I am a keynote speaker and a grant writer with domain expertise in sustainability, community engagement, education, and personal development.
I have won the Presidential Award in Innovation and the Governor’s Celebration Award.
I am a NASA Solar System Ambassador, National Geographic educator and an award-winning STEM instructor.
I work with various students, entrepreneurs, and nonprofits to help them with their mission, vision, and long-term goals.
Through Hardships to the Stars
My journey to becoming the leader I am today started back home in India. Born amongst the vibrant culture and tradition of North East India, I never experienced gender disparity. However, it was not the same when it came to picking professions. Back then, if you were not a doctor or an engineer, you were classified as “an average” student.
When I chose to study bachelors in science, I was tagged average, but I was determined to prove that I had the potential to make a difference. After my bachelor’s, I worked hard for my masters, but it was not enough to get me a job in the United States in 2003. So, “I reduced my qualifications and still could not find a job”.
Finally, after five months of volunteering, I got a job as a cleaner and cashier at a local hospital. I was happy that I got into the workforce.
However, It was not until late 2004 that I got an adjunct faculty position at a community college that I was able to get back to my academics. Thirteen years later, in 2014, I got back to a PhD Program only to be disappointed once more, but I persevered and obtained my second masters in Honey bee research.
I was at a very low point in my life when something unexpected happened: I was invited to become a high school teacher. After a year of being a high school teacher, I came across another turning point in my life. I received an email from Lemelson-MIT for a $10K grant application.
Since then, my students and I have applied for numerous grants along with filing 4 patents and establishing companies as early as 8th grade through my program called DRIPBL (Dream Research Innovate Project Based Learning).
Through my struggles, I have become a bridge for high school student success in the STEM and Innovation field: a dream that I had when I was growing up. I have become the person I was looking for 30 years back!!
| “Sometimes, our adversities in life lead us to discover our strengths”