New Delhi, India, 24 January 2007 – The Ministry of Science & Technology, Government of India, and Bentley Systems, Incorporated today announced that the project designed by students of Team 1 at the Apeejay School, Sheikh Sarai, Delhi, has won top honors in the inaugural Future Cities India 2020 competition.
The programme, which was launched last year by the Ministry of Science & Technology and Bentley, is a partnership among government, universities, and the business community. It encourages students to use their design skills—along with Bentley’s software for the world’s infrastructure—to help prepare India’s cities for the year 2020.
The winning student teams received their awards at a ceremony presided over by Hon’ble Minister for Science & Technology & Earth Sciences Shri. Kapil Sibal. “The goal of Future Cities India 2020 is to focus the attention of India’s young minds on the infrastructure requirements of our country and engage them in the development of solutions to real-world problems. In doing so, we hope to nurture budding talent in our great nation, while inspiring the creation of infrastructure to help us sustain our vigorous economic growth,” said the Minister.
The Minister announced the winning team and said, “In recognition of their imaginative design and superior work, I am delighted to present the first Future Cities India 2020 top award to the student team from Team 1, Apeejay School, Sheikh Sarai. Second-place honors go to the team from Team 1, Apeejay School, Saket.”
Commenting on the team’s win and his experiences during the six-month competition, Ish Goel, Team Leader, Team 1, Apeejay School, Sheikh Sarai, said, “Future Cities India 2020 has given us a great opportunity to serve our nation, our India. The initiative taken by the Ministry of Science and Technology and Bentley is absolutely fabulous as it gives us the required practical exposure that makes us different from others. The competition helped bring out our innovative ideas.
“To tackle a real-life problem was not easy,” he continued. “But under the guidance of learned people from Bentley and all our beloved teachers, we were able to complete our project successfully. Apart from technical knowledge, this project has taught us teamwork and dedication. Working with world-class software like MXROAD and MicroStation was a tremendous experience. We have already started feeling like engineers and architects.”
Fifteen student teams representing eight high schools participated in the competition. Their challenge was to design a roadway between the Lakshmi Nagar and Noida Turning rail stations capable of accommodating the extremely heavy traffic expected during the Commonwealth Games 2010. The students were guided by teachers and industry mentors, and all of the projects were designed using advanced software provided by Bentley. The students’ project presentations were judged by a panel of distinguished experts from the infrastructure community.
The student team from Apeejay School, Sheikh Sarai, will take its winning project to the next level of the competition for validation and refinement by college teams. These college teams will develop more detailed simulated models of the winning solution, which also will be judged.
Dr. T. Ramasamy, Secretary, Department of Science & Technology (DST), congratulated the winning team and appreciated the efforts of all participating students. “It is one of the most innovative schemes that the DST has introduced to capture the outside-the-box ideas of the young for the benefit of society,” said Dr. Ramasamy.
Dr. R. Siva Kumar, Head, Natural Resources Data Management Systems (NRDMS), a Division of DST, which is the sponsor of the programme in India, said, “The selection of right technologies, right people, and the commitment to address a common cause are the needs of the hour. In this competition, young students were provided with the appropriate tools and the freedom to experiment. The results are beyond our expectations.”
Said Bhupinder Singh, Managing Director, Bentley South Asia, “We are delighted by the results of the pilot programme in Delhi, including the enthusiastic response of the students and the quality of their projects. The pilot programme’s success means we and the Ministry of Science & Technology can go forward with our plan to turn Future Cities India 2020 into a national competition.
“Through this programme we hope to engage the minds of thousands of students across India and apply their creative imaginations to the vast infrastructure challenges India faces. In addition, the competition will help foster a wider interest among the young people of India in engineering professions. India’s economy requires many more engineers to sustain its tremendous growth, and we believe Future Cities India 2020 is an important step in addressing this need.”
Added Scott Lofgren, Global Director of Bentley’s BE (Bentley Empowered) Careers programme, “India isn’t alone in its need for more engineering graduates. The entire world faces a critical shortage of engineering resources.”
He continued, “Future Cities India 2020 is an extension of Bentley’s broader commitment to expose students around the world to programmes that involve math, science, engineering, and design. The goals of these programmes, and other initiatives supported by the BE Careers Network, include encouraging students to pursue careers in engineering and helping those that do choose this course of study to graduate with market-ready technology skills.”
Future Cities India 2020 was inspired by the U.S.-based National Engineers Week Future City Competition, which is now in its 15th year and reaches more than 30,000 students annually. Bentley sponsors the Future City Competition and also serves as chair of its Leadership Council. The winning Future Cities India 2020 team will receive an all-expense-paid trip to this year’s Future City Competition finals in Washington, D.C.