Guwahati College of Architecture offers Northeast’s first MPlan degree

A view of the Shri Sarbeswar Das Knowledge Campus near Guwahati International Airport

The decade-old Guwahati College of Architecture (GCA) on Thursday announced Northeast’s first full time post graduation Master of Planning (MPlan) programme in Urban & Regional Planning. Promoted by the Dona Foundation, the group also announced the region’s first BSc degree in Fashion and Textile Design and BSc degree in Interior Design courses from the Guwahati College of Design (GCD), part of the Shri Sarbeswar Das Knowledge Campus near Guwahati International Airport.

The MPlan course, with specialization in urban and regional planning, will be of 4 semesters (two years) and is open to graduates in the field of architecture, civil engineering and planning besides post graduates in geography, sociology and economics. The course will broadly focus on acquiring specialized knowledge in the subjects for the development of well structured cities, urban-regions, along with the sustainable management of towns and cities. The course is affiliated as a two year full time post graduation programme to Assam Science and Technology University, Guwahati (ASTU). A post graduate of this course is eligible for registration as Town Planner in the Institute of Town Planners, India (ITPI).

L-R - Nawaz Ali, Biswa Dutta, Abani Das, Daksha Das at the press meet announcing the new courses by GCA
L-R – Nawaz Ali, Biswa Dutta, Abani Das, Daksha Das at the press meet announcing the new courses by GCA

Commenting on the announcement, managing trustee of Dona Foundation, Abani Das said, “This program focuses on fostering and understanding the ways that cities and sites are constructed physically, socially and environmentally. GCA is the first college in Northeast India to offer MPlan. We are thankful to Assam Science and Technology University, Guwahati who have agreed to offer the degree programme. We hope that students from the Northeastern states and other places will take benefit of the course and extend a helping hand in the development of the region. While the country is moving towards building smart cities, these experts will take the lead in developing such projects. So, we hope that students from the region and otherwise will take full advantage of the course and be a part of the development journey.”

Abani Das added that the college has been providing 100% placements besides numerous scholarships to the meritorious students. “Our graduates have been placed in a number of eminent companies, such as Hindustan Steel Construction Ltd, Jasbir Sawhney and Associates, Designers Guild to name a few. Some students have established their own firms like Studio Architects by Samiran Gogoi, Gandiva and Associates by Indrajit Swargiary and Echo Shell by Sujata Hazarika and Bipul Barman to name a few. Thus, they are contributing to the development of their surroundings and the economy,” he said. The college offers upto 90% scholarships in tuition fees to high rank holders.

Dona Foundation established Guwahati College of Architecture (GCA) in 2006 with a purpose to provide an academically strong platform to students who wanted to leave an enduring impression in the field of architecture. The college, inaugurated by then chief minister Tarun Gogoi, now offers 5-year bachelor degree in architecture, 2-year master degree in architecture and 2-year master degree in planning. The new campus – Shri Sarbeswar Das Knowledge Campus – inaugurated by then Union minister and present chief minister of Assam, Sarbananda Sonowal in 2015, now also houses the Guwahati College of Design which offers bachelors degree in fashion & textile design and interior design.

Then Union minister and present Chief Minister of Assam, Sarbananda Sonowal inaugurating the Shri Sarbeswar Das Knowledge Campus in 2015
Then Union minister and present Chief Minister of Assam, Sarbananda Sonowal inaugurating the Shri Sarbeswar Das Knowledge Campus in 2015

“The Dona Foundation believes in bringing together aesthetics, design, comfort, planning, endurance, and solid technical expertise in amalgamation. We look to bridge the gap between raw talent, and skilled experts, putting together technology, humanities and aesthetics into a special curriculum, most suited for the students of today and tomorrow, as we focus on holistic development,” said Saahil Das, director at Dona Group of Industries, addressing the press gathering at the Guwahati Press Club on Thursday.

“GCA aims to provide its students with all the needful facilities within the campus and allow them to grow and harness their skills. GCA has been able to help students fulfill their dream to make a career in architecture and we are happy to announce this new programme,”said Biswa Datta, academic director at GCA.

Besides the MPlan course, the college also provides Bachelors in Architecture recognized by the Council of Architecture. “The B Arch programme is divided into 10 semesters and it incorporates design and planning, arts and humanities, science and technologies, practice and management components. This dynamic program ensures the progress of a student from a raw talent to a refined skilled architect. Students undertake practical training as a part of the curriculum and the state-of-the-art facilities at the new campus, near the Guwahati Airport, helps them harness the different aspects of architecture,” said GCA principal Nawaz Ali.

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