FROM THE HOD
SCM online is one year old! And we couldn't have done it without any of you. Thank you Sr. Anila, for always being supportive and encouraging and approving most of our suggestions and guiding us through a difficult time.
Thank you, Jeroo, Jerry, Sainath, Smruti, Ravi, Sunayana, Sunitha, Geeta, Suresh, Shola, Mayank, Parth, Arwa, Anushka, and Sruti. We rock! Our combined strength is the sea that SCM keeps afloat. Thank you for adapting to the challenges of technology, time and personal anxieties to help see SCM and the students through. We often forget that teachers are all too human and go through all the challenges that students do. Thank you for being there for the students and for the department.
Thank you, Nilesh, Gracy and Dinkar, for holding up your end despite very real threats to your life and many other challenges.
Most of all, thank you Shyma and Neeta: my hands, my shoulders to cry on, my sounding boards, my stress relievers, my support systems, my critics, my anxiety relievers and the reason why I sailed through this year of personal challenges, loss, celebration, anxiety and learning.
Our ex-students have always played a huge part in our ecosystem. They are our sternest critics but they always come through whether it is to support students who need monetary assistance, to mentor our media professionals in training, or to work with us. This year, we acknowledge all of you but special mention must be made of Sameer Panchasra who has been instrumental in helping us set up this website.
To all of you then,
I couldn't have done it without you.
Social Communications Media Department
FROM THE FACULTY
Are you afraid?
You have a right to be.
People talk a lot of nonsense about fear. The worst line is, ‘The only thing I fear is fear itself.’
The first time I heard it, I could smell the putrefaction of the gut and the lower intestine on that line.
But only because fear was built into us as a defence mechanism. We are built to fear, we are born to fear.
The problem is how to deal with it.
So I have a strategy. It may work for you. It may not. Try it.
I have a fear book.
I write down every fear that comes along. And I make it a point to look back at old fears.
I am afraid my father will die.
(He did. I survived.)
I am afraid I will be rejected.
I was. It hurt. I survived.)
I am afraid I have cancer caused by my smoking.
(I had a sore throat. It wasn’t cancer. I stopped smoking but ten years later.)
I am afraid I will never get another job.
(I did. It wasn’t the dream job. But it paid my bills and kept me going until I stopped needing a job.)
When I look back at my old fears, I think: ‘That’s what you were worried about, Jerry?’
Then I remind myself. ‘But then the fear was real.’
And I say to myself, ‘The fear I’m feeling now? That is real now. But it will pass’
The nasty part of me says, ‘Yes but only because another fear is coming.’
The sane part replies: ‘Sure, but this one will be small soon.’
And so it goes.
Writing down a fear is a small act of distancing.
It is a witnessing.
It is a space in which you can look at yourself.
This is meditation.
Now write down those fears.
‘I don’t think I’ll get a job.’
‘I don’t know what I want to do.’
Whatever the fear is.
Eat more channa and other thoughts on fear
Almost fifty years ago, Mark Granovetter showed that most professionals land jobs through people with who they have occasional or rare contacts, in other words, not their friends with who they have regular contact. As the class of 2020-21 goes out into the professional world, staying in touch with the many people that you met this year through your assignments and projects will not only help build your professional networks, but will also help you stay connected with everything that is going around you. It really is all in the network.
DR. SUNITHA CHITRAPU
It's all in the network
Congratulations to you all, the first virtual batch of SCM, on (nearly) reaching the finishing line of the country’s most grueling and demanding media course.
Your talent and resilience in the most extraordinary circumstances this academic year has been heartening. Most of you responded well to the demands made on you and delivered even when your mojo was low
This is a difficult year in which to earn your post-graduation laurels but precisely because there’s so much uncertainty and chaos you’ll find little nooks and crannies where you can begin to show your work and your swag.
Now, welcome to the large, generous, warm and nourishing alumni that’s all of us on this side of the classroom.
Threads to hold onto
and navigate through
complexities of life.
A professional setback or
a broken heart,
A lonesome pandemic
or the clutter called memory,
hold onto any thread and
start walking -
it will lead you
out of your catastrophe!
