When one enters the gate of the most popular science colleges in the city, (in fact the most popular since the latest cut-off percentages have always been above 90 per cent) one can hardly imagine the size or beauty of it. The most commonly used gate of D G Ruparel College, the one close to Matunga Road railway station on the Western Railway line, initiates no curiosity or enthusiasm in the person passing through it. It is only after you get inside and explore the buildings (they have identical buildings for Arts and Science, since the commerce faculty was instated much later) does one realise the true size of the campus. And mind you, the buildings are mot tall rises, but broad, sprawling structures with only two or three storeys each.
The college, located on a campus measuring 40,217 square metres, allows for several building spread all over. This gives students an opportunity to take a leisurely or brisk walk from one location to the other, depending on the time and mood. Even on a day when you just want a quick sandwich from the canteen, you have to spare at least 10 minutes since the canteen is located that far from your class! On the upside, while you are engaged in a physics practical at the laboratory located on the ground floor of the Science building, you can look out and soak in the beauty of the lush green patch between the Science and Arts buildings.
Many a time, students prefer to spend a quiet afternoon sitting on the parapet of the ground floor or in between the buildings soaking in the winter sun. It provides a perfect location for girls to discuss their latest beauty buys and for boys to discuss the details of the previous evening’s cricket match. Not only that; students use the space to sit out and get lost in their novels or academic notes, depending on the time of the year. It could literally be that at one minute you are indulging in a hardcore discussion about molecular biology, and at the other minute after a casual glance at the notice board, you are engaged in another serious discussion of a different kind. One about a movie released the previous Friday or the new promos on the block. Or one about which lecture to skip to make it for the new film!
What makes the space even more special is its ability to host any kind of programme or festival that the college students want to host. Students fondly remember the various musical events held in this space and the rendition of classic Hindi duets by the otherwise serious science professors in class. They were in for a surprise when a physicists rendered a song by late singer Mukesh almost flawlessly.
The best part of the campus, as compared to other college campuses, is the sprawling football field that is well maintained and kept green all year round. The sight of practising sportsmen is just the kind of boost the serious students need when taking a break from hardcore sessions of academic prep. The walkway around the football field provides a leisurely walk for students and alumni alike. Many alumni find the need to take a day off work, and make the campus a meeting point to catch up over a plate of hot pakodas and chai. It is not only the memories that whet their appetite for times that have gone by but also the connection they feel with current students on belonging to the same campus.
Few colleges in Mumbai are able to offer so much to their students in terms of campus size. It is this feeling of a large space, and the beauty of the lush green fields that allows the mind to shut out the dilapidated look of the buildings, which the students come to love these buildings in the time they spend there.
•In 2010, the college was re-accredited with the prestigious A Grade by the NAAC.
•In the past two years, three teachers have won the Best Teacher Award conferred by the Government of Maharashtra.
• In 2007-2008, the college won the Best College Award from the University of Mumbai.
Volume 1 Issue 8