Guwahati, Aug 19 (IANS): Days after the Assam government withdrew the scheme for sending meritorious students on an educational tour to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in the US, a private school in Assam has announced that it will send 20 students, including one meritorious student from the rural area - the latter free of cost.
The Assam government had in 2012 announced the 'Deba Kumar Bora Memorial NASA Visit' enabling 10 meritorious students to go on a 12-day educational visit to NASA. The scheme, which was in force for three years, helped students to interact with NASA scientists and astronauts and understand various aspects of space travel and astronomy.
The government had recently discontinued the scheme saying it had failed to include all the meritorious students of the State. Instead, it announced that students would be taken to institutes like ISRO in Bangalore, JNU, IIT and IIM in New Delhi and other places.
The Guwahati-based NPS International School has, however, decided to send 20 students to NASA in the second week of September. This group is also expected to undergo astronaut training experience at NASA.
"Every year we send students to NASA. This year, we have decided to send a student with rural background, who is among the top five rank holders in the recently declared HSLC examination. The selection criteria will be totally on merit basis," said Jitendra Nath Das, director, NPS International School.
"Our prime objective is to provide international exposure to students of the region. We want to contribute to the betterment of students in the rural areas of the state as well. We will keep on increasing the number of such meritorious Assam students with rural background to NASA in years to come," Das said.
NPS International is the first school from the northeast to send students to NASA. So far, 37 students have visited the US under the scheme.