Snapshots from MIT

My undergraduate experiences at Madras Institute of Technology, 1996-2000

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

A livewire called Prof.KVN

Anybody who came in contact with MIT, during the years a dimunitive professor called KV Narayanan worked there, could not forget him till the end of their lives. Such was the arresting dynamism KVN radiated throughout his career.

We came into contact with him even during our first year, but that was mostly along the fringes. It was only when he came to handle the course Analog Electronics in our third semester that we had first hand knowledge of him.

As an expert in taking notes in the class, I can state with reasonable authority that taking notes in his classes proved my ultimate challenge. He would very frequently slip into narrating an anecdote involving some alumnus in the midst of a lecture on Electronics, and I would be so into the story that I would miss when he went back into the subject and when he says, "Let us move to the next topic", I would be puzzled as to when and whether he completed the previous topic. However he did not trouble us too much in our exams, as they were mostly straight forward.

His efforts as the professor incharge of Placements at MIT are so legendary.

His thoughts were always about the welfare of students. In the beginning of the second year, when we had a very damaging incident at the college, I had seen personally as to how much he tried to take care of the students. He was truly one of the most sincere and most humane professors who ever walked the surface of earth.

It is a matter of utmost personal honour for me that in the year 2000, a Gold Medal for the most outstanding outgoing student was instituted by a 46th batch Instrumentation alumnus in Prof. KVN's name, and I won it in that year. It was doubly satisfactory to me because I was on a company tour after graduation when the award was given during the Alumni Club celebrations, and my father received it on my behalf. That was a very special moment for me.

Prof.KVN remains one of my most favourite teachers.

(Posted on 16-Jan-2005)