IIT Madras Zanzibar campus was inaugurated on 6 November 2023 by Dr. Hussein Ali Mwinyi, President of Zanzibar and Chairman of the Revolutionary Council.
This historic initiative is being undertaken as part of the Government of India’s endeavour to take top quality education system of India to international arenas.
IIT Madras Zanzibar is the first ever international campus of an IIT. The existing campus in Bweleo district, located approximately 15 km south of Zanzibar Town, is equipped with international amenities designed to meet the current needs of students, say sources from IIT Madras.
A permanent campus will be built soon jointly by the Government of Zanzibar and the Government of India, say sources from IIT Madras.
While initially, the Institute will offer BS and MTech programs, in Data Science and Artificial Intelligence, more academic programs will be offered in the coming year.
In the first batch at IIT Madras Zanzibar, students from Zanzibar, mainland Tanzania, Nepal and India have been admitted with 40 per cent of the students being women.
The campus will have the ability to accommodate students in dorms and provide various facilities. Arrangements for offices, classrooms and auditoriums have been meticulously made, say sources from IIT Madras.
Dining facilities and a dispensary are available on campus, and sports facilities are being planned, say sources from IIT Madras.
The campus was inaugurated in the presence of Hon. Prof. Adolf F. Mkenda, Minister of Education Science and Technology United Republic of Tanzania, Hon. Binaya Srikanta Pradhan, India High Commissioner of The United Republic of Tanzania.
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Also present were Lela Mohamed Mussa, Minister of Education and Vocational Training-Zanzibar, Prof. M S Ananth and Prof. Bhaskar Ramamurthi, former Directors of IIT Madras, Prof. Preeti Aghalayam, Dean of School of Engineering and Science, and Director-in-charge, Zanzibar campus, IIT Madras, faculty, students, staff and others.
The programs at IIT Madras Zanzibar are open to students of all nationalities, including Indians.
Apart from a comprehensive curriculum that includes all aspects of Data Science and Artificial Intelligence, students will have access to several interesting opportunities during their course of study, say sources from IIT Madras.
These include study abroad/semester exchange programs with IIT Madras’ partner institutions in the U.K. and Australia, among other countries, internships with various relevant companies and a chance to meet some of the course requirements at the IIT Madras campus in Chennai, India.
Classes for the first Academic Year (2023-24) commenced in October 2023, say sources from IIT Madras.
Speaking to the Media at the IIT Madras Chennai Campus, Prof. V. Kamakoti, Director, IITM, said, “Today, as we inaugurate the IITM Zanzibar Campus, we embark on a journey of knowledge and innovation that transcends borders.
Together, we will nurture excellence, foster collaboration and inspire generations to dream beyond horizons, he said.
The campus has started in its first semester with students from different countries including Zanzibar, India, Nepal and Tanzania Mainland, say sources from IIT Madras.
A total of 45 students have been admitted for a four-year Bachelor of Science degree in Data Science and AI and a two-year Master of Technology degree in Data Science and AI.
Highlighting the unique aspects of the campus while addressing the event at Zanzibar Campus, Prof. Preeti Aghalayam, Dean of School of Engineering and Science and Director-in-charge, Zanzibar campus, IITM, said, “It has been an honour to bring IITM’s academic excellence to this beautiful island of Zanzibar.
We have started on such a wonderful and positive note with a lovely campus and amazing students. We are grateful to President Mwinyi for the faith reposed in us, and look forward to scaling great heights at IITM Zanzibar, she said.
The NEP 2020 encourages opportunities for the expansion of Indian higher education outside the country.
The Ministry of Education, Government of India, received strong interest and excitement from the corresponding Ministry in the Government of Tanzania.
After several delegation visits on both sides, the partnership was found to be ideal and the first international campus of an IIT is now ready to launch in Zanzibar-Tanzania.
The Office of Global Engagement, IITM, coordinated the student entrance process, which included a screening test developed by faculty experts at IIT Madras and an interview, as per the IITM Senate-approved admission process for international programs.
The Zanzibar campus will leverage the wide expertise of IITM faculty in interdisciplinary education, research and technological innovation, and is on an accelerated plan of development and growth.
With strong support from the local government, IITM Zanzibar is planned as a one-of-a-kind international campus.