The face of education has changed globally. Students have to attend classes from the comfort of their homes, taken in notes in their PJs, and this is the new normal for us all. Amidst the pandemic, graduating and receiving a degree has also lost its meaning. For the outgoing batch, the convocation ceremony or the farewell always holds importance as an essential meaning as it marks the end of something important. However, the students of IIT Bombay thought of something out of the way for their convocation ceremony. When we thought of 2020, we thought of AI bringing in an era of robots. However, that scenario has changed. Students of the college created digital avatars with VR creativity to attend their convocation ceremony virtually.
On Sunday, 23rd August, IIT Bombay hosted their 58th convocation ceremony and it was a little different than what generally happens every year. There were no students on the stage, instead, they were at home watching their avatars receive the degree certificate. Graduates received personal digital avatars that received a degree from the avatar of Director Prof. Subhasis Chaudhuri. Videos of the event were all over Twitter and it left the viewers awed at how far technology has progressed.
IIT Bombay stepped the convocation ceremony up by a notch by creating everything virtually. After that, they were provided access to their departments and corridors for them to move and loiter around. The entire process and digital avatars took over 2 months and 20 people to be put together completely. 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”. This initiative will be a stepping stone for other colleges in the future who are willing to conduct a convocation ceremony virtually.