Never Give Up

Never Give Up

On Saturday, over 170 SSC students from the city and a few of their parents heaved a sigh of relief after attending the seminar, "You and Your Results" organised by Lighthouse Foundation, a not-for-profit enterprise created to facilitate personal transformation. The event was supported by The Rotary Club of Thane. The purpose seminar, which was held at Sahyog Mandir, was to reach out to stressed-out SSC students and help them deal with their impending results in a mature and sensible manner.

The seminar began a two-minute video clip that captured the reactions of students before results. They were asked, "What if you fail?" and the responses were expected: "I’ll run away", "I’ll be really depressed" and "I’ll feel hurt inside".

This was followed by an audio-visual presentation by Manoj Khatri, principal founder of Lighthouse. He began by flashing the names of SSC board toppers from the past few years on the screen and asking the audience if they recognise them. Very few did. Then, names of famous individuals like Thomas Edison, Dhirubhai Ambani, George Washington, Mark Twain, Walt Disney, Bill Gates and many more famous individuals were shown. Everyone seemed to recognise them and their achievements. Yet very few knew that they had all left education half way, were elementary school drop-outs or had never had any formal education. But that did not stop them from achieving unparalleled success. The message was loud and clear: Doing well in academics does guarantee success just as doing poorly in academics does not guarantee failure.

Abraham Lincoln’s story created a visible impact on the audience as he was introduced as the man who failed the maximum number of times before going on to become the President of United States. When the audience was asked what the moral of the story was, almost all of them unanimously echoed, "Never Give Up."

The Chief Guest of the evening was Jalaj Dani, Vice-President of International Operation at Asian Paints. He gave examples of Indians who had left their secure jobs to pursue their dreams. Harsha Bhogle, Shankar Mahadevan and Kalpana Chawla featured in his presentation.

The third panellist was Dr. Rajan Bhosle, well known psychologist and student counsellor. His address was made of little stories that urged the students not to attach any judgement to the many occurrences in their lives. With the help of a wonderful Sufi fable, he convinced people that happenings are neither good nor bad – they are just happenings.

A question and answer session that followed saw many questions being asked. Here Dr. Bhosle’s expertise came to use. Being a practising counsellor, he has several years of experience dealing with similar questions and he fielded them admirably.

After the seminar, most students and parents who were interviewed said that they were no longer as anxious about the impending board results. In fact students were thrilled with the many stories they had heard of people who failed and yet rose to heights of success in their lives.

Some of the other key messages of the seminar were: Each one of you is special. Trust and accept yourself. Don’t compare your marks. And never give up.

Since results are about to be declared, we’d like to appeal to all SSC students reading this to remember that "you are not your marks". Do not identify your self worth with your marks. In case you get less-than-desired grades or even if you fail, just remember that you will get a million more opportunities for success. Albert Einstein, one of the greatest scientists ever, had failed his entrance test Federal Swiss Polytechnic at the age of 16. Thankfully, he didn’t give up hopes, reappeared for the entrance test and cleared it. The rest is history.

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