An MoU was signed between Department of Science and Technology (DST) and India Trade Promotion Organisation (ITPO) today for the conduct of 2nd National level Exhibition and Project Competitions (NLEPC) under the Innovation in Science Pursuit for the Inspired Research (INSPIRE) Award Scheme. The signing was done by Dr. T. Ramasami, Secretary, DST and Ms Rita Menon, Chairperson and Managing Director, ITPO in the presence of Shri Vayalar Ravi, Union Minister of Science & Technology and Earth Sciences.
The NLEPC is being organized by DST at ITPO, Pragati Maidan, New Delhi during October 21-23, 2012.
INSPIRE, a National programme implemented by the Ministry of Science & Technology for attraction of talent amongst students to study science and pursue career with research, was launched by the Hon’ble Prime Minister on 13th December 2008. Since then, the programme has progressed extremely well, touching more than seven lakh students across the country.
INSPIRE Programme has three components:-
(a) Scheme for early attraction of talents for Science (SEATs), which has two sub-components (i) INSPIRE Award of `5000/- and (ii) Mentorship through global Science leaders at a science camp;
(b) Scholarship for Higher Education (SHE) at the rate of `80,000/- for continuing education at B.Sc and M.Sc levels and
(c) Assured Opportunity for Researach Career (AORC) for young researches which also has two sub-components (i) INSPIRE Fellowship and (ii) INSPIRE Faculty.
Hence, the INSPIRE programme has 5 sub-schemes/components.
Nearly 6.5 lakh INSPIRE Awards have been sanctioned till date. Under the INSPIRE Internship, as on date about 500 Science Camps have been held covering about 1.20 lakh students in the age group of 16-18 years, 30 Nobel Laureates and 3500 resource persons participated in these camps. About 15000 scholarships for students in the age group of 17-22 years have been given and about 1850 INSPIRE Fellows in the age group of 22 -27 years have been enrolled so far. Finally, under the Faculty Award for Assured Career under the age of 32, seventy four individuals have been awarded and 101 selected for inspire faculty fellowship, as on date.
Under the INSPIRE Award component programme, about 6.5 lakh awards have been sanctioned till date. Under this scheme, 2 students are eligible from each school of the country during the Five Year Plan period for an INSPIFRE Award of `5000/- each for preparing a science project/model. These awardees who are students from classes 6th to 10th, then participate in a three tier competition: District, State and National Level.
The 1st NLEPC was organized during August 14-16, 2011 in which 688 students from various States and UTs of the country participated. This time about 1000 children from 35 States/UTs are expected to participate.