With the formation of the new Orissa province in 1936, Shyamchandra Tripathi was appointed the first Oriya Principal of Ravenshaw College, where he had studied I.Sc. before going on to study Physics under Sir Jagadish Chandra Bose at Presidency College, Calcutta. In 1915, Tripathi left for Cambridge where, after passing the Tripos exams in maths and physics, he joined the research team led by Sir Edward Appleton in the Cavendish Laboratory. He returned to India after the War in 1919. Under Tripathi’s stewardship, community and extra-curricular life in Ravenshaw College attained new heights. Among the early Odia professors whose erudition, charisma and nationalistic ideals set the gold standard for academic and political life for the students of Ravenshaw College were Professor Kasinath Das (Professor of Sanskrit), Prof. Artaballabh Mohanty (Professor of Sanskrit and Oriya), Professor Mohini Mohan Senapati (Professor of Philosophy and son of the legendary modern Odia novelist Fakir Mohan Senapati), Professor Bipin Vihari Ray (Professor of Philosophy), and Professor Kruttibas Samantaray (Professor of English).

With the arrival of Professor Prana Krushna Parija as Professor of Botany in 1921, Ravenshaw College acquired a distinct recognition. The brilliant record of Professor Parija as a scholar in Cambridge and his contributions in botanical science helped Ravenshaw College gain its fame as a veritable centre for teaching and especially research. Professor Parija succeeded Prof. Tripathi as the Principal in 1938. Both Prof. Tripathi who went on to become the Director of Public Administration (D.P.I.) and Prof. Parija worked together to help Ravenshaw College grow in stature. [Insert pdf, Parija]

Amid the tumultuous years of World War II, the Quit India Movement and the garjat agitation, the College continued to expand its activities. More and more women students and faculty arrived. Among the new women faculty were the distinguished teachers such as Mrs. Padma Sundaram (Professor of History), Professor Ashalata Behera (Oriya), Prof. Prabhat Nalini Das (English) and Prof. Gaurirani Ghosh (Botany). The students of Ravenshaw College, inspired by nationalistic fervour and democratic ideals, started taking active part in politics. The Ravenshaw College Students’ Union was born around the time. Political heavyweights such as Subhash Bose and Sarojini Naidu addressed the students of Ravenshaw College on different occasions, inspiring the students to participate in several political protests organised during the freedom movement.