Nirmala Niketan College of Polytechnic

By Nina Dias, Director
Nina Dias,Director

Nina Dias

Director

Located in the commercial capital of India, Mumbai, Nirmala Niketan Polytechnic (NNP) since 1955 has always stood for academic excellence and continues to do so. The Institution aims at the development of students through an education that is life oriented, career oriented and community oriented. “NNP has grown and diversified from a diploma course in Home- Science to professional courses in Interior Designing, Commercial Art and Fashion Designing. The changes in the courses depict that the college is constantly evolving to the needs of the society,” opines Nina Dias, Director, Nirmala Niketan Polytechnic.

The vision of NNP is ‘to educate and empower individuals with professional excellence in order to enrich society.’ With this, NNP has hosted a number of courses, such as a Diploma in Home Science, Teachers Training program, Home Maker’s course, course for teachers in Nursery school education, secretarial course, travel and tourism, Diploma in Medical and Laboratory Technology, Textile Designing, Dress making and many more. NNP in 1975 had a 3 year course in Applied Art by which students had to a foundation course and selected their preferred stream in either Interior Designing, Fashion Designing or Commercial Art. “The professional courses emerged, around 1977 whereupon the Interior Designing Diploma was a two-year course. Today, it is a well-recognized three-year Diploma programme,” says Dias.

In 2012, 2013 and 2014, NNP received the Best Educational Institute in Interior Design from the Institute of Indian Designers. At the AYDA (Asia Young Designers Award) function, NNP was declared as the Best Supporting Institute in 2017. The NNP student who presented designs was selected among the top five finalists from a pan India selection. Dias proudly claims, “Since 2010, we have been receiving many awards at intercollegiate and national events. The FOAID (Festival of Architects and Interior Designers) in 2018 awarded the gold medal to our students for the prize winning furniture design.” In fact, furniture design is a major highlight of NNP’s Interior Design programme.
“Interior Design is concerned with the design of space, and what makes space is furniture. Choice of furniture related to function, planning of space using furniture and creating a balance with furniture are integral parts of the Interior Design,” states Dias.

Believing in that the process is more important that the product, NNP starts teaching its students furniture design from the first year and continues till they actually design and construct life sized furniture at the third year. “The computer aided designing is also a huge strength. We teach our students different types of packages, which are relevant to Interior Design, and they become capable to design every aspect /every plan on the computer,” explains Dias. In a nutshell, the Interior Design Course at NNP is so designed that the students earn a well recognized diploma, as they learn from the excellent faculty and from expertise from the industry. The students will have hands-on experience with real projects and they will in turn with good design organization. Dias adds, “The integration of classroom study with practical, a multi-disciplinary approach, coordinating visual disciplines with new digital technologies make the Interior Design Course a very professional one.”

Today, NNP’s alumni members are working with highly reputed design firms across the country. Sonia Panchal, Alumnus of NNP’s Interior Design Department, says, “The specialty of NNP’s Interior Design course is its truly dedicated approach. As an individual, I have discovered and developed various qualities during this course like creative thinking, concept building, persistence in life and Art of articulation to name a few.” At NNP, students develop an approach to face several challenges they are likely to encounter. The study here is designed in a way to transform the lives of people to enjoy their living space and improve their quality of life. “The primary reason for such an ambience is that individual attention is given to the student. A small class size (Batch of 30) facilitates this,” pinpoint Dias. Society Interiors, a renowned magazine was instrumental in starting an intercollegiate contest on product design. Ms. Babita from the “Society” was inspired by the furniture displayed by the NNP students and was the brain behind this event. The students of NNP participate in this event every year.

Guiding students in every endeavour, NNP’s Interior Design Department is equipped with an excellent pool of faculty members. All the faculty members are professionals in the field of Interior Design, having a work
experience ranging from 32 years to 8 years. “All the educators have a high level of dedication and commitment to the institute and they utilize every opportunity to develop the students’ specific skills to increase their comprehension and mastery,” claims Dias.

To give the students the much-needed practical exposure, the institute arranges mandatory internship programmes after they complete their final year. This training gives students an extra edge, as they get into the real world of Interior Design. “It is an added input to their resume, and more important a time to discover what skill they need to improve upon. The internship is the first step towards employability and many of the students are grateful for the training they received here,” shares Dias. Some of eminent architects that our students have worked under are Ar. Nitin Kilawala and Ar. Swapnil Sawant (Worksphere). NNP’s Interior Design Department always looks ahead. “Our future plans include giving better academic thrust to facilitate further studies, improving infrastructure facilities to make the entire course computerized, and most important to establish a strong Industry Institute Linkage,” concludes Dias.

Nina Dias, Director
Dias is the Director of Nirmala Niketan Polytechnic (2016-till date) and an Associate Professor at College of Home Science, Nirmala Niketan with 35 years’ of experience. She has completed her M. Sc (Home Science) in Foods, Nutrition and Dietetics as well as several short-term courses such as Advanced Cake Decoration, Fruit and Vegetable Carving and Flower Arrangement. She is well versed in several subjects under the banner of Home Science with her main subjects being Food Service Management, Human Nutrition, Food Product Development, Practicals in Cookery, Clinical Nutrition and Dietetics, Management and Community Health. Her special skills and hobbies include creative arts and crafts, reading and baking – in which her skills were showcased in the December 2012 issue of ‘SAVVY’, a lifestyle magazine for women. In terms of outreach programs she has conducted several demonstrations on baking and food craft at various institutes, colleges and NGOs; Conducted courses on Nutrition for senior citizens and drawing classes for underprivileged children d as an SCC (Small Christian Community) coordinator at the local parish level for 3 years.