A SMART Move can Change a Life
20-year old Shaheen is the first person in her family to pursue college education. Her welder father and mother are unschooled and elder brother left studies after grade 12. Overcoming moderate objections about fees and chall-enges involving travel costs, she managed to join ETASHA’s Vocational Training Program which promised a job. She was very happy when the course was changed to an On-line Course named SMART Online Job Readiness Program (during the lockdown), as that reduced the travel cost and the hassle of walking in the hot sun for part of the distance.
The program had an additional advantage as the parents were able to see and hear all that she was learning and that she was being appreciated by the faculty for her performance. She feels that this increased the respect in the family and her mother started to say that out of her 4 children (3 boys and 1 girl) she was the smartest.
Shaheen says “I enjoyed the WPS classes because they helped my revise my computer knowledge, and I really liked the English classes. I was not very confident earlier, but I gained confidence too. Also learning to use Google maps gave me the confidence to travel alone. Now, I can go anywhere – I don’t feel scared.”
Her course got over in July 2020 and she joined work at an Educational Institute near her home as a telecaller. While her parents agreed to her working for a few months, she wants to work and save for her future and feels that slowly her parents will get used to the idea of her working and she can continue.
She is keen to become a teacher and wants to do a B. Ed. Course after completing her BA next year. In the meantime, she likes her job and is enjoying learning and is getting financially empowered too.