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Tuesday, Mar 10, 2009

New Delhi
Inside delhi

For maths-lovers

The Mathematical Sciences Foundation, a non-profit educational society, has announced its summer internship programme for June this year with the objective of creating greater public awareness and out-of-the-box thinking for real world applications through mathematics and computers.

The programme, to be conducted from June 1 to July 15, will encourage teamwork, communication and computational skills.

Some of these projects will be on unusual themes, such as plotting the orbit of Chandrayaan, improving the traffic pattern on the Capital’s much talked about Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) corridor, producing a film on the historic Jantar Mantar observatory and understanding the Duckworth-Lewis method in one-day cricket. Students from schools and colleges can apply for the internship. The interns will be paid a stipend.

“Selected students will be taught computer programming and software packages along with maths. They will have access to a computer laboratory. They will also be provided free lodging and rail fare if from outstation,” said a Foundation release.

The students will be mentored by an experienced faculty.

Candidates need to have an appreciation for mathematics. School children entering Classes XI and XII or appearing for the Class XII examination can apply. College students from Mathematics (Honours)/Statistics (Hons.)/B.Sc. (Programme)/B.Sc. Physics/B. Sc. Chemistry/B.A.(Economics)/B.Com. and B. Tech. are also eligible.

At the end of the internship, five students will be selected for an all-expenses-paid trip to scientific institutes in Bangalore during the winter break.

Interested candidates can visit www.mathscifound.org for more details. The last date for applying for school children is April 10 and for college students March 20.

Parul Sharma

A new look

British Council now sports a new look. Post makeover, the library has refurbished interiors, improved services and enhanced facilities.

The library, a landmark on Kasturba Gandhi Marg in the heart of the Capital, has gone the extra mile to woo bibliophiles. And there aren’t just books to act as baits. There is space for music and provision for online connectivity too.

In keeping with the custom of “evolving” through the ages, the library now has a design that has “people at the heart of it”. The library is being presented as “part lounge, part coffee shop, part ideas store….redesigned to create an inspiring environment”.

The Council is also planning to organise events at different locations around Delhi to ensure that visitors are not deterred by long distances or lack of parking facilities around the library.

The opening of the new centre will be marked by a performance by Indian Ocean, a well-known music band that has popularised indigenous music. An interactive art installation by Vishal Dhar will also be on display.

Visitors can play the music of their choice from a “music shower”.

The library, which will soon become wireless-enabled, has a collection of over 37,000 books and 4,500 DVDs.

Smriti Kak Ramachandran

Women for the polls

To give women an opportunity to contest elections, the Centre for Social Research, an organisation working for empowerment of women, is going to train 1,000 women in leadership skills.

Through its United Nations Democracy Fund project titled “Enhancing the role of women in strengthening democracy”, CSR plans to train this massive pool of women leaders by implementing a core strategy of “Train, contest and win” at three levels.

“Women’s leadership capacity will be built by imparting training to 1,000 prospective women leaders and by preparing and motivating them to contest elections for the State legislatures and Parliament. We will train them in the art of speech delivery so that they can strike a chord with the electorate. The essential grooming will be done by us. Eventually they will have to lobby with political parties. It depends how many tickets political parties are willing to give tickets to women candidates. The learning from the projects shall be shared with South Asian partners to build stronger foundation for democracy in South Asia,” says CSR director Ranjana Kumari.

Arguing that the country needs more women leaders in politics, Dr. Kumari adds that it is essential to train potential leaders as well as encourage those who are successful at the local governance level to enter the State Assemblies and Parliament.

Smriti Kak Ramachandran