- Hostels are completely constucted now. Hostels are clean and new. All the furniture and plumbing is branded (the best brand dude-ESS ESS and godrej).
- All academic blocks are functional. So we have 4 academic blocks- Aerospace block, Avionics block, Science block and Interdisciplinary block. We have several labs. Each specialisation has a lab. Our director has come up with new ideas such as smart classrooms so that we can record lectures or seminars.
- A fantastic 6 storeyed library, lavish and novel.
- 2 Messes and 1 cafeteria.
- It is located in a far away village- Valiamala, so, you do not have supermarkets or big shops nearby but the new cafeteria suffices our needs. There are paratha shops nearby.
- We are neighbors to LPSC. Hence, there are many projects of LPSC that are being done by IIST.
- Sports facilities are still hustling. We have 1 basketball court, 1 volleyball court, a cricket/football field nearby, cricket nets, billiard table and a gym.
- A Student Activity Centre (SAC) is under construction and is supposed to have a badminton court and stuff (I don’t exactly know).
Life at IIST:
Nothing exciting. You have beautiful Kerala scenery everywhere. Except that it’s quite low. Trivandrum is almost and hour from the college and the city too is a boring and slow place.
But we are a small community. So, we are close knit. We know each other well and our faculties understand us well, though not always.
Medical facility is right now not quite good. Bed bugs is a rising issue in the hostels. The authorities are working on it.
Food is just fine. You can adjust to it and there a couple of alternatives sich as cafeteria and paratha shop.
This part is the best part of our college. I am fortunate to have a good batch of seniors. They are always helpful and encouraging.
I should say it’s better than IITs. The reason is the 7.5 criterion. The rule is that- you get a scholarship by Department of Space, GOI, i.e., you do not have to pay any fees for your semester (no fee for academics, mess, hostel, etc). Plus you get a book grant worth ₹3000 to putchase books. But the condition is that you have to score above 7.5 GPA in the semester. Otherwise you have to pay for all these things (which is only ₹48,000) for the semester. Now, this encourages you to study. It acts like a motivation. In some cases it’s brutal but most of the times I see it as a challenge (7.5 is not really difficult but not that easy too).
Plus our classes and exams are properly scheduled and on time. IITs have a wierd time table that I don’t understand.
We have seminars and lectures by big shots like director of DRDO, chairman of ISRO, mission heads of NASA missions and so on. You get to learn many new things in them.
Clubs- As any other college we have a movie club, social club, etc. But main attractions are the Astronomy club and Aero club.
Placement- Till now it was 100% placement but from last couple of years, placement jas also become like 7.5 criterion, if you score above 7.5 you’re in, if not, you are kicked out- jobless. You need to find your ways then, either study further or get some job.
There are several problems in the college one being the dominance of administration over academics. But things work just fine.
Finally, if you are living in North India for your whole life, you should come and live in South India for some time. You learn how to deal with people in local shops who don’t understand what you say, you learn how to manage your life in a completely different place. You can learn Malayalam, which is again a challenging business.