher innovation targets, progress on the path of sustainable development. Today, this is just not happening in India, because we are mainly service providers. We need to be creators of technology. This can be achieved only through a proper mix of research and self learning in our educational curriculum.
At SFIT, we believe that ‘knowledge’ is what makes one unique! And an engineer, an innovator! An innovator is a leader, pacesetter, trendsetter, etc, and surely, not a copy-cat. Realising this fact, at SFIT we are concerned about developing ‘Research and Development’ content in our academic activities. SFIT is proud of its exclusive science magazine, ‘Sanshodan’, a unique contribution, which is brought out every semester. This provides a platform to the faculty, staff and students to find expression for their new ideas. It also provides a wider platform for serious discussions on topics of particular interest. At SFIT, we are not satisfied with just bookish knowledge alone, but are encouraged to give physical shape to their innovative ideas through our ‘Research and Development’ lab, partnering like-minded Industries (currently four such projects are underway). We are truly determined to take this activity to its logical conclusion.
We at SFIT shall continue to be innovative in ‘igniting’ the young minds to ‘tread the road less travelled’ to attain personal, and thereby, national wellbeing. I am extremely pleased to extend a warm welcome to visit our institute and be part of us in realising the noble dream in making our nation truly a world economic power with integrity, in its true sense!
Bro. Melchior Tom