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ W h o A m I ? ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ D o e s n ‘ t M a t t e r ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ L e s s o n L e a r n t ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ I t ‘ s O k a y ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ S t a y T h e r e ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ F i g u r e O u t ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ N o t T o d a y ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ A c c e p t ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ P r i o r i t i s e ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ B r e a t h e I n ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ I D o n ‘ t K n o w ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ B e K i n d ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ P r i o r i t i s e ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ H o l d O n ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ T h i s i s i t ? ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ D o n ‘ t A s s u m e ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ P r i o r i t i s e ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ A c t , A c t , A c t ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ S h o u l d I ? ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ S T O P ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ I f o r g i v e . ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ T h a n k y o u . ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ F l y ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ N e v e r S e t t l e ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ A c c e p t . ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ I C A N ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ I s t h a t l o v e ? ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ I W I L L ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ K e e p W a l k i n g ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ W h y n o t ? ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ B r e a t h e O u t ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ T h a t ‘ s N o t M e ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ W a k e U p ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ K n o c k , K n o c k ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ K e e p C r a w l i n g ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ I A M ~ ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ L i v e I n N O W ~ ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ I T r y ~ ~
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ L e t ‘ s D o I t ! ~
I have been teaching at SCM for about 15 years now. This year has been both the most challenging and the most rewarding for me as a teacher. Challenging because I'm used to being in a classroom and communicating with words, tone of voice and body language. Rewarding, because the batch of 20-21 is the most courageous group of students I have come across. They were caught off guard by the pandemic, they battled Zoom fatigue, they managed to work hard and creatively in the midst of the chaos that has been this year and they managed to keep a smile on their faces throughout. And all this, without ever once meeting their teachers or their classmates in person. A truly remarkable batch. Ladies and Gents of SCM 202-21, I doff my hat to you!
Lets put the year 2020-21 in perspective. Actuaries predict that babies born in the year 2000 will have an average lifespan of 100 years. That means you have worried and stressed about 1/100th of your life!
What you have also done is equipped yourself with invaluable knowledge of how to make the best of the balance years. You have learnt how to raise questions. You have learnt how to look beyond the skin-deep. You have examined and learnt about gender, deprivation, environment and most importantly: your privilege. We hope you will use this knowledge to make a difference. You have learnt how to overcome one of the greatest challenges of the times and survived it. With flying colours!
We both, the faculty and you, were new to this reality. We both learnt together and successfully navigated a difficult and stressful year. Together. This unique bond, of being immersed in one of the toughest times together, yet never having met physically, is forged with steel and will not be broken. I will remember each of you. Individually. Though I may find it difficult to recognise you, if you look different from your DP!
We have seen some brilliant work through this year. Everytime we got submissions, we were blown away by the work. It is phenomenal; the amount of work you have achieved, working in teams, remotely, from all over India, overcoming great personal challenges. I am thrilled to have been a part of your journey. I am positive you will go out and conquer the world! Bon Voyage!
In the last few years, I have never taught a batch as good as yours. I have never given 7 and 8 for assignments. Yours is the one batch I would have loved to teach in a class. Sadly that was not possible.
The only thing I missed was wearing saris to class and getting compliments for my saris and jewellery. Now with Covid, I have put on so much weight I can’t get into a single choli!
I was also very, very happy that so many of you attended my Ted talk.
I was also most touched that when my sister died you all sent me messages of condolence. But the best was singing happy birthday on my birthday!
May all of you go out and do good work for others. That is the one thing that will give you more joy than you can imagine. And please do try Vipassana. It changed my life.
I am now editing my father’s memoirs and nothing is giving me greater joy!
What a year of learning this has been! Just when I had streamlined my curriculum and teaching schedule and thought that I could take it easy in the new semester, wham came the COVID 19 Pandemic and subsequent lockdown!
Asked to proceed with online classes was a super huge challenge for a tech-challenged me. With butterflies in my stomach, I approached my first online class with the new batch of SCM students.
Unknown faces, voices, systems, spaces, tech-savvy students, teaching style et all didn’t make it any easier. I marvelled at other faculty members who were sailing through their lectures.
But several hiccups later, I too could tell Nirmita and Shyma that I would manage my class and they could relax.
