A De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) student who visited a school in the slums of Ahmedabad has described the trip as “incredible”.
Sweta Patel, who is studying for a degree in Education Studies with Psychology, said the visit to the school, close to the Gandhi Ashram in Ramapir No Tekro, had given her a fresh perspective on her course.
For Sweta, the visit to India was invaluable as she is studying a module on International Education and was keen to observe differences between classes in the ashram school and the UK.
“We saw the relationship the children had with their teacher and how important that was for them,” she said. “For many of them the teacher becomes more of a parent figure than they would be for children in this country.”
The group met the children and teachers, observed classes and toured the ashram, which is home to 120 children from the lowest Hindu caste.
DMU has launched Square Mile India to use the skills of students and staff to help young people and communities in the area.
See a video about our DMU Square Mile India project here
Read how the project has already started changing lives
DMU students travel out to India to build vital washrooms for schoolchildren
Research by the university’s academics will be used to support work improving access to sustainable energy, while students can have the opportunity to work on outreach programmes.
More than 200 DMU students are to be given the chance to put their degree skills into practice with DMU Square Mile India.
Sweta said she would be interested in being part of future programmes at the school. She said: “It was an incredible experience. I think it’s given me an international perspective of education. We saw how DMU could improve that school by raising money for technology and so on, and how we as students could help.”
David Hollis is operations manager of DMU Square Mile, which was created to share the skills of students and staff to benefit the community living near the campus. DMU Square Mile India covers the same area but has 160,000 residents compared to 7,000 in Leicester.
He said: “It’s an incredible place and everyone there has such a positive attitude to life it makes you realise how lucky and blessed we are. Hopefully we can now start to put plans in place for projects that Sweta and other students can take part in.”
Posted on Monday 29th February 2016