Didn’t we all wish we didn’t have to go to school, for once at least, during our school-going years? Obviously that wish remained an unfulfilled dream. But that’s not the case with this Mumbai teenager, Malvika Raj Joshi.
Her mother pulled her out of school four years ago
Malvika’s mother, Supriya, used to work with an NGO dealing with cancer patients. She would have encounters with school-going children of classes 8 and 9, who’d suffer from cancer, which intrigued her to a whole new level. “I decided that my daughters need to be happy,” she told PTI, reports NDTV. That’s when she decided to withdraw her daughter Malvika, who had been studying in 7th grade, from school.
Malvika remained an ace student irrespective of whether she went to a proper school or she ‘unschooled’.
“In India, people are still not very aware about the term “home schooled” or “unschooled” as it is commonly referred,” Supriya adds. Malvika took immense interest in her studies which Supriya took care of after quitting her job especially to maintain an academic curriculum for Malvika. She maintained a classroom atmosphere in her house to ensure Malvika got the best of education for she believes that “happiness is more important than conventional knowledge.”
The Indian team for IOI– Malvika, Srijon Mukherjee, Rajat De and Sampriti Panda (L-R) | Twitter
Malvika studied computer programming and excelled to the extent of acquiring one bronze and two silver medals at the International Olympiad of Informatics (IOI). She found a place among the top four students who represented India at the Olympiad for three consecutive years.
Hurdles in the way of Higher studies
Although Malvika “was learning more than ever- from the time she woke up to the time she was off to sleep and knowledge became a passion ,” as Supriya puts it, she faced problems in getting into top Indian colleges like IIT. That’s because she doesn’t have senior school (class 12) certificates which are prerequisites for admission into colleges here.
Despite that shortcoming, Malvika got admission into Chennai Mathematical Institute’s MSc level course since her knowledge is at par with the BSc level course.
For patience bears a sweet fruit (or Sabr ka phal meetha hota hai)
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) provides for admissions to Math, Physics and Computer Olympiads medalists.
Malvika has now got admission into Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) owing to her programming excellency which got her three Olympiad medals. She has been bestowed with a scholarship for her BSc (Computer Science) degree programme.
Well, Surpiya surely has been successful in breaking conventions and how! She sticks to what she believes when she says, “I tell parents to understand what their children like.”