Dear Students, Staff, Parents, Alumni/ae, Benefactors and Well Wishers,
A Christian Minority Higher Educational Institution, St. Xavier’s was founded in 1860 by a Catholic Minority Religious Body, the Society of Jesus, and was affiliated to the University of Calcutta in 1862. While preference is shown to the educational and cultural needs of the Christian Minority community and the poor i.e. socially and financially marginalized, admission is open to all irrespective of caste, creed and nationality. With a long and rewarding history of achievement of the Jesuits in education, our College community continues to move forward together with confidence, pride and enthusiasm. This institution was created with the objective of providing 360 degree quality education which will enable students not only to thrive in academics but also motivate them towards character building, leadership, extra and co-curricular activities. A very strong, dedicated and capable team of educators has always been the driving force in the growth of the College.
Principled on the motto “NIHIL ULTRA” meaning “NOTHING BEYOND” and with the vision to promote a society based on love, freedom, liberty, justice, equality and fraternity, St. Xavier’s College aims to form young men and women of competence, commitment, compassion and conscience – men and women for others. This is the ideology of Jesuit Education. This enables students to herald social change – national and global. The College aims to inculcate the highest intellectual standards through rigorous academic commitment and discipline. Students are inspired to aspire to higher levels of academic achievement by mastering the subjects they have chosen to study. The College stands committed to make teaching and learning “Student Centric” which makes the students think, analyse and work independently by inculcating original and creative thinking. Currently the College is offering 17 UG, 11 PG and 5 Doctoral programmes. I am proud to announce that as part of our expansion plan, two more PG courses, namely, M.A. in Sociology and M.Sc. in Economics were introduced in the 2020-21 academic session. Very recently, College has got approval for running Doctoral programme in Computer Science. More PG & Doctoral programmes have been planned to offer in near future. The future vision of St. Xavier’s College lies in the introduction of 15 Post-Graduate Departments and 15 Ph.D. Programmes within a span of five years from now.
As a recognition of our collective effort towards excellence, and also, for striving towards the motto of “Nihil Ultra”, different Government agencies released grants for the College. For instance, the departments of Microbiology and Biotechnology of our College received the prestigious DBT Builder Grant of Rs. 2.96 crores from the Department of Biotechnology, Government of India.
The Expert Committee of the Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Government of India, reviewed the Departments of Physics, Chemistry and Microbiology under the DBT Star College program.
St. Xavier’s College was awarded Grade ‘A’ by DBT and the subsequent release of grant under the DBT Star College Scheme was recommended.
Inclusive practices of the institution to impart holistic education are inherent in the system. The institution is completely secular in character. Students belong to every social class, community and linguistic group. They are trained to become men and women of competence, commitment, compassion and conscience. Equity and access in availability, special attention to the weaker sections and representation of women in all aspects ensure promotion of social justice. In order to support the holistic development of the students, College houses a number of Societies for enriching the students with various co-curricular activities like debate, drama, music, and dance and so on along with usual syllabus-oriented pedagogy.
The College understands the importance of a healthy mind and thus runs a full-fledged counselling cell with professional counsellors to look after the mental well-being of its staff student and other stakeholders.
Recently, a Wellness Centre has been formed by the College that consists of a gymnasium with modern equipment, a ICT room for seminars related to wellness and motivation – both for mental and physical wellbeing. Activities related to emotional health, sports and other such developments are also being encouraged.
Our commitment at St. Xavier’s College is to provide a conducive and intellectually challenging environment that will empower students to become innovative thinkers, creative problem solvers and inspired learners prepared to thrive in the 21st Century with a humane touch. High standards and expectations for each student in regard to academic performance, co-curricular participation, and responsible citizenship are the foundation of our teaching. It is with pride that we hold these high standards and ask each of our students to commit to maintain the extraordinary record of achievement and contribution that has been the legacy of Xaverians. We encourage all our students to develop high expectations about themselves, their work and their behaviour, which is an expression of our values of Personal Best, Integrity, Respect and Responsibility.
Our academic standards persistently improve, and the curriculum we offer is carefully designed to engage and enthuse, providing students with the necessary skills to prosper in an ever-changing world. The main emphasis is on teaching and learning with sufficient emphasis on research and consultancy. The College provides an environment and ambience of Learning and Teaching in Higher Education to support and promote research and innovative learning and teaching practices. With a state-of-the art Central Research Facility and renovated Observatory with latest equipment, research at St. Xavier’s has become an integral part of teaching and learning.
With great modesty, I mention here some of the recent achievements of the College:
- First Autonomous College in West Bengal.
- College with Potential for Excellence and College of Excellence thereafter, awarded by University Grants Commission (UGC).
- College with a Special Heritage Status awarded by UGC.
- A++ College with a CGPA of 3.77 on a scale of 4, awarded by NAAC.
- College with ISO 9001:2015 Certification.
- College securing 7th position NIRF-2020 Ranking.
A significant achievement with regard to extension activities of the College is the setting up of Raghabpur Campus. Raghabpur, about 25 kms away from the main campus. This campus caters primarily to the academic needs of rural students. A new academic block is under construction with a space area of 65,000 square feet. The proposed building has a structure of G+IV Storied College Building. This is in line with the Jesuit motto “Magis” that means “more” or “greater”. It is related to ‘Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam’, a Latin phrase meaning “for the greater glory of God”, the motto of the Society of Jesus. Magis refers to the philosophy of doing more for God, and therefore doing more for others and for society.
The lockdown in March last year briefly brought classes to a halt. But the administration ensured that from April all students received adequate study materials and lectures to prepare for semester examinations. Quite a few teachers resumed class in the online mode with full attendance and participation of students.
To ensure a smooth online teaching-learning process, the college purchased licensed versions of “Microsoft Teams”. A core team of fifteen members comprising faculty and office staff received training from the Vendor. In-house training programs for teachers and office staff were conducted by the Core team.
St. Xavier’s College is the only undergraduate College in India with the responsibility of managing an Educational Multi Media Research Centre (EMMRC) of UGC. Established in 1986, the EMMRC now known as EMRC, is one of the best centres in the country and has won many awards.
St Xavier’s college boasts of an illustrious alumni association comprising of eminent personalities in both academics and industry. The alumni group is very active in many ways and organises meetings on a regular basis to mobilise funds for college welfare, social welfare activities and cultural activities. There are national and international chapters in places like Mumbai, Bangalore, Delhi, Assam, Canada, Bangkok, USA, UK, Singapore, Europe and Australia. The Association organized various philanthropic activities during the pandemic – distribution of PPE kits to giving essentials to under-privileged. They once again came up with “Gift a Roof” programme for the Umpun victims in Rural Bengal.
I am honoured and very proud to serve and lead St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata. It is my obsession for education that has driven me to endeavour for a comprehensive and culturally receptive educational environment where every individual is given adequate support and enthusiasm to achieve his/her objective. However, we are never complacent and we constantly improve ourselves, in order to serve the community with the very best education. I am confident that with the support of the Jesuit community, our students, staff, parents, alumni/ae, well-wishers and benefactors, we will continue to flourish and prosper and serve the society at large.
May God bless us all!
Rev. Dr. Dominic Savio, S.J.