Indian university holds virtual convocation with digital avatars of students

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, many universities across the world have been forced to cancel their convocations or hold virtual ones.

And one of the most prestigious universities in India – the Indian Institute of Technology in Bombay (IIT-B) was forced to do the same.

However, the university wanted to make this occasion special for its students. And what made this convocation different from the rest is that it was attended by digital, personalised avatars of all the students!

So, the 58th annual convocation ceremony of the institute saw its 2,000 students participate from the safety of their homes. Instead, their e-avatars walked up to the stage to collect their degrees from the virtual avatar of the professors and director of the institute, Subhasis Chaudhry.

“The Institute thought it best to arrange such a VR-convocation for the graduating students so as not to put their health at risk but at the same time, not deprive them of the sense of achievement and pride of passing out of India’s premier engineering Institute,” IIT-Bombay said.

Speaking on the occasion, the director said, “Providing a virtual reality experience to all our graduates needed not only highly innovative steps but also a tremendous effort by our professors and staff. They did it for the students. Hopefully this will enthuse our graduates as well as other engineers in the country to think big and think innovatively.”

The Chief guest at the ceremony was Prof. Duncan Haldane, co-recipient of the 2016 Nobel Prize in Physics, and a Professor of Physics at Princeton University while Stephen Schwarzman, Chairman, CEO and Co-Founder of Blackstone, world- renowned investor and philanthropist was the Guest of Honor.

The ceremony was also broadcasted on Doordarshan, the state-owned news channel and was streamed on social media channels.

And it was spectacular, to say in the least. The smiles of the students receiving their certificates was a treat to watch!

Wow! This is really creative! Do you agree?

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