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ENRICHed with Transformation and Gratitude

As I reflect on the past academic year, I am filled with immense gratitude for the journey I've undertaken from a cherished career in the Indian Navy to a full-time academic position. Dearest readers - do indulge in traversing this expression of gratitude and a voyage of transformation in and through a cohort of learners.

Navy and an Academic Voyage. My naval career laid a solid foundation for my academic pursuits, enabling me to earn two master's degrees and later an MPhil and PhD. As director and head of research at the Maritime History Society, I gained valuable experience that set the stage for my transition to academia. I was privileged to be  the first research supervisor as a serving cum retired naval officer to guide a completed PhD at the Naval War College. Teaching research methodology and guiding mid-level officers has been highly rewarding. My straightforward approach to PhD guidance—helping students narrow their focus, identify research problems, and develop methodologies—has enriched my teaching at the Aditya Birla World Academy.

Transition to Full-Time Academia. Motivated by my interdisciplinary background and a passion for strategic studies, I found my place in academia, teaching Theory of Knowledge and Global Politics in the IBDP curriculum, as well as Global Perspectives in the IGCSE. My naval experiences profoundly influenced my teaching approach, emphasising an interdisciplinary and exploratory mindset.

A Knowledge Influence. Teaching Theory of Knowledge has been both a challenge and a journey of discovery. Guiding students to connect their personal knowledge journeys with the world outside has been incredibly rewarding. Similarly, in Global Perspectives, enabling students to examine global issues from various angles has been a collaborative and enriching experience. In the first year the opportunity to teach History to Grade 8 was a great journey of exploration into multiple themes across the 17th to 20th century.

Treasured Moments. The greatest takeaway from this past year has been the time spent with students, their curiosity, and their hunger for knowledge. Their love, respect, and desire to explore have been truly inspiring. Two cherished moments stand out. In a month-long “History Comes Alive” initiative it was encouraging to see even Grade 6th and 7th students along with senior students, take keen interest in the “1946 Naval Uprising.” In an associated panel discussion their passion and interest was inspiring. Secondly, the Theory of Knowledge Exhibition impressed parents and faculty alike when the DP students showcased an excellence integration of knowledge from the real world shared through exhibited objects including a broken beaker and a kirpan! 

ENRICHed for Learning. At the close of 2023 I found my reflections leading to a strategy for learning and knowledge influence captured by the acrostic ENRICH. I feel it apt to repeat what it conveys to me and maybe to you too:

  • Envision. Imagine and shape a future aligned with your deepest values and aspirations where you dream big, but ground those dreams in reality.

  • Nourish. Nourish mind, body, and spirit for comprehensive self-care. Adopt healthy habits, engage in continuous learning, and foster emotional resilience.

  • Reinforce. Build upon existing strengths and develop resilience. Recognize and leverage unique talents while diligently improving areas of weakness.

  • Inspire. Be an inspiration through actions, words, and leadership. Mentor, guide, and advocate for positive change, influencing with connection.

  • Competence. Commit to lifelong learning and professional development. Strive for excellence and mastery in skills, effectively applying them in real-world scenarios.

  • Hope. Maintain hope and optimism to drive progress and resilience. Keep a positive outlook, believing in the potential for change and growth.

Gratitude and Gazing Forward

I am deeply grateful to Dr. Neerja Birla, chairperson of Aditya Birla World Academy, Mrs. Radhika Sinha, the principal, the section heads, and my colleagues. Transitioning from a hierarchical naval structure to an inclusive and flexible teaching environment was made smoother by their support. Most importantly, I am grateful to the students who accepted me as their teacher. They have been my heroes, mentors, and encouragers, especially during challenging times.

Going forward, I aim to grow as a learner in this journey of delivering education. I hope to inspire others from the naval fraternity to explore opportunities in teaching, mentoring, and encouraging the next generation.

Thank you for reflecting on this journey with me. As I continue on this journey of transformation and gratitude, I invite you to join me. Whether you're interested in career, academic, or transition coaching, I’d love to hear from you. Please reach out at  & discover more about my work and offerings at 

Together, let's inspire, enrich, and elevate each other's paths.

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