We tend to be just a little bit envious when we are faced with the victories of our peers and siblings and even the most decent amongst us are quick to question why not me? In stark opposition to this there is a wonderful sense of happiness that comes from the achievements of one’s students. The best thing about this is that this is a feeling that is free from even the tiniest tinge of the hint of any envy or wanting to be in the shoes of the other person.
This was exactly the sense of happiness that I felt upon getting word from Saksham Sharda that he had been awarded the Erasmus Mundus European Joint Doctorate Research Fellow at the EU Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency.
The Erasmus Mundus programme aims to enhance the quality of higher education and promote dialogue and understanding between people and cultures through mobility and academic cooperation.
Noble aspirations; just what is needed in a world where even schools and children are not safe and are being targeted in senseless acts of violence. Understand other cultures and discover that their values are the same as yours and be at peace and live in harmony with your fellow humans!
It promised to be heady stuff where Saksham was headed– Doctoral research (Literature, Film and Self-Fashioning) jointly from Canterbury (UK), Prague (Czech Republic), Porto (Portugal) and Berlin (Germany).
Many moons ago Saksham had been at the cutting edge of the crème de la crème who were always at the forefront of my English Literature class at The Doon School, DehraDun. At times it was difficult to tell exactly who the teacher was — it was more often than not the students who taught and the teacher who learnt!
One of the components of this course was Shakespeare’s Macbeth. Imagine my sense of ecstatic light headedness when I read what Saksham wrote “My research is, broadly speaking, on the cinematic adaptations (and influences) of Shakespeare in different cultures.”
He goes on “I also have free research trips to Shakespeare’s Globe theater to top it all.” And then in inimitably Saksham fashion lets me know his grand plans for what he shall do with “our school wala Macbeth book there!” But let that be not all things can be shared in a blog –there are some things that are best kept amongst those who were on the same side of the portals of HMD’s classroom! There was joy there in the pursuit of knowledge!
Here’s to you, Saksham, as you set sail on your voyage of discovery! More power to you!