Devchand College, Arjunnagar
‘An Educational Institution with Quality and Excellence’
Devchand College is a premier and renowned grant-in-aid institution affiliated to Shivaji University, Kolhapur in the State of Maharashtra. Padmabhushan Shriman Seth Devchandji Shah established the college in 1960 with the sole objective of transforming lives of thousands of sons and daughters of poor farmers, landless laborers, tobacco and beedi workers in and around forty villages surrounding the town of Nipani through the potent tool of quality higher education. Since its inception, Devchand College has earned fame and name as an institution with quality par excellence.
The college is run by an educational trust, Janata Shikshan Mandal, which has attained Jain minority status in the year 2011. The management of the college consists of highly educated and renowned persons who are driven by service motive, proactive, dynamic and democratic in approach. The head of the institution is an academician with leadership qualities, executive skills and has great passion and commitment for the all round development of the institution. The institution has a vibrant Internal Quality Assurance Cell which plays catalytic role in nurturing and developing the quality of education as per the philosophy and guidelines of NAAC with great precision and devotion. The assessment period of the third cycle accreditation (2011-2016) has witnessed notable achievements in every aspect.
The college offers conventional UG and PG courses in science, arts and commerce streams. Besides, several need-based certificate and diploma courses are offered to students. Being an affiliated college, the syllabi are designed by the affiliating University which has been accredited with ‘A’ grade by NAAC. Our faculty, one in senate, one in academic council and faculty of commerce, one in BOS and ten in syllabus revision committee play active role in policy making and revising the syllabi of the affiliating University. Several members of the staff have offered concrete suggestions to the University regarding the design and revision of curriculum. The college has organized three workshops on revised curricula on behalf of the University. To train the students in competitive examination, spoken English and computational skills, the syllabi for such courses are designed by our faculty. Students are motivated to undergo these courses so as to enhance their employment potential. The institution has two distance education centers which provide additional opportunity for students to obtain dual degrees, namely, (1) Centre for distance education, Shivaji University, Kolhapur and (2) Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University, (YCMOU) Nashik. During the third cycle, our college has introduced onePG Course, two diploma courses, ten certificate courses, and one distance education centre. The institution offers academic flexibility to the students through its wide range of courses, optional subjects, and add-on courses, which can contribute to the development of our nation. The UGC guidelines and the vision and mission of the institution are adhered to while restructuring the courses and curricula.
To provide quality education to the rural students from deprived classes, we try our best to accommodate maximum number of students every year. Qualified and competent teachers, ICT-enabled classrooms (9) and video-conferencing unit, sufficient infrastructure, academic atmosphere, remedial coaching and facilities to advanced learners and personal attention help to maintain quality in TLE. The student-centric teaching and learning ensure interactive, participative and experiential learning. The conduct of unit tests, internal examinations and semester examinations, fair and transparent evaluation process have made examination and evaluation processes effective.
The number of girl students and students from deprived classes has increased during the assessment period augmenting the national policy of inclusive development. The percentage of students availing EBC scholarship is declining as the students admitted in the additional non-grant divisions cannot avail EBC facility. There are 29 Ph.D., 4 M.Phil. and 15 NET/SET qualified teachers to shoulder the responsibility of quality TLE. Out of 41 permanent faculties, 24.42% faculties have worked as resource persons in IN/N/R workshops/ conferences. 73% faculties have participated in the IN/N/R workshops/ conferences. 61% faculties have presented papers in IN conferences, 73% in national conferences and 7.3 % in regional conferences. 5 members of faculty are recipients of awards whereas, 20 students have won merit scholarships. Our library repository has been enriched by 160 e-notes and 375 PPTs prepared by the faculty. All these factors contribute to the effectiveness of TLE.
The college has ambience conducive for research. Four research laboratories to promote research in pure sciences and one common research facility centre to facilitate interdisciplinary research in social sciences are under construction. It has taken a big leap in the area of research and publications during the last five years. One major and thirteen minor research projects have been sanctioned by UGC during the last five years. Ten project proposals have been sent to different funding agencies. The amount received for research projects in last three cycles is 40,000/-,3,44,000/- and 20,82,000/- respectively.
During the assessment period 151 research papers have been published by the faculty in international journals with impact factor in the range of 1.0285 to 8.1; 44 research papers in national journals and 43 papers in conference proceedings. The average impact factor of the journals is 2.044. Ten books have been published by the faculty of which four are by international publishers. One peer reviewed inter-disciplinary international journal is published by the department of History. There are 320 research papers presented in international/national conferences/seminars. One multidisciplinary international conference, seven UGC sponsored national seminars/conferences and one ICSSR sponsored national seminar were organized. One DST sponsored INSPIRE Internship Science Camp, twelve workshops under lead college scheme of the University were organized. This year two national seminars have been sanctioned by UGC. The institution has played a major role in attracting eminent personalities in research to visit the campus.
As the college is situated in rural setup, there is limited scope for industry centered consultancy services. However, consultancy activities are gradually gaining momentum. Several members of the faculty offer honorary consultancy to other academic bodies, NGOs, peoples’ movements, farmers and small businesses and voluntary agencies in the areas of accreditation, environmental issues, soft-skills, communication skills, personality development, social, educational and cultural issues etc.