The pandemic year made me relook my hitherto style of teaching and I learnt to draw up new lesson plans for each class. I learnt to make the content stand on its head; become much more interactive and the lesson plans better structured.
By the end of it, I was actually enjoying the online classes as they brought the students that much closer; especially those who had started participating regularly. It also drove home the point that those who wanted to learn would be there listening; those who didn’t would continue to hide behind the camera screen.
I realised that the case is the same in a physical classroom scenario; not everyone is as attentive in every class. The students’ non-participation was not really a reflection of the way I shared content and experience in class. It was a strangely liberating thought!
Teaching in a Pandemic year
Firstly I want to begin by saying Thank you,
If teaching online can be harrowing for many, getting taught online can be just as difficult
Thank you my dear digital radio silence batch of 2020-21 for being patient.
Thank you for rising up to every challenge
Thank you for just being present!
Leaving you with a few mantras that life taught me:
*Do not assume. Ask a question to seek clarification
*Keep a pen and a notebook. Writing notes will never go out of style. It will probably save you.
*When Murphy’s law strikes, Stop! Take a moment and ask yourself ”Will this matter in the next 5 years?” Remember you are in charge of your own happiness!
*Be on time, Be prepared, Be Positive, Be kind just Be the better person, it requires zero talent.
*I read this somewhere and I think it would really help in your professional career. “ Dance like no one is watching but Text, Post and Email like it will be read in court one day”
Do well, take care and shine on
Sometimes the journey you have to undertake is harder than booking a ticket, packing a backpack and taking off. Sometimes the journey takes place in your own living room. It is a journey you take within yourself.
No country in the world is as rich as the voyage you take inside yourself. For all that, you discover outside of you, there is as much to discover within you.
In these tough times where we are confined to our homes and the entire world has come to a standstill, our travel does not halt. We travel to the deep recesses of our mind and the crevices of our soul. Slowing down does not mean stopping. Our mind is rich and we have the gift of imagination, which can take us wherever we desire.
Who says you need to leave your living room to live vicariously. All you need is an open mind and a positive outlook. The journey within you will take you to places, which are your own. You can ride rollercoasters or sway on a hammock. You can chase butterflies or dive with the narwhals. You can feel the softness of the sand on your feet or hear the loud gurgling of the river. Who can stop you?
Not the universe
Not even a virus
You have done many things this year - projects, assignments, interviews… a whirlwind of experience that every SCM student before you has carried with them, my self included.
But you have done one thing more. You have strived to create in hardship. You have kept a tiny little light alive in the pits of darkness that our times have produced. That is your victory, and you should wear it like a badge. The ability to endure and create through suffering is at the core of human survival.
I wish you the ability to live today for what it is, with little worry about tomorrow. Your efforts will not go unacknowledged, I assure you. Best of luck for your life ahead.
"Do not give up no matter what, always try just one more time & you will succeed.."
All the very best.
At the beginning of 2020, things were looking quite bright and upwards. But come April, everything changed. What was supposed to be one of the best years for our company turned out to be the most challenging one. The year has taught me many things, but one thing I have personally learned from the past year is, “never focus on uncertainties, rather focus on what’s in hand and how we can make it better.”
At the moment, most of you must be worried because you didn’t get to experience what a regular batch does in SCM, but for me, you have done something which no other previous batch has done. It is remarkable in every sense. This was a journey we all had to take and trust me you will come out of it in flying colors. This experience will go a long way with you and it makes you unique in every sense.
Your life won’t be defined by the year gone by, but by many years to come. Wishing you all the success…
YOU ARE THE CHOSEN ONES….THE FOURTH WILL DEFINITELY BE WITH YOU….
Dear Class of 21, you’ve made history by being this epic online batch in a year that defied all known norms. Just for that, you will be unforgettable. But I will also remember your hard work, your ability to stay strong under pressure, and the fact you always greeted my classes with joy and enthusiasm which helped make my year that much brighter. Yes and some of you wrote some great lines of copy as well. As you go out into the world all I can say is - Believe in yourself no matter what comes your way. You are stronger than you think and smarter than you know.
All the Best.