As published in “Chennai 36: The IIT Madras Alumni Blog” here: http://alumni.iitm.ac.in/chennai36/no-pain-no-gain-says-rkv-sir/
I am an Indian with infectious levels of enthusiasm, a broad knowledge of curriculum, a caring attitude, a love for teaching and a burning desire to make a difference in the lives of young people. Students and staff fondly call me RKV Sir .
Leading by example has been my foremost trait which sets a trail for my admirers and teammates to follow. But, it goes without saying that no man has been successful without real sweat, hard work and struggle. The story my life has also been one such struggle, which acts as a piece of inspiration for thousands of my students countrywide.
I was born and raised in a small village in the Kota district of Rajasthan . My father worked in a stone mine and mother was a housewife. Both played an equal role of a big institution for me, teaching me how to live life with struggles, patience, humility, caring attitude, positivity, honesty and other ingredients necessary to make a man perfect . I studied in village school from class 1st to 8th and used to go on bicycle for 10 km to reach a town school for class 9 to 12th.
Soon after completing degree, I joined BHEL as a Trainee Engineer. That was a short stint because life had planned something really big for me . While waiting for the result of IAS(main)-1994 , I started teaching students of class 3rd-12th. My IAS result was not up to the mark, and I shifted to Kota for further preparation and teaching. I started teaching physics to support myself financially, to keep in touch with academics and to improve my soft skills, which I lacked in, thanks to my humble background.
But I soon realized that I was made for teaching . I taught Physics at a reputed coaching institute for around 6 years and then, in the year 2001, I decided to start-up and put my teaching and managerial skills to the test, and started a coaching institute called “Resonance”. I am a teacher by heart, a motivator and a dedicated academician. I still continue to take 3-4 lectures per day and live my dream of shaping young minds.
People identify me as an edupreneur (Educational Entrepreneur) . My students feel that I have got something which makes them solve and break through the toughest of problems in Physics. Thousands of students having limited means have realized their dream of being IITians by our efforts which is my source of infinite energy.
Insti and me
It takes me back to 1990, the year which started this great journey full of memories. Memories, that were both good and bad and yet so crucial that they made me what I am today.
And there I was, walking through the entrance of this huge campus, a dream which millions of students wake up to. I still remember my first day in IIT Madras, a day that was filled with great hopes for a fresh beginning and for a lifetime learning experience.
Being from a Hindi Medium and rural background, I was always sure of one thing, that these four years would definitely change me. I knew that this was needed for me for my overall development and personal grooming as well.
My initial days at IIT were not easy. I had always been a topper in my school days and thought that college would be no different. But that’s when I was proved wrong. Only because I did my schooling in Hindi medium and was not well versed with the English, I was left behind by all those proficient with the language. I developed an inferiority complex. But I strongly believed that “knowledge knows no barriers” and I struggled. Since my schooldays I had been focusing more on self-study. So, I knew that even if I didn’t understand anything in the classes, I could do better by studying on my own. So, I searched through the library, spent hours finding books which I thought would help me cope up with the lectures.
Though my initial performance was quite unsatisfactory, I slowly and gradually became comfortable with English. I started making notes and studied harder to gain that pace which I had been missing all these days.
Having talked about the quality lectures that were delivered by the professors, there were several other things that made IIT-Madras the fantastic institute that it is.
The Annual Fest, cultural events and several other activities kept all the students busy and wanting for more. Students participated actively in all these events and it created a spirit of vibrancy and liveliness in the campus. Being from a village, I had never seen such an environment before. Neither did I think I could be able to participate in any of those activities. That’s because, somewhere, that complex of being from a village was still deep-rooted within me.
We all waited for the motivational stories on Wednesday afternoons. India’s Who’s Who were called upon and were asked to share their success stories during the Extra Mural Lectures. To name some, we had the opportunity to interact with Mr. Sunil Gavaskar, Mr. Rakesh Sharma and Mr. Prakash Padukone. Listening to these people left a positive impact on one and all. The facilities provided inside the campus were amazing. I remember waking up early morning to avail the swimming pool facility.
Fortunately , I have good and supporting seniors and friends who are now well settled and have excelled in their career and lives. I thank them for making the entire journey more interesting and easy for me. We had almost everything that we needed for an overall development there. Such was the environment given by IIT Madras. Those days were really marvelous, and I cherish them.