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Inspiring Lecture

August 2010
Inspiring Lecture

Before becoming president of India, Dr. A. P. J. Abdul Kalam was director of the Defense Research and Development Organization (DRDO), where he often lectured employees about the importance of education. His words were not lost on V. Kathiresan, a high school dropout who served as Kalam’s driver for more than five years.

"One day while driving, Ayya (sir) suggested that I should resume my studies,” Kathiresan told Rediff.com. “He told me that the best way to go about it was through long distance education.”

The Tamil Nadu native followed Kalam’s suggestion, completed high school and kept going. Today, at age 47, he has three master’s degrees and a PhD, as well as a job teaching history at a government college. "I can never forget the role played by Kalam Ayya,” he said.

People often call Kalam a genius and perhaps they’re right. Who else could have turned a high school dropout into a PhD?

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