May 4, 2011
Amritapuri and Coimbatore Campuses
While growing up at the Amritapuri ashram since the age of 12, Linkesh Diwan learned about the environment by cleaning the grounds, participating in gardening, and listening to the ecological wisdom of Chancellor Amma and his mother.
During his undergraduate career at Amrita, Linkesh came to know many of the environmental dangers facing the planet such as pollution, toxicity and increasing background radiation.
Learning to maintain a clean environment at Amritapuri, and paying close attention to Amma’s divine insights about the earth, helped the student discover his immense love for the planet and nurtured a sense of duty towards serving it.
After earning a B.Tech. degree in mechanical engineering in August 2010, Linkesh decided to expand and strengthen his knowledge of and ability to improve the world by pursuing a master’s degree in environmental engineering.
He was accepted into five graduate schools and two Erasmus Mundus programs, and eventually received a full academic scholarship to attend the Environomical Pathways for Sustainable Energy Technology master’s program at KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, Sweden. Linkesh was delighted when the official letter of acceptance arrived in his mailbox.
“I’m excited to go to Sweden,” he said. “It will be quite a change for me. This opportunity is a real blessing for me, and I pray that I’ll be able to live up to the responsibility that the blessing comes with.”
Linkesh’s two-year Erasmus Mundus scholarship will cover his airfare to Sweden, academic and living expenses, and allow him to study at KTH for one year starting next August, and spend the second year at another European university. He will ultimately receive a degree from two universities.
“When I was applying to different universities, I was really looking for a program that would bring in the social, environmental and technological aspects,” shared Linkesh.
“The KTH program in particular, is heavy on the technology side but I want to bring in a social aspect as well.”
At Amrita, Linkesh picked up valuable experiential knowledge by working on various green projects like the assembly of a solar-powered auto rickshaw and a wind electric generator. The rickshaw is currently in a running state, and will be upgraded to an actual working prototype to facilitate ashram garbage disposal and serve other purposes.
His final project, titled Stand-Alone Micro Wind Electric Generator, was erected in front of the Amritapuri juice stall for testing before being passed on to juniors for improvement.
Linkesh is enrolling at KTH at a time when the European university and Amrita are working together to further the cause of higher education and research.
A contingent of educators from the KTH School of Electrical Engineering visited Amrita’s Coimbatore campus during April 18-21 to meet with senior Amrita academicians.
Prof. Stefan Ostlund, Dean of School of EE; Prof. Rajeev Thottappillil, KTH International Advisory Group; Ms. Cecilia Forssman, Coordinator, Master’s Education at EE and Dr. Robert Lagerstrom, KTH Project Manager for the DST-VINNOVA project, jointly implemented by the two universities met with Amrita faculty and students of the EEE, ECE and CSE departments.
During these meetings, both universities identified more areas of cooperation, exchanged research plans, made agreements on student exchanges in PG programs and signed a memorandum of understanding.