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“Dreams can often become challenging, but challenges are what we live for!” For all the computer students who are waiting for an opportunity to carve a niche for themselves then ‘The Great Mind Challenge’ is the one for them. The Great Mind Challenge (TGMC) is a Nation-wide software development contest conducted by the IBM Academic Initiative Team open for students of computer sciences or related fields. IBM with their Great Mind Challenge aims at improving the technical and real time application skills of the students. This contest gives students an opportunity to develop creative software applications which are not only new but also are of great value in practical usage. This is one of the finest opportunities for students to showcase their talent and improve their knowledge.

The eligibility criteria for this contest is that one has to be an engineering student studying computer science or IT, or a student of BCA, MCA, BE. Team participation is required with a minimum number of  two students to a maximum number of four from the same college per team and a faculty member of the college must be included. Building a team is must. Faculty registration along with every team is also mandatory. The registration process and participation is absolutely free of cost. IBM itself provides about 20 different topics and every team has to pick one among them and work on it. Apart from the prescribed topics, if any team is interested to work on any topic of their idea, that is welcome as well. “When we look at the topics provided, we feel that all these things are so useful and can make our lifestyle much more easy. For example, we have a topic called e-cops and this kind of application is already in implementation in other countries but not in ours. This way we get to work with something, which is fresh and at the same time useful”, says Khushbu, another B-Tech student.

Shortlisted Participants of TGMC '07. Credit: www.tgmc.in

Shortlisted Participants of TGMC '07. Credit: www.tgmc.in

TGMC 2008 had nearly 50,000 students from 1400 colleges participating from across India. There were close to 1050 project submissions out of which 20 emerged as winners. Over 400 workshops were conducted on the software products around the country in 2008. TGMC 2009 has been planned to be more extensive than previous years and aims to reach over one lack students. The Great Mind Challenge 2009 will enable participants to get a hands-on experience on IBM software products. Participating in TGMC will enhance students’ skills and ensure that they are mapped to real time-set industry demands. It gives you an opportunity to work with the world’s leading IT Company. It opens doors to placement opportunities according to one’s skill set.

The projects submitted by the students will be undergoing a thorough process of evaluations by the experts of IBM and few teams among all the participated teams will be shortlisted as winners. “The advantage with this contest is that if our project gets selected then we can add this project as our final project in our academics. The merit certificate that will be awarded will also be of a great value for us since it comes from IBM – one of the leading IT companies”, opines Anisha, a B-Tech student of Computer Sciences, who is keenly looking forward to participate in this contest. IBM also provides the students with the facility of using  IBM technology they might need for software development in the contest.

College Awards Credit: www.tgmc.in

College Awards Credit: www.tgmc.in

For all the teams registered there are about 100 IBM e-mentors available, who will guide the students and help them in case of any need. “The projects, which we will have to work with and submit here are completely real time applications so they increase our exposure to the practical world. Additionally we get to work with new software and technologies of IBM and that way we can get acquainted with software, which we haven’t worked with like DB2, AJAX, Eclipse, WebSphere etc”, says Akshita, another engineering student.

There are exciting prizes and rewards for the top teams in the contest. IBM decided to give away laptops to the wining teams and many i-touch phones and gadgets to the top teams. Special prizes for colleges and faculty will also be awarded. Apart from all this, the top three teams will go to the ‘IBM Wall of Fame’. For more information on this TGMC contest visit www.tgmc.in.

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