Amid Manipal’s dramatic downpours and sweltering sweatiness, a haven of reprieve sits at the heart of the bustling student town. Far removed from the MIT campus’s red zone, the Manipal Centre for Humanities boasts of its seclusion and separation, offering students and faculty the coziness and comfort that only a red-brick roof and an evergreen lawn can provide. Housed among the Manipal Planetarium and the Life Sciences building, MCH encourages the most creative and inspired students to find their passion in the liberal arts. From thought-provoking course material to engaging extracurriculars, MCH is the ideal institute for the curious college kid.
The Manipal Centre for Humanities is about 750 metres from MIT Campus’ Gate 4. The college has six lecture halls, all enjoying multiple windows, whiteboard and projectors, and a leisurely view of the centrally-located lawn. From costume-themed Halloween parties to competitive badminton matches, the lush MCH lawn has seen it all. In addition to the well-ventilated rooms and the occasional air-conditioner, the college houses a library where students frequently borrow books for academic research and pleasure. The college spans two floors, the second floor comprising the Head of Department’s office, the professors’ cabins and the comfortable space for the PhD students to conduct their research in zeal. The campus is home to one of Manipal’s hidden gems; tucked away in a little corner on the second floor is the KK Hebbar Gallery and Art Centre. The gallery often hosts poetry workshops and open mics within its premises.
The students and faculty of Manipal enjoy the WiFi provided by the college, and the students have the full liberty to bring any electronic device of their choice to the lecture halls to aid in the course material. To further benefit the students, benches are littered along the college perimeter, which are put to good use when the students panic ten minutes before the exam and try to cram as much as they can in a dismally short time. Of course, while the effort is futile, the benches are a small comfort while they wallow in their inevitable failure. The students also enjoy the liberty of self-expression and are not confined to a dress code.
The college campus is the proud owner of the Gangubai Hangal auditorium, which after its inauguration in 2014, saw the staging of numerous scintillating theatre productions, continuous talks and presentations from students, faculty and renowned guest speakers alike. The auditorium can hold around 200 people and is often the site of standing ovations and full houses. Apart from these facilities within the college, a quaint pavilion sits opposite the MCH building, which has seen many late-night theatre practices and end-of-year celebrations. The MCH Campus promotes the holistic development of its students and its facilities aid in this growth.
There is nothing more exciting for an MCH student than lunchtime. The college canteen, common to the students of all the colleges in the building, offers a variety of dishes, the assortment of which is fit to feed a king. From a simple omelette to a three-course thali, the canteen offers even the pickiest of eaters the simplest of meals. The canteen aunty’s easy-going charm and quick banter draw the students in, and it isn’t long before they leave with a big smile and a bigger belly.
Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE) has two Centers of Excellence, of which MCH is one. MCH provides postgraduate and doctoral degrees in English, Sociology, and History, as well as an undergraduate program in the Humanities with options for majoring in these subjects. MCH encourages a culture of innovative and reflexive teaching, intellectual freedom, student initiatives, and new scholarly paths which makes it one of the most fascinating academic ventures of higher education in India. The instructors are very competent in their disciplines and well-versed in the subjects they teach.
Academics at MCH is not dreaded by the college students as one would think. The classes are very intellectually stimulating and assignments are spread out over the course of the entire semester in order to avoid unnecessary strain on the students. In fact, MCH does not have sit-down examinations as part of their End Semester exams instead the students have to write research papers based on their areas of interest or the subject they majored in. The Mid-Term examination is the only one of its kind where the students have to give a written examination based on what they have studied in class till the middle of the semester. Understanding and analysis are greatly stressed on, whether it be the Mid-Terms or the assignments being submitted. Plagiarism and unoriginality is greatly frowned upon at MCH. The professors strive to bring out the most creative quality in each student and mould it to perfection by the time they graduate.
There are on-campus Clubs for literary pursuits, movie screenings and discussions, literary journals, theatre, and sports as part of the thriving student life. The Center also hosts guest lectures by eminent academics and creatives, as well as workshops, national and international conferences, writing courses, and summer schools. MCH firmly believes in bringing out the best in every student and assisting them in identifying their route to success on both a personal and professional level. As a part of this venture, it vigorously supports student projects, particularly those that have a positive social and artistic impact, are innovative, and involve teamwork.
Hostels and Campus
Just like the students of MIT, MSAP, DOC and MIC, the students of MCH are offered accommodation in the hostels within the MIT campus. The first-year girls are given accommodation in Blocks 11, 12 and 21, while the boys can take their pick between Blocks 16 and 19. The students are encouraged to join the messes within their blocks or one of the Food Courts, where their prepaid mess card takes care of breakfast, lunch, snacks and dinner. The hostel and mess booking system is commonly done online through the SIS portal, though the caretakers and mess staff will help you out should you run into any trouble once there. Located inside the campus, the students can explore the social hub of Student Plaza or SP (Formerly Kamath Circle), the quiet lull of the basketball court, and the inroads throughout the campus, all while feeling perfectly at home.
For more information regarding the MIT hostels, follow the links below.
Written by Akanksha Banerjee and Agnes Chiramal for MTTN
Photographs by Akanksha Banerjee and @mchcommunity on Instagram