In a significant boost, The Franco-Indian Education Trust received donation of Rs. 25 lakh from well-known entrepreneur Dr Gun Nidhi Dalmia. The donation was handed over by Dr Dalmia to the Ambassador of France to India, H.E. Mr Alexandre Ziegler. Entrepreneur-philanthropist Prshant K Lahoti was also present at the event.
Dr Dalmia’s donation will be used to set up a special scholarship under the Trust and be named after his deceased daughter, Amba Dalmia. The scholarship will be awarded to Indian women applicants pursuing their studies in music, theatre, sports, arts, cinema, ballet, opera, philosophy, painting or photography in France. The first batch is expected to join in the upcoming academic year in France, in September-October 2018.
French Ambassador to India, Alexandre Ziegler, welcoming Dr Dalmia’s contribution, said, “Dr Dalmia’s valued contribution is the very first the Trust has received from a private donor and is earmarked for scholarships in fields of excellence that receive lesser funding. I deeply appreciate his sponsorship, which, I am sure, will inspire others to support the Trust’s efforts to enhance academic and expert’s mobility between France and India. During his recent State visit, President Emmanuel Macron had reiterated France’s aim of having at least 10,000 Indian students pursuing their higher education in France’s globally renowned institutions by 2020.”
Dr Gun Nidhi Dalmia said, “France has much to offer and should be a major student destination for Indians, who need not look only at Anglophone countries. I hope this donation will enable many Indian students to go to France, and their example encourages others to follow suit. It has been a cherished desire of mine since the days I myself was a student at the Sorbonne many years ago to see more Indian students choose France. ”
Commending the sponsorship, Founder-Trustee, Prshant Lahoti, said, “I am delighted that the Amba Dalmia Scholarship will be instituted under The Franco-Indian Education Trust, which is working to boost exchanges in this field. Helping Indian students aspiring to study in France’s excellent institutions has long been close to my heart. Through student scholarships and support of exchanges of professors and researchers, the Trust will create ambassadors who will strengthen ties between both countries.”
About The Franco-Indian Education Trust
The Franco-Indian Education Trust was established on 31st August 2017, this not-for-profit organization based in Hyderabad. It endeavours to increase student and expert exchanges between India and France. Offering top quality education and scientific facilities at reasonable fees, France ranks third globally among countries welcoming the highest number of foreign students, yet has only 5,000 students from India. The French government currently invests 1 million euros (7 crores rupees) in over 500 scholarships per year in India. The Trust aims at doubling the number of scholarships that France gives every year to Indian students.
The Trust is charging no administrative costs to ensure that the full benefit of donations go to the scholarship awardees, who will be selected through calls for projects. The selection process will be conducted by the Institut Français India (the French Embassy’s cultural and cooperation wing) based on academic excellence, as well as the coherence and quality of the projects. The final candidates will be selected by the managing committee of the Trust. Candidates’ knowledge of French would be an asset but is not mandatory.
Courses offered at the trust
The Franco-Indian Education Trust is offering four other types of programmes apart from the Amba Dalmia scholarship: Masters; PhD; internship; and short-term programmes (2-3 weeks) for scientists and young professionals.
Author: Sitaram Mewati
Award winning journalist