Bell Tower at The American College, Madurai


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Added On : Oct 26, 2012

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The American College, often referred to as American College, is one of the oldest colleges present in India. It is located in Madurai, Tamil Nadu state, south of India. It was founded in 1881 by American Christian missionaries. The college is situated in Madurai, Tamil Nadu. The red-brick buildings, in the Saracenic style of architecture, blend with the natural surroundings constructed by British architect Henry Irwin. The college was visited by many eminent people including Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore who delivered a series of lectures on education in 1919. The object of the college is to give the students a liberal Christian education, to train them in the service of God and people and to do such other things as are in harmony with that object. The continuing vision and vibrancy of the college flow naturally from the commitment to this original object. The holistic education that this vision implies enables the development of the body, mind and spirit of the student. The college maintains a desirably low faculty-student ratio. A major innovation underway is the choice-based credit system (CBCS). It is hoped that this will make education student-centered. The American College is one of the institutions in higher education known for its focus on academic excellence and social relevance. Its pioneering role in the development of College autonomy in India, its successful beginning of a Choice Based Credit System and its completion of 125 years of higher education bear testimony to the position that the college currently enjoys. Originally founded as a missionary in 1841 by the American Mission, The American College flowed into a collegiate department in 1881.In 1931 it became independent of the mission. Originally affiliated to the University of Madras, The American College is presently under the jurisdiction of Madurai Kamaraj University. With its extreme sensitivity to national policies and community needs, the college have grown from strength to strength. It was one of the first set of seven colleges to be made autonomous by the UGC in 1977-1978.Today the college offers eighteen undergraduate and thirteen post-graduate Programmes. There are research centres offering M.Phil., and Ph.D Programmes in various disciplines . There are other autonomous centres like Department of Applied Sciences (DAS) and Study Centre for Indian Literature in English and Translation (SCILET) receiving national and international attention. Its alumni form part of the national and international elite as scientists, intellectuals, administrators, corporate managers, ministers, leaders etc., The post-graduate Department of Social Work was added to this great tradition in the year 1998-99.The College has active theatre groups, Social Service Schemes and N.C.C. units that offer students a wide variety of opportunities to serve society. These activities add up to make the campus a vibrant space for developing one’s personality.

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