Our institution promotes institution-neighborhood-community network through its extension programs organized through NSS, NCC, Women’s Forum Swayamsiddha, ISR Cell and Nature and Adventure Club with the help of students. They develop insight in the problems of rural society and deprived classes of our nation.
The college has a huge campus spread over 45 acres of land. Several valuable improvements and additions have been done in the previous five years namely, construction of women’s hostel, face lifting of existing science laboratories; construction of six class rooms (three from UGC Golden Jubilee grant); establishment of three more independent computer laboratories with servers and 125 N-computing systems plus existing 25 computers with full battery back-up; development of 8 lane athletic track; botanical garden in 2.25 acres of land with rare and endangered species of plants; rest-room for girls, establishment of green house in 5000 sq. ft. area for a plant nursery; a canteen with separate dinning arrangements for boys and girls; addition of several equipments in the laboratories; addition of several books for library; automation of administrative office and library; construction of guest house; construction of check-dam, improvement of drinking water facility for students and staff with water filters and coolers, internet facility, health centers, departmental chambers and so on. The college has one generator with 15 KVA capacity with sound proof system, 6 UPS with 22 KVA capacity have been installed to provide uninterrupted power supply. The special infrastructure facilities for students with physical disabilities are also provided.
Creation of an inspiring, caring and compassionate campus for students of rural areas has been one the fundamental goals of our institution. Hence planned efforts are made for holistic development of the students. Remedial coaching for slow learners and personal counseling through mentor care programs bring about enlightened awareness and enhance their capabilities. Different cells organize programs for training, career guidance, placement training and campus recruitment drives for the students. Considerable contribution is made by the alumni by providing financial aid to the needy and deserving students, infrastructural development, training and placement of students. The Anti-Ragging cell takes measures to curb ragging. Students avail various scholarships and schemes of financial support. Encouragement and support for students’ participation in games, tournaments, cultural, co-curricular, extra-curricular activities and competitions in and out of the college, has brought laurels to the students and the institution. Feedback from students is validated by revising the syllabi and planning for skill enhancement programs. Students are motivated to present and publish their articles in college magazine and participate and win in the collegiate / inter-collegiate competitions.
The performance of our college in the various University examinations, sports and cultural activities during the last five years is quite encouraging. Some of the highlights of our students’ achievements are: 10 students obtained Shivaji University Merit Scholarship; in sports, volley ball zonal championship for twenty seventh time, inter-zonal championship for twenty second time in 2015-16; Amit Nimbalkar secured gold medal for India at World Power-lifting competitions at Las Vegas in the USA in September, 2014; a silver medal for India at Asian Power-lifting Competitions at Hongkong in December, 2015; Ganesh Mali bagged a bronze medal for India at Glasgow Commonwealth games in August, 2014; cricket team won zonal and inter-zonal championship in December, 2015 and our players shine in the inter-University tournaments too. Our artists prove their talent in the youth festival of the University.
The management has evolved an open, democratic and transparent style of functioning making the college a seat of learning through shared responsibilities and shared action. The principal plays the catalytic role of a planner, organizer and motivator in the conduct of all activities while the top management plays the role of a guardian, facilitator and torch-bearer for all the segments of the institution. Participative decision making supplemented by decentralization of authority and responsibility creates condusive academic atmosphere at all levels. Administrative responsibilities are shared and shouldered by the Principal, two Vice-Principals, IQAC coordinator, office superintendent, librarian, gymkhana chairman, hostel rector, HODs and committee conveners. Institutional policies and plans are evaluated and revised on the basis of information collected through formal and informal feedback system. Qualified faculty members are recruited by adhering to Government norms and their competence is upgraded through faculty development programs conducted by IQAC and by Academic Staff Colleges. The professional development programs for the non-teaching staff enable them in the effective discharge of their duties. Careful planning of budget for academic and administrative activities and monitoring the proper and optimal utilization of financial resources through internal and external audits ensure sound financial management at the college. Various welfare schemes are made available for teaching and non-teaching staff through employee cooperative credit society. IQAC designs and implements quality enhancement policies and strategic plans for the institution in consultation with the trustees, Governing body, the Principal and LMC. Annual academic audit is done by the top management for assessment of the academic and research activities of the faculty.
The institution maintains greenery and pleasant environment on the campus. It conducts green audit and adopts several eco-friendly measures with a sense of responsibility. Some innovations introduced are: academic audit (Mock NAAC), value education, library automation, automation of administrative system, academic innovations and rotating discipline committees. The college follows a number of healthy practices some of which are: (1) Add-on skill development coursesin consonance with the national objectives; (2) Student enrichment programms: A Students’ initiative; (3) Annual sports meet and cultural program of management and staff; (4) Annual award function for achiever employees, (5) Felicitation of former faculty at alumni meet, (6) Annual trekking for staff and students.
With all our strengths being utilized and expanded, and weaknesses minimized, we are marching towards the goal of transforming rural students into humane and responsible citizens of the country.