Jivana jyoti


The American College, further to its focus on academic excellence, is keen on reaching out to the needy persons and in creating equal opportunities in the society. Jivana Jyoti (Light for Life) is a programme that has been designed and run for the welfare of the physically challenged persons for the last 24 years.

Jivana Jyoti at Madurai was started in the year 1990 with financial help from the Inter Church Service Association (ICSA) at Madras as the branch for the southern region of Jivana Jyoti, Madras. The Educational Development Services (EDS), India located in 93, Pantheon Road, Chennai under ICSA is in partnership with Jivana Jyoti at Madurai providing financial support every year. It is a partnership programme for training and rehabilitation of differently abled persons.

A total of 412 persons (248 boys and 164 girls) from urban and rural Tamil Nadu have received training. The minimum qualification for entry into the course is a pass in higher secondary.

In order to meet the growing and development needs, we are looking out for additional support from other sources for certain specific needs in the partnership programme.

An endowment fund has been established with contributions from individuals and organization in the USA, which enabled grant of financial assistance to the needy students of Jivana Jyoti.

Public recognition of the efforts for the differently abled has been encouraging to the college. In 1995 Lions Club, aura and the society for the physically handicapped honored Jivana Jyoti. In 1996-97 the city cultural association adjudged the training centre and the computer facilities as the best and gave an award of merit. The task now is to enlarge the programme to benefit more such persons.


The computer center in the Department of Applied Science is designed for free and convenient mobility of the differently abled students. We have 50 computers in the department with one server. The server is a WINDOWS NT Environment, in which the softwares like C, C++, JAVA, .NET, DTP, FLASH, and Visual Basic have been installed for the training of the students. Students gain good knowledge as we provide them with exposure on the latest softwares in the field.

The class room is located in the Department of Applied Science, next to the lab, in which 30 students can be seated. The need for a hostel was keenly felt to accommodate students who come from long distances especially when the nature and severity of the differently abled make travel almost impossible in public transport every day. A hostel was constructed in 1991 with financial aid from ICSA near the centre to accommodate 24 students (12 boys and 12 girls). The design and plan of the hostel are physically challenged friendly.

Placement after training has been good and is improving. The private sector and the Government are the main employers. The following numbers have got employed in public and private sectors.



Dr. R.P. Riesz is an Emeritus Missionary of the United Church Board for World Ministries. He served in India from 1962 in The American College, Madurai and in Teaching institutions of the Church of South India. Dr. R. P. Riesz is a Physicist and Computer applications enthusiast. He is a First Director and Founder of the Jivana Jyoti in Madurai.

His connection with India and a host of Indian Colleagues and Friends is intimate and detailed as is his acquaintance with the language, music and culture of South India. Now he is presently retired and living in Pleasant Hill, Tennessee.


At the end of the course a graduated student can:

  • Be able to find a job
  • Be able to run existing data entry software
  • Be able to do secretarial tasks, including word processing (Letter writing etc.,)
  • Be able to understand and use code files in several languages / packages (debugging/compiling/removing syntax errors)
  • Be able to use spreadsheet/word processors for custom work.
  • Understand the “Problem space” for a customer (estimate development time / requirements)
  • Understand several common “problem spaces” (Accounting, Payroll, Inventory, Billing, Drafting, Word processing, DTP, Web designing, Data entry etc.,)
  • Be able to connect up a computer system
  • Recognize internal parts (Drives Chips, Cards, Power etc.,)
  • Understand fundamental software structures in the computer (DOS, WINDOWS, system configuration)
  • Exhibit self confidence : Have success-experience, job motivation (Spoken English Interview skills etc.,)
  • Read and understand technical material in English (Books, magazines, manual etc.,)
  • Maintain document on any computer job
  • Be “Officially” prepared for job.

The Diploma is awarded by the American College. As per the instructions given by the VRC, the syllabus was revised

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