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GOVERNMENT ARTS COLLEGE

(AUTONOMOUS)

KUMBAKONAM - 612002

Accredited by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council with Grade "A"
Tamil Nadu Government Under Taken

HISTORY OF THE COLLEGE

Government Arts College has a lush campus with gardens and campus pond. The edifice virtually stands on the river Cauveri. The campus and buildings are having ancient and modern architectural features. The faculties of various departments are actively engaged in research and in developing innovative teaching methods. This College was formerly named as Government Arts College.

Then it was changed as Men College as a Women College was started in Kumbakonam.Considering the need for providing to women in higher education on an equal footing, the State Government declared it as a coeducational institution and renamed it as Government College in 1996.In 1987 it was granted the autonomous status and since then it is known as Government College (Autonomous).

The detailed profile of the college is presented in the annexure.The location significance of this college is singularly felt as is is drawing learners from the adjacent constituencies, where rural, semi-rural and suburban feeder institutions of higher secondary learning abound. Its presence is so academic that is transmits the academic compulsions over to the feeder schools giving them the ideal scope to aim it.

  • History

 

     Kumbakonam, an ancient South Indian city in the Cauveri basin, was the cradle of Tamil civilization.  Right from early centuries of the Christian era, this little city epitomized the traditions of urban Tamil culture in a big way through its mythic sanctity, heritage fostering populace, its temples and tanks, its palaces and its institutions scholastic and philanthropic.

 

     The Government College (Autonomous) known as The Cambridge of South India is one among the oldest Indian Educational Institutions since nineteenth century.  It was started in the year 1854.  Situated on the banks of Cauveri as Cambridge on Cam, it has produced eminent scholars and professionals of no mean stature. 

 

     The great mathematician Ramanujan, Rt. Hon. V. S. Srinivasa Sastry, the silver tongued orator, Tamil savant Thiyagaraja Chettiar and his successor to the Tamil Chair Dr. U. V. Saminatha Iyer, Principals Bilderbeck, Gopal Rao and a long line of them are ever in the niches of this college’s memory.

 

     In the year 2004, the college turned one hundred and fifty.  An attempt to outline the history of the college is itself a research undertaking.

 
  • Important milestones are recorded hereunder
 
  • This college was started as a Provincial School in October 1854 even before the establishment of the Madras University.  Thus it claims to be a hoary precursor of university education in TamilNadu.

  • In 1864 it was raised to the status of second Grade College with the affiliated subjects Mathematics, History and Philosophy.  At that time, there were only four colleges in South India.

  • In 1867 the BA classes were started.

  • In 1885 instruction was offered in all new arts curriculum (except biology) and BA courses in Physical Sciences, Mathematics, Logic History and Sanskrit.

  • In 1871 construction of new buildings were started.

  • In 1875 the existing building with bell tower was completed.

  • In 1954 college  celebrated its 100th year and the UGC sanctioned Rs 1 lakh to this college.

  • In 1966 it was upgraded into a postgraduate institution with  M. Sc Mathematics and MA Economics.

  • In 1972 B.Com course was started.

 
  • Following table relates to the starting of post graduate programmes
 
Year
Course
 
1972
MA Tamil
 
1979
MA English
 
1982
M.Sc Chemistry
 
1984
M.Sc Physics
 
1987
M.Sc Zoology
 
 
  • In 1987 the college become Autonomous.

  • In 1994 M.Sc Geography was started.

  • In 1998 MCA was started and  the department of Tamil, English, Physics and Chemistry were elevated to the status of Research Departments started offering M Phil and PhD programs.

  • In the year 2000-01 the departments of Zoology, Geography and Mathematics were elevated as research Departments offering M Phil and PhD programs.

  • In 2003 M Sc Biochemistry, Operational Research, Computer Science, MA and M Com courses were started  along with B.B.A and Pulavar Pattayam.

 
  • New initiatives and future plan of action
 

     The college is updating the syllabus periodically, at the UG and PG levels to meet the national and international standards.  It has already started a vocational course on Indian Culture and Tourism.  Choice based system has been introduced in the year 2005-06 at both UG and PG levels, and the need based and job oriented courses are now being offered as Extra Disciplinary papers.

 

     All the Departments have facilities and are taking initiatives in intensifying the research activities for the betterment of the human race concurrently upholding human values.  For example the Zoology department to demonstrate new aquaculture lab-to-land program.  Intensive research is also done in developing eco-friendly bio remedial microbial agents for pollution monitoring.

