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Star College Mentorship Program: First-ever Mentorship Program for Young Innovators

Star College Mentorship Program- Relevance for UPSC Exam

  • GS Paper 2: Governance, Administration and Challenges- Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.
  • GS Paper 3: Science and Technology- Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, robotics, nano-technology, bio-technology and issues relating to intellectual property rights.

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Star College Mentorship Program- Context

  • Recently, the Union Minister of State for Science & Technology launched the first-ever Mentorship Programme for Young Innovators to mark the 75th Year of India’s independence.

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Star College Mentorship Program- Key Points

  • About: Star College Mentorship Program is a pan India Scheme that envisages Star College in every district of the country supported by the Department of Biotechnology.
    • DBT-Star College Mentorship Programme will help towards the concept of networking, hand-holding and outreach.
  • Parent Ministry: Star College Mentorship Program is under the Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science and Technology.
  • Key Objective: to promote scientific temper among the masses, particularly youngsters, by strengthening scientific research and innovation efforts in the country.

DRDO Dare to Dream 2021 and Young Scientists awards


Star College Mentorship Program- Key Features

  • Star College Mentorship Program envisages-
    • Organizing workshops, meetings per month;
    • Handhold at colleges particularly in the rural areas or lesser endowed areas and
    • Conduct outreach activities with government schools.
  • Categorization of the scheme into urban and rural categories: This has ensured a level playing field for applicants hailing from rural and urban areas of the country.

National Institute of Mental Health & Neuro Sciences (NIMHANS)


DBT Star College Mentorship Program- Expected Benefits

  • Star College Mentorship Program will enable newer colleges that have begun their journey under the scheme to come up as per the mandate of the scheme.
  • Promote Science Courses in the Country: The Star Status Colleges will help in promoting UG Science Courses throughout the country.
    • This is to be done by mentoring the newer colleges through hand-holding and peer learning and bringing them under the aegis of the Star College Scheme.

Collegium System for the Appointment of Judges


DBT Star College Scheme- Key Points

  • About: The Star College Scheme was initiated by DBT in 2008 to support colleges and universities offering undergraduate education to improve science teaching across the country.
  • Mandate: This Scheme was launched for improving critical thinking and encourage ‘hands-on’ experimental science at the undergraduate level in basic science subjects.
  • Key Features: The scheme was initiated envisioning that it shall encourage more students to take up higher education in science.
    • Through this scheme, the Department identifies colleges with potential for excellence and provides support for developing infrastructure for academics and laboratory activities.
    • This support is in turn expected to invigorate teaching and provide unique exposure of students to experimental science.
    • The scheme also supports the training of faculty and laboratory staff, lectures by eminent scientists, visits to research institutes and industry, etc.
  • Performance: Starting with a meagre 30 colleges in 2008, this pan India scheme has supported science departments in more than 300 colleges all over the country to date.
    • More than 1.5 lakh students were supported in the last five years and
    • Comprehensive support is also provided to colleges participating in the Star College Scheme.


Other Human Resource-related Schemes

  • Star College Scheme,
  • Skill Vigyan Programme (Skill Development Programme) in Biotechnology,
  • Biotech Industrial Training Programme and
  • Doctoral & post-doctoral and Re-entry Schemes & Fellowships

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