Allahabad University Psychology Alumni Association is the group of alumni of the Department of Psychology, University of Allahabad, Prayagraj. The department which started on September 23, 1961, has shaped the lives of all the students, who now are together in this group to promote the overall well being of the department.
About the Department
The study of the human psyche and search for the ‘why’ of human behavior has always been an integral part of our thinking and heritage in the Indian tradition. Modern "scientific" psychology made a late entry as an independent discipline. As in other places, psychology was taught as a special paper in both the Department of Education and Philosophy. However, in its yearning for more comprehensive knowledge, the Philosophy Department around 1960 requested the university and the University Grants Commission (U.G.C.) for a psychology laboratory and an additional post of Professor of Psychology. The UGC was willing to oblige but recommended the establishment of a separate Department of Psychology in the university. The then Vice-Chancellor, Dr. Ranjan decided to look for a suitable person to fill the position. His search produced only one name in the field- that of Prof. Durganand Sinha. Prof. Sinha was educated at Cambridge University and at Patna University. He had practiced and taught psychology at Patna University and Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur. Formally, Prof. Durganand Sinha was appointed Head and Professor, Department of Psychology, in 1961. For almost six months the department consisted of just one faculty and Prof. Sinha shared office accommodation with the Dean, Students Welfare. None could have predicted that such 'accidental' beginnings of a department could produce such far-reaching consequences for the growth, quality, and development of the discipline in India in later years. Dr. C. H. K. Mishra, a scholar, playwright, and writer and Dr. Prem Shankar, were the first two faculties to join, followed by Dr. R. K. Mishra of Lucknow University. Later, Prof. R. C. Tripathi joined as a research scholar from IIT Kharagpur and was appointed as a lecturer. Later, he went on a Fulbright Fellowship and obtained his Ph. D. from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. From its very beginning, the department started acquiring a distinct identity of its own on the campus.
After the establishment as a separate department in 1961, the department progressed in various phases. Staff expansion took place and Prof. E. S. K. Ghosh, Prof. U. N. Agarwala, Prof. M. Verma, Prof. N. Dhawan, Prof. R. K. Naidu joined the teaching faculty. In 1977, in recognition of its activities, as well as the potential for growth as a higher center for studies in psychology, the UGC approved it as a Department of Special Assistance (DSA). Under the scheme, the department was provided by the UGC with a generous grant to strengthen its various research and teaching activities for the duration of the Fifth Plan period. The UGC later extended the scheme till March 1985. The department chose the area of 'Social Change and National Development' as its focal theme. The infrastructure of the department was upgraded to fulfill its commitments as a Center of Higher Studies. A well-equipped laboratory and perhaps one of the best libraries for psychology in this region of the country was possible due to the generous resources of the UGC. Additional building grants were also provided and an annexe was constructed. There was a staff expansion. Some very renowned and competent faculty were recruited under the Special Assistance Scheme. Prof. Janak Pandey, a Ph.D. from Kansas University and working at IIT Kanpur was offered a post of professor in the department. Prof. Girishwar Mishra from Gorakhpur University, Prof. A. K. Dalal from IIT Kanpur and Prof. U. C. Jain from Rajasthan University were notable additions to the staff.
The faculty has the unique distinction of receiving some very prestigious fellowships in select areas. Prof. E. S. K. Ghosh was awarded Nuffield Fellowship at the University of Bristol. Senior Fulbright Fellowships were awarded to the following faculty: Prof. Durganand Sinha, Prof. Radha Krishna Naidu, Prof. Rama Charan Tripathi, Prof. Ajit K. Dalal, Prof. Janak Pandey, and Prof. Nisha Dhawan. Commonwealth Fellowships were awarded to Prof. K. Thapa, Prof. D. Punetha, and Dr. N. Kohli. Commonwealth and Senior Visiting Fellowship was awarded to Prof. J. Pandey. U.G.C. Career Award and ICSSR Senior Fellowships were awarded to Prof A. K. Dalal. The young scientist award was conferred on Prof. P. Singh by the Indian Science Congress Association. In recognition of its outstanding contribution to the field of psychology in India, the department was upgraded as the Centre for Advanced Studies (CAS) in 1984 by the UGC.
About the Association
The seed of the Association was sawn in the 2nd Alumni meet held on January 26-27, 2019. The alumni together decided to form an association and get it registered under the Societies Registration Act 1860 on July 10, 2019. A Committee was formed to draft Memorandum of Association and complete necessary formalities for registration. Prof. Janak Pandey was made Chairman of the Committee. Other members of the Committee were Prof. Rashmi Kumar (President), Ms. Harshita Kesarvani (Vice President), Dr. Kavita S. Agarwal (Honorary Secretary), Ms. Madhurima Sinha (Joint Secretary), Prof. Namita Pande (Treasurer).
Aims and Objectives of the Association
- To reach out to the alumni and keep everyone connected.
- To keep a track record of all the students graduating from the department, and keep them connected with each other, the faculty members and colleagues, and the department.
- To organize annual events, seminars, workshops, and other programmes for continuing education and lifelong opportunities for alumni.
- To help out in the placement and mentoring of the students of the department.
- To generate necessary resources and funds to facilitate the education and training of students in the department.
- To apply for grants and funds at government and other developmental agencies to support projects on psychological well-being and development of individuals and organizations.
develop liaison with similar organizations and individuals.
- To take necessary steps in providing psychological and research services for the welfare of society and human development.