A desire to teach is fulfilled in the second innings of life. Dr. S.K.Haldar needs no introduction. He has written and shared stories with us from time to time and sometimes those stories have been about his students. He always dreamt to be a teacher and that dream materialized much later in life. Now, teaching is his primary profession. Teaching brings in rewards in terms of the love, affection and respect from his students and that to him is what drives and motivates him to keep on pursuing the dream.
Dr.Haldar in his own words…
When I was in elementary school, like any other kid I used to play pretend teacher-student games. Once I also taught in my village school during the two month’s vacation between high school and college. I completed my post- graduation and then obtained a doctorate of science degree. At that point, I could have easily have gotten a teaching job in a college. But I opted to work in the relevant industry though I was passionate about teaching from the core of my heart. But my subconscious mind always hesitated.
The eminent teachers under whom I had studied were highly knowledgeable. Their class room deliberation charmed me always. However, I continued my academic desire by teaching, certain courses, part time, in a postgraduate class at the local University, delivering lectures in international seminars, conducting PhD exams and publishing technical papers. This continued till the day of my retirement from my primary job.
At that juncture, I was invited by Presidency University, Kolkata,India to carry out some research project in the department and in reciprocation to teach final year postgraduate students for a very short course on industrial applications. I was given a free hand, I could decide on a syllabus of my choice, set question papers and evaluate. That started my class room teaching while following a structured syllabus. In the course of last 11 years, I now teach two subjects at Presidency University, one at Calcutta University and some intermittent teaching at Indian School of Mines. Teaching is now a full time job.
Even in the extreme summer and winter in India, I can teach for 3 – 4 hours at a stretch without any fatigue. I am often asked how. This is because the students in front of me, the young boys and girls are always brimming with energy and that enthuses me to be younger every year. The respect I earn from my fellow younger faculty members, the love I receive from my students are the source of my vitamin replenishments. I receive frequent e-mail and phone calls from the students saying that they are doing very well in their job and feel very happy about it. Perhaps that is the best reward and gift that I was looking for.
My second inning’s is filling my unfulfilled dreams of life. If one has a sincere and honest desire, time will present the opportunity. Catch it- cash it and enjoy the opportunity.