The Western Regional Campus of Institute of Engineering (IoE) began M Sc in Rock and Tunnel, the first of its kind in the country.
The college said that such a course was started aiming to produce skilled human resources for tunnel engineering in the country. Campus Chief Ram Prasad Poudel said that 20 students including three girls are selected based on merit list from the entrance exam conducted by the IoE. The students graduated in Civil Engineering are eligible to apply for this two-year course which is largely practical by its nature.
Currently, the students are taking virtual classes due to the coronavirus pandemic as they were expected to take their formal classes from the beginning of May. Campus Chief Poudel said, “There is huge demand for human resource in rock and tunnel sector. We have begun classes to produce human resources needed for the country.”
The campus is expected to collaborate with other likeminded institutions including Nepal Tunneling Association, Hydro Lab and others. The campus said that Nepali scholars in different countries in this field would be invited as the guest faculties for the class, according to Coordinator of Rock and Tunnel Department, Kaushal Chandra GC.
Tunnel is inevitable for rail way route, roads, hydropower projects and irrigation in the country like ours, GC said. “The Gandaki State has also expressed its interest,” he shared. The curriculum of this subject has been focused on study of the geographical condition, rock exploration, exploration technology and construction technology, said coordinator GC.
Gandaki State government has supported the study of tunnel engineering. The government, which had provided one million rupees to prepare the curriculum, has provided two million rupees in current fiscal year to run the programme. Dean at Institute of Engineering Studies, Dr Shashidhar Ram Joshi, shared that the Institute would launch new courses as per the nation’s demand and requirements.
Extending best wishes to students of first batch, he expressed belief that capable human resources envisaged by the country would be produced. Norwegian Science and Technology University is to provide technical support to the Western Regional Campus for the same.
Chairperson of Nepal Tunneling Association, Dr Gyanendra Lal Shrestha, expressed commitment for collaboration for making the course successful. The Campus has also started teaching Geomatics Engineering in Master's degree from this year.