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DSM inaugurates India’s first composite material school

DSM inaugurates India’s first composite material school
Royal DSM N.V., the global Life Sciences and Materials Sciences company, today announces India’s first school made with composite materials from DSM has been inaugurated.

The school, situated in the village of Kusgaon, Pune, is a demonstration of DSM’s commitment to use its bright science in both Life Sciences and Materials Sciences to create brighter lives today and for generations to come.

The children attending the school will be able to take advantage of the very latest computer equipment and world-leading nutrition in one of India’s most advanced state-of-the-art schools. The school brings a number of innovations to Indian education. Made of composite materials, its lightweight and modular nature means it can be built by four workers in only six days (by non-skilled workers without the need for any specialist equipment), saving time, money and impact on the local environment compared to 5 to 6 months for traditional schools made from concrete. Its excellent mechanical properties and attractive design have also created a safe, strong, well-insulated and inspirational learning environment.

As the world’s biggest producer of vitamins and micronutrients, DSM scientists have also formulated a nutrition program that will help students attain their full academic potential. It has been calculated by the Copenhagen Consensus think tank that achieving adequate micronutrient levels in its population can impact a country’s GDP by as much as 2%.

The project has also been unique in the level of support it has enjoyed from many of DSM’s 22,000-strong global workforce, many have made personal contributions to help furnish the school with laptops and other educational equipments while others have even helped to build the school. DSM has matched all donations made by employees.

Furthermore, the partnership with OLPC, a charity based in Cambrigde, MA, USA, played a major role in supporting the pupils with the learning tools.

Michael Effing, President, DSM Composite Resins, said: “Education will play a key role in India’s development and this school represents a vital upgrade to the country’s existing education infrastructure: by combining with our colleagues elsewhere in DSM, we have made a difference in Kusgaon, India, that will be felt for years to come.”

Kalpesh Patel, Chairman and Managing Director, Kemrock Industries, whose joint venture partnership with DSM was responsible for building the school, said; “With its attractive design, excellent mechanical properties and ease of installation, the school proves that composite materials have a key role to play when it comes to delivering the next generation of Indian schools.”

For Santosh Gaikwad, headmaster of the school, the value DSM brings to Kusgaon was not limited to the physical structure of the classrooms: “We cannot underestimate the role of this school in creating the right conditions for our students to thrive. With world-class facilities, equipment and nutrition, our model school is now ready to educate our country’s next generation.”

DSM and Kemrock have identified many schools, mainly in under-developed rural regions, which could benefit from similar model schools. This kind of modular composite building can furthermore be used to deliver quick help after natural catastrophes like recent events in Haiti, Japan or New Zealand. The parts of the building guarantee easy assembly and no specific skill is required. Here, the benefits of composites allow for outstanding sanitary and hygiene conditions.