 
  • Suggested approach
 
     This college plans to achieve excellence in teaching and also to initiate a culture of research.  Development of innovative curriculum in the undergraduate program, using modern methods of learning and evaluation, and to introduce a flexible approach in selection of courses at the degree level and to guide the students to pursue self employment are  underway.  It also plans to act as a role model for other institutions in aspects like methods of operation, new and improved approaches to teaching, learning and evaluation, organization and management, healthy practices for academic excellence and an effective system of governance.  The present proposal is to establish the approaches and methodologies to initiate an operative excellence in teaching and research and also reforms for effective governance.
 
  • Profile of the college
 
     The college has a lush campus with gardens and campus pond.  The edifice virtually stands on the river Cauveri. The campus and buildings have ancient and modern architectural features.  The faculties of various departments are actively engaged in research and in developing innovative teaching methods.  This College was formerly named as Government Arts College.  Then it was changed as Men College as a Women College was started in Kumbakonam.  Considering the need for providing to women in higher education on an equal footing, the State Government declared it as a coeducational institution and renamed it as Government College in 1996.  In 1987 it was granted the autonomous status and since then it is known as Government College (Autonomous).  The detailed profile of the college is presented in the annexure.

 

     The location significance of this college is singularly felt as it is drawing learners from the adjacent constituencies, where rural, semi-rural and suburban feeder institutions of higher secondary learning abound.  Its presence is so academic that it transmits the academic compulsions over to the feeder schools giving them the ideal scope to aim at.

 

     The library of this college has a unique collection of 1, 85,000 vols to boast, which nevertheless is fairly ancient; with a Sanskrit and Hindi ‘detachment’, presently in utility for the language departments of Tamil and English.  In the clammy delta climate the maintenance is a challenge to be met with due assistance from funding bodies.

 

     The celebrities of this college are no bygones.  The spirit of the place is ever active.  It is to be noted that this institution turning 150 must be duly attended at par with university of its stature.

 

     The current academic enterprises involve creative, comparative, inventive translational and research works in Humanities and Sciences as indicated department wise

 
English and Tamil

Sahithya Akademi translation work; critical publications in literature and language; provisions for performing-art course with the literature departments

Chemistry Phytochemical pharmalogical studies; researches in flavone chemistry
Economics Delta related overtures in research pertaining to the agro economy of Cauveri basin
Zoology

Lab-to-land programmers in aquaculture. Environmental monitoring, bioremediation process strategy developments

Geography Equip mental research to develop remote sensing
Physics and Mathematics Studies relating to ionosphere, operational research.
 
     Until the closure of 1970’s, the college had a boat club and annual regatta as a sports feature.  For reasons like monsoon failure and want of pond maintenance for pre-regatta training and the like, the club was disbanded and the event suspended.  Now with prospective planning, it is noted we would soon able to revive the club, a unique sports feature of this place and promote the riverside studies, given the necessary assistance.
 
  • Existing potentials aspiring to excellence
 
    1. About 260 feeder institutions to give the learner strength to the College on varied disciplines from the three constituencies to which the College is location ally speaking, a gang ionic centre.
    2. A library housing some ancient books, unique in their kind, not available in reprint, also possessing gazetteers of the districts with valid  information for future use by all departments.
    3. Pond as water reserve and Cauveri as a prospective waterway foe conducting riverside researches of Zoology, Botany and Chemistry departments.
    4. Temples & Mutts to assist scholastic learning programmes in humanities and philosophy and literature departments.
    5. About 18 major disciplines of UG and PG with syllabi abreast of our times and expertise to realize the objectives thereof.
    6. Viability of inter-university exchange programmes now sighted, consequent on the realization of a deemed university nearby.
    7. Research aspirants on the increase with the existing research facilities likely to be improved on a need-base for further research with the support of UGC funding.
    8. Fairly updated lab facilities for all science departments envisage future equipments to meet with standards academically used for.
    9. Younger institutions in delta acquired their dues.  This senior premier college must therefore be duly regarded and assisted in full, meet with its well-known ness.  The potentiality is that the Tanjore delta has been fostering this college for 15 decades, preserving the modern disposition with the hope of receiving recognition and university status and adequate funding for it.