This is an initiative conceived by students of Vasant Valley School to inspire leadership and encourage cross-cultural exposure amongst students, via interactions with thought leaders and achievers.
Voices in Vasant Valley- an event that all students in the school have looked forward to since the beginning of the school year. As the date approached, and the excited anticipation increased, topics of conversation were confined, as if by an invisible wall, to matters relating to Voices. “Which speakers are coming?” “What do you think they’ll talk about?” Questions like these echoed off the school walls.
While some students were discussing their own opinions as to what Voices this year would look like, others were working hard to ensure the event could be carried out smoothly.
On the morning of 10th August,2018, as the usual last-minute arrangements and adjustments were made, the students and teachers organising the event were enveloped in both excitement and fear. But as the speakers started arriving, and the event kicked off to a start, the lingering anticipation evaporated, replaced instead with confidence.
While some students were running around school in a frenzy, relaying valuable information into their priceless walkie-talkies, the majority of the students were seated in the Vasant Manch, listening to the speakers who had come. These speakers (ranging from Kapil Dev to Anuja Chauhan) covered many topics and peaked the interest of those that they were speaking to. Students, from classes 8 to 12, listened intently as prominent figures they had seen previously on television or social media spoke to them live, and answered whatever questions they may have had.
What our ‘Voices 2018’ had to say at this year’s session
Mr Kapil Dev, a renowned Indian cricketer, discussed the state of Indian cricket today and further explained the trials and tribulations on the road to success.
“Don’t copy anyone. A duplicate can never be better than the original” said Mr Dev, as he inspired the entire audience.
Ms Mallika Dua, an affable comedian and proficient writer was the next speaker.
Ms Dua discussed the power of social media and spoke about those who exploit it. “What they want is engagement and that is what they should be denied” exclaimed Ms Mallika Dua on internet trolls.
A prominent businessman and the chairman and managing director of Havells India, Mr Anil Rai Gupta discussed the characteristics of a successful business and gave truly enriching advice to the audience. “If you can’t manage people, you can’t manage a business,” said Mr Gupta.
Ms Nayantara Rai, an insightful news anchor and bureau chief at ET now discussed her life experiences and journey through journalism. “My journey in journalism started right here in Vasant Valley,” said Ms Rai.
Mr Zorawar Kalra, a successful restaurateur who is deemed to be the torch bearer of molecular gastronomy in India discussed the state of gastronomy in India and further spoke on the importance of innovation. “Innovation is what is going to keep you ahead of the competition,” said Mr Kalra.
Founder of BitGiving, India’s first online social crowdfunding platform in December 2013, Ms Ishita Anand gave the audience extremely enriching advice on entrepreneurship. Ms Ishita Anand’s words on starting her own company, “The reality is that becoming an entrepreneur means spending seven to eight years of your life just solving a problem.”
Ms Roshni Nadar Malhotra, the Executive Director and the CEO of HCL Enterprise discussed her journey to success. “Continuity and leadership.” according to Ms Roshni Nadar are what has propelled HCL towards success.
The session ended with Ms Anuja Chauhan, a widely acclaimed author, advertiser and screenwriter. Ms Chauhan discussed the challenges she has faced as a writer and the importance of balance in life. “No matter what your gender is or what your job is, you need to have balance in life,” said Ms Chauhan.
As the final session came to an end, the various members of Vasant Valley family were overwhelmed with a sense of pride for what they had accomplished, and with that, the fourth edition of Voices in Vasant Valley came to a close.