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Today Date : Sunday, April 14, 2024

"16,008 Female Students in Salem District See Dreams Come True with the 'Pudumai Pen' Initiative"

"16,008 Female Students in Salem District See Dreams Come True with the 'Pudumai Pen' Initiative"

Pushpa Sri, a second-year Bachelor of Economics student from Salem, shared her journey from a government school in the Kombaikadu area to pursuing higher education. She emphasized the positive impact of the scholarship under the' Pudhumai Penn" , which eases the financial burden on her family and helps her purchase essential study materials for competitive exams, ultimately leading her towards her dream of achieving multiple accomplishments.
Like Pushpa Sri, the Salem District administration has documented hundreds of case studies of girl students
who have benefited from the Pudhumai Penn programme. A brain child of Chief Minister M.K Stalin,
the programme is an offshoot of the Muvalur Ramamirtham Ammaiyar Higher EducationGuarantee Scheme. Initiated in September 2022, it seeks to uplift girls' higher education,recognizing the pivotal role women play in the development of society, on par with mencontributing to Tamil Nadu's progress in the areas of science, technology and economy.
Considered as a groundbreaking initiative, the Pudhumai Penn programme aims to promote gender equality, combat child marriage, and provide financial support to female students who face obstacles in pursuing higher education due to family circumstances and poverty. It also encourages female students to pursue their chosen fields of study, enhancing their skills and career prospects. To qualify for the "Pudumai Penn" scheme, female students must have completed their education from Class 6 to 12 in government schools in Tamil Nadu or have studied in private schools from Class 6 to 8 and then switched to government schools under the Right to Education Scheme. There are no income limts and the scholarships are available for students pursuing certificate courses, diploma programs, undergraduate degrees, vocational courses, and para-medical courses.
Eligible students receive a monthly Higher Education Scholarship of Rs.1,000, credited directly to their bank accounts. In its initial phases, the program disbursed Rs.9,59,28,000 to 7,994 female students in Salem district in the first phase, followed by Rs.5,60,98,000 to 8,014 female students in the second phase. A total of Rs.15,20,26,000 was allocated to 16,008 female students to support their higher education endeavors.In a heartening development, higher education enrollment in Salem district witnessed a significant surge from 48.50 percent in 2021-2022 to 52.62 percent in 2022-2023, showcasing a remarkable 4.12 percent increase in just one year. District Collector Mr. S. Karmegam noted that this innovative program aims to bolster the women's community and drive self-sufficiency in a robust economy. 
Hailing from a modest background, Alpita is now studying second-year B.Sc Chemistry at Salem Government College of Arts and Science for Women. She acknowledged the financial support of Rs.1,000 per month as a significant boost to her education. Alpita expressed her gratitude to the Chief Minister M.K. Stalin for the "Pudhumai Pen" programme , which has transformed the dreams and aspirations of students like her into reality.