INnovation in Science Persuit for Inspired REsearch (INSPIRE) Award Scheme









Government of India, Ministry of Science and Technology, Department of Science and Technology has launched recently an innovative Award / Scholarship program viz., INSPIRE for the students studying across India. All Schools in the country, whether Government or Private, Aided or Un-aided, run by Central Government or State Government or Local Bodies and having classes 6th to 10th are eligible to participate in this INSPIRE Award / Scholarship Program. INSPIRE Award / Scholarship Program plans to cover 100% of Schools in the country under this Award Scheme before 31st March 2012. As on 31/12/2010, around 302711 students were awarded with INSPIRE Award / Scholarship Program. Let us see some of the Salient features of this INSPIRE Award / Scholarship Program, in this article.

Salient features of INSPIRE Award / Scholarship Program:

· Innovation in Science Pursuit for Inspired Research or INSPIRE is a National Program implemented by the Department of Science and Technology, Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of India for attraction of talent amongst students to study Science and pursue career with Research;

· INSPIRE Award / Scholarship Program has three components:
[a] Scheme for Early Attraction of Talents for Science or SEATS, providing [I] INSPIRE Awards of Rs.5000/- and [ii] mentorship through global Science leaders at a Science Camp;
[b] Scholarship for Higher Education or SHE @ Rs.80.000/- per year for continuing education at B.Sc. and M.Sc. levels; and
[c] Assured Opportunity for Research Careers or AORC for young researchers to pursue Doctorate Research in Science backed by an assured career opportunity.

· Under the INSPIRE Award / Scholarship Program, during the 11th Plan period ending March 2012, TWO students would be selected from each school of the country for a INSPIRE Award / Scholarship Program of Rs.5000/- each for preparing a Science Project / Model. INSPIRE Award / Scholarship Program warrant would be issued directly in the name of the selected student and sent to him through State / School authorities.

· All INSPIRE Awardees / Scholarship holders will be required to participate in the District Level Exhibition. Best 5 to 10% entries from the District will be selected for participation in a State Level Exhibition. Best 5% entries from the State, subject to a minimum of 5, would be invited to participate at the National Level Exhibition. A jury of experts would evaluate the projects exhibited. Commendation Certificates would be issued to selected INSPIRE Awardees / Scholarship holders of District / State / National Level Exhibitions and the teachers who guided them for the preparation of projects. The entire cost of organizing exhibitions at District and State level will be borne by the Department of Science and Technology or DST;

· Merit based selection of the students for INSPIRE Award / Scholarship Program is done by the Head Master / Head Mistress / Principal of each school, who is required to send nomination of best children, having aptitude for preparing Science Projects, with all relevant details, to the District Education Authorities, who will, in turn, compile details of all the Schools in their jurisdiction in the prescribed format and send the proposal to Department of Science and Technology or DST through the State Education Authorities, giving also the criteria employed by the School[s] for nomination and selection; and

· The proposals need to be sent to the Department of Science and Technology or DST through the State Education Authorities only, along with a soft copy, in the prescribed format in accordance with the detailed guidelines, copy of which is available on Website of Department of Science and Technology. Students / Schools / District Authorities should not send the proposals directly to Department of Science and Technology or DST.