Saturday, September 10, 2016

School for old women in Thane

Women Between the Ages of 60 and 90 Are Learning Their ABCs at This School for Grannies

A school that is open for only two hours a day, where the uniform is pink sarees and where all students are between the ages of 60 and 90. Welcome to Aajibaichi Shala (Grandmothers’ School).
Set up by Yogendra Bangar and the Motiram Dalal Charitable Trust, the school – located inPhangane, Thane – is perhaps India’s first school for uneducated grandmothers.
“We started this school to inculcate love and respect for the elderly,” Dilip Dalal, the founder of the Trust toldFirstpost.
Yogendra Bangar – whose brain child the school is – says “Everybody in the village encouraged us, no one said a thing against the school. They said: ‘Nobody has done something like this before. Whatever you are doing is good for the society. We are with you.'”
He continues:

“Knowledge has great importance in life. It is very important to educate these elderly people who never got an opportunity to go to school. We started this school to bring happiness to their lives and make the village 100 percent literate.”

Started on International Women’s Day this year, the school – at present – has 28 students.
Says 87-year-old student Ramabai Ganpat Chandelle, “”I am like a ripe fruit that might fall off the branch anytime. I couldn’t go to school as a child and remained illiterate all my life. But I don’t want to die illiterate. Now, I am happy that I would be able to carry a few words with me to the other world.”
“When I come back home, the grandchildren tell me, ‘Granny, this is how you write this,’ or ‘Granny, this is how you read this.’ They teach me everything. They sit and study along with me. It’s great fun. We read each other’s lessons. We read out poems to each other. We write our lessons… We are certainly happy that we became literate at this age,” says another student, Kantabai.
While literacy is the primary goal, the school also has other activities in the pipeline for the women: “We have planned some creative initiatives wherein they will be trained to make hand-woven quilts and paper bags,” said Bangar.

Friday, September 9, 2016

Meet the 50-year-old Chennai professor who holds 145 academic degrees. No kidding : FYI, News - India Today

​When I talk about Lifelong Learning​ I always refer to Senior citizens and retirees taking interest in learning activity. This is the maximum by number of degrees to be held by a single individual. 

Meet the 50-year-old Chennai professor who holds 145 academic degrees. No kidding
The visiting card of Professor VN Parthiban can barely hold all of the 145 academic degrees he obtained over the course of 30 years.  | Posted by KC Archana
New Delhi, September 7, 2016 | UPDATED 16:15 IST

1Professor VN Parthiban holds more than 145 academic degrees.
2He teaches more than 100 subjects in colleges across Chennai.
3He spends all his Sundays appearing for exams and studying.
Just when you thought having four academic degree is a lifetime achievement, along comes a man who holds not 4, not 40, but a whopping 145 academic degrees.
Yes you read that right!

Meet, Professor VN Parthiban, whose visiting card is like a book in itself, overflowing with hundreds of his academic qualifications.

The list of achievements will send you into a tizzy; he holds 8 Master of Law degrees(ML), 10 Master of Arts degrees(MA), 8 Master of Commerce degrees(M.Com), 3 Master of Science Degrees (MSc), 12 research degrees(M.Phil), and 9 Master of Business Administration degrees(MBA). He also teaches more than a hundred subjects in various colleges spread across Chennai.  

So, how did 55-year-old Parthiban, muster the strength to achieve this incredible feat?
"I really enjoy studying. It's not difficult at all," he said. "I have been continuously in the process of preparing for exams and applying for new degrees or diploma courses," he told the Sunday Indian.

For thirty long years, Partiban has been in the continuous process of applying for different courses. While we can hardly imagine a life without a lazy Sunday, this man has sacrificed all of it in writing exams, so much that invigilators know him by face.

Professor VN Parthiban comes from a humble family in Chennai, and during his days, it was not very easy to go to a college. He says that failure has been an integral part of his journey so far. "I struggled hard to finish my first college degree and got a job in the judiciary department", he said. He started applying to so many courses, that there were times when he studied for the wrong subject and failed the paper.

He even admits having a Mathematics phobia, saying, "I registered for Actuarial Sciences which I could not finish as it involved lot of mathematics which required a lot of effort."

But all of the 145 degrees has taken a toll on his memory, he finds it difficult to recollect people's faces and he even forgets directions to a place he visits every day.

However, Parthiban wishes to continue his journey of learning and collecting more and more degrees along the way.

See his list of degrees from a twitter page here: