Friday, August 3, 2012

My Second Summer at Dev Sanskriti Vishwavidyala (DSVV)

After coming to DSVV last year and meeting such good people, I thought I should come here at least once more and recreate the magic. My experience was good last year because I came with an open mind and was ready for anything and everything. I had 2-3 projects to do which involved going to different offices and collecting information. As much as I hate introducing myself 5 times to 5 different people in one day, I did it, because I needed to do it. I did end up finishing all the work I was given and actually did more than was expected.

There were 2-3 people I met last year who will be ingrained in my mind for the rest of my life. It was partly because of them that I wanted to come back again so quickly.  Also the beauty and fragrance of the flowers on this campus, the greenery and the just the peacefullness of the enviroment is hard to find anywhere else.

View of plumeria outside my room.

As before, the Pro Vice Chancellor, Dr. Chinmay Padya, gave me good projects to work on: making departmental brochures, proof reading, finalizing the induction book (an orientation booklet to DSVV) and some other work.

And just like last year my challenges began………last year also I had felt the differences in how academic institutions work in USA and India, and this year that difference became even more pronounced. Of course DSVV is not your typical university. It has a different philosophy, it does not charge any fees from its students and all faculty and staff work mostly on volunteer basis. The entire campus is like a big family, everyone lives on campus and knows each other etc etc.

The first few days passed by quickly and nicely as I was meeting with some old friends and working independently on the induction book. But as soon as I had to start going to the various departments to get information regarding the brochures, all my feelings of the previous year came back to me. I cannot image in USA that faculty will not be available in offices the week before classes start. There is generally very poor communication, people are not too email oriented, and if they do check emails then they don’t reply. But my thinking is that with little bit professionalism a place can be made even better.

Or maybe this is just my view……some people say I am a perfectionist, but the truth is I take pride in my work, I value the people around me and I prefer to finish my work on time.

This year was somewhat different than last year. Work was a little slow just like last year, but last year I got to do a lot more reading on SharmaJi’s literature than this year because this year I had my laptop. Because of this I could finish the work ChinmayJi gave me a lot faster. I was not tutoring anyone this year so my evenings were more free – which I think was good and bad. The good - I finished all my blogs on Kailash; the bad – I ended up watching movies sometimes instead of reading some good books.

All in all, the one month at DSVV was good this year. When will I be here or even in India next? Only Krishna knows………he is the driver of my life.

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