Friday, December 29, 2006

Speech to Poondi college students 21 November 2006

The topic was " Poondi to Punta Arenas" The audience was about 300 plus students of second year post graduation and faculty. The objective of the speech was to inspire the students from this rural college,where I had graduated.

I spoke about the challenges I had faced and the opportunities opening up for the students in the 21st century.

My first challenge was linguistic. After having studied in Tamil medium in the school, I had problems in the English medium college. The second challenge was agricultural. My family wanted me to be a farmer and did not see the use of college education. The third was cultural challenge. I had developed inferiority complex in the college with my village background After joining the Foreign service, I faced cultural challenges in adopting to the high profile diplomatic world. Latin America had challenged me culturally when I was posted there. I have been able to overcome these, regain self-confidence and be myself after my Latin America experience.

I was able to realise my dream of travelling to the farthest place ( Punta Arenas ) because I was lucky to find the college so close to my village. If it was not for that, I would not have gone to a college.

The youth of today are lucky to have before them a new era, new india and a new world and exciting times ahead. The new era of information and knowledge society has empowered the youth. Through computer and IT they can connect, communicate, collaborate and compete with the world. The new India is emerging as an economic power and indian business is going global. Indians have gained global recognition and admiration, thanx to the IT success.The globalising world is an opportunity to the young Indians in India as well as in the developed world which is becoming old and will face shortage of skilled human resources.

I advised the students to keep up the hunger for sucess and thirst for knowledge. They also need to have some imagination and craziness to keep them flying above the reality which could be daunting and discouraging.I narrated many stories and jokes and kept them animated

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