Government Engineering College Development Trust

Vinson’s alma mater, Government Engineering College, Thrissur, is widely regarded as one of the most prestigious professional colleges in Kerala. Producing some of the finest luminaries in the field of science and technology, the college is hailed for its GECT Profile Picinvaluable contributions to the nation over the past 50 years. Since its inception in the year 1957, the college has consistently grown in both stature and status. However as has happened with most Government Colleges across Kerala the “Government” tag has had serious implications on its growth. Waning infrastructure, abject dearth of facilities and poor maintenance has overshadowed the glorious milestones accomplished by these colleges over the past half a decade.

While visiting the college in 2013 July to celebrate the 25th year of their graduation, Vinson and his alumni friends were very upset seeing the awful situation of the college campus and the buildings. In an attempt to put things right, Vinson and 3 of his alumni friends living in the US has decided an exciting new initiative called the ‘GECT Development Trust’ which aims to bring together the different alumni of the college scattered across various corners of the world in a mission to make the institution “the best engineering college in Kerala”. The trust has been started in collaboration with the current student body of the College. Vinson is leading the overall coordination of the trust and global outreach to alumni and friends of GECT.  Mr. Binoy Abraham, Vinson’s classmate and a structural engineer and a builder/developer based in Sarasota, Florida, is leading the effort in fund raising as well as activities on the ground. GECTDT7Their class mate and current faculty member Dr. Nowshaja Iqbal (Dept. of Civil Engg.), 2 other faculties, Josna Raphael (Dept. of Architecture) and Manoj Kumar KV (Dept. of Computer Science) are helping to coordinate the action on the ground. Anto Chittilappilly, running a successful IT
business based in Boston, Mumbai and Kochi Infopark and Sasi Eswaran, a successful IT professional based in San Francisco Bay area, are helping in various other leadership functions.

The trust aims to generate an amount of Rs 3 Crore by collecting an amount of Rs 10,000 or higher from a minimum of 120 members from every batch right from 1980 to 2005. The total amount collected in this manner is expected to give a return of Rs 30 lakhs every year at 10% interest, which when clubbed with the 30 lakhs plus PWD has for college’s annual maintenance will be sufficient enough to take care of the maintenance of the buildings and 125 acre campus of the college. Every GECTDT3transaction, each donation received and all the money spent on the developmental activities of the college shall be published in the website, thus making the entire process as transparent as possible.

The vision of the trust includes raising the academic standards by seeking the collaboration of international educational entities, providing students with access to high quality libraries, facilitating practical training to students in top notch corporations, providing a safe and hygienic campus environment, implementing self-sustaining projects that are privately funded and managed and ultimately addressing  the maintenance GECTDT4related issues of the college so that the faculty and students can enjoy an atmosphere that is conducive to crafting top notch engineers for the nation.

The trust has started rolling out its action on the ground with an initial contribution of Rs. 25,000 Vinson donated to remove the overgrown grass and weeds, prior to the national level Techfest ‘Dyuthi’ which was conducted in the month of GECTDT2September 2013. The entire college campus grounds were cleared of the overgrown grass and weeds through a combined effort of various students. This marked the fruitful beginning of what is expected to be a sparkling revolution that could change the way people look at Government Engineering Colleges and other public institutions. The fundraising started after formally registering the trust in late 2013 with Rs 1 lakh each contributed by its four founder members including Vinson. The initial funds are being utilized to provide a facelift to the college. Recently painting of the compound wall was undertaken by the trust. The trust is providing pressure washers, paint, brushes and other equipment and students are doing the job themselves. Various professors joined their hands for the project as well. As students are doing the manual labor, the trust was able to get a lot more for its money. The trust has raised Rs. 17 lakhs so far and has spent just over 1 lakh. GECTDT6Replacing the broken water cooler in the main building and upgrading the toilets in the main building are the immediate future projects planned.GECTDT5

The trust is planning a mega fund raising event in 2014 in the campus with prominent business leaders and entrepreneurs who have an interest in making the college “the best engineering college in Kerala” and a “jewel of Tichur”. GECT Development trust hereby invites all alumni and friends of Govt Engineering College, Thrissur currently leading their lives in various parts of the world to be a part of this revolution to make this prolific institution, the finest college in the state. Let’s rebuild Kerala one brick, one stroke of the brush at a time.