Customer Stories / Education
Mahatma Gandhi University Drives Local Economic Development in India Through Digital Learning on AWS
Mahatma Gandhi University (MGU) is a higher education institution in the Indian state of Kerala. To enhance accessibility to its courses, the university developed a digital learning platform on Amazon Web Services (AWS). The platform includes student management and evaluation systems, as well as a collaborative portal that caters to both online and on-campus programs.
MGU worked with AWS Partner Amvion Labs to build its digital learning platform on Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) instances, using Amazon Relational Database Service (Amazon RDS) to manage its databases and Amazon Elastic Block Store (Amazon EBS) for storage. As a result, MGU is providing fast and convenient access to highly available education systems across Kerala.
Opportunity | Expanding Access to Higher Education in Kerala
Situated in Kerala, a state of 33 million people in India’s far south, Mahatma Gandhi University (MGU) is named after the renowned Indian civil rights figure Mahatma Gandhi. Since its establishment in 1983, MGU has offered a growing range of academic degrees, positioning itself as an extensive research-based university leading the development of indigenous technologies.
MGU embarked on a mission to broaden its offerings through online courses, catering to residents across the state in both urban and rural areas. The goal was to provide an accessible online education platform to a wider audience, transcending geographical boundaries.
Initially, MGU launched its online education platform to run in the university’s on-premises data center. The platform includes a learning management system (LMS), evaluation systems, and a collaborative portal for seamless resource sharing between students and teachers. Over time, the university saw the data center infrastructure wasn’t fit for scale; plus, there were frequent periods of downtime. Vishnu Saju, assistant director at Mahatma Gandhi University, states, "We knew our on-premises infrastructure couldn’t support the compute, storage, and networking bandwidth requirements to deliver online courses."
With AWS, we can easily scale resources to accommodate changing workloads. The transition has resulted in seamless access to resources for students, regardless of their location, with improved load times, system responsiveness, and uninterrupted availability.”
Assistant Director at Mahatma Gandhi University
Solution | Migrating Online Education Platform to AWS to Meet Dynamic Workloads
MGU decided to transform its online education platform running on premises to a cloud-based solution. Amvion Labs, an AWS Partner, approached the university with a proposal to construct a digital learning platform on AWS that supports both campus-based and online programs. Saju says, "Amvion Labs provided us with valuable insights and showcased an extensive knowledge of migrating workloads to AWS."
Engineers at Amvion Labs began developing environments on AWS designed specifically for the migration of on-premises workloads to the cloud. Throughout the build and migration phase, Amvion Labs collaborated closely with the newly established MGU Innovation Foundation (MGUIF) team. The entire migration process was completed in approximately one month. "The Amvion Labs team was always available to provide guidance on best practices and offer recommendations for optimization," Saju adds.
Amvion Labs migrated the university’s student LMS, which supports enrollment processes and teacher progress tracking, and its Automated Learning and Evaluation Management System to Amazon EC2 instances. MGU also adopted Amazon RDS, a collection of managed services that makes it simple to set up, operate, and scale databases on AWS. Additionally, it uses Amazon EBS, an easy-to-use, scalable, high-performance block-storage service and Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) for static imagery. MGU also engaged Amazon CloudWatch for security monitoring of applications and infrastructure. Saju says, "With AWS, we can easily scale resources to accommodate changing workloads. The transition has resulted in seamless access to resources for students, regardless of their location and a 50 percent improvement in performance with uninterrupted availability.”
Outcome | Expanding Opportunities While Supporting Local Economic Growth
Using AWS, MGU seamlessly supports its campus-based and online programs—while also enjoying 40 percent cost savings compared to its on-premises infrastructure. What’s more, it has reduced the time to market for new services by 50 percent, decreased latency by 80 percent, and increased management efficiency by 90 percent. Comments Saju, “With our systems on AWS, the university can evolve in several ways, unlocking numerous opportunities for growth and innovation. Plus, the university can optimize costs based on actual usage by using the AWS pay-as-you-go model.”
By making higher education more accessible across Kerala, MGU is actively contributing to the state's objective of increasing the gross enrollment rate in higher education (GERHE) from 38 to 75 percent. Says Saju, “The migration to AWS has facilitated more efficient and accurate grading, providing timely feedback to students. It has also led to increased student participation and improved retention rates, which will help drive the local economy.”
About Mahatma Gandhi University
Mahatma Gandhi University in Kerala, India has a student population of over 18,000. The university provides a wide range of educational programs at the undergraduate, postgraduate, and doctoral levels, encompassing disciplines ranging from the sciences to social sciences and humanities.
AWS Services Used
Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) offers the broadest and deepest compute platform, with over 600 instances and choice of the latest processor, storage, networking, operating system, and purchase model to help you best match the needs of your workload.
Amazon Relational Database Service (Amazon RDS) is a collection of managed services that makes it simple to set up, operate, and scale databases in the cloud.
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Amazon Elastic Block Store (Amazon EBS) is an easy-to-use, scalable, high-performance block-storage service designed for Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2).
Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) is an object storage service offering industry-leading scalability, data availability, security, and performance.
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