The Telegraph
| Thursday, September 5, 2013 |


Smile please

News, views and trivia straight from schools and colleges

The first time I heard about the Amchi programme from my seniors on this mission, I knew right away that I wanted to be a part of it. Amchi was founded by one of our seniors and its main aim is to reach out to the people of Ladakh and provide proper oral healthcare services, which they do not have access to due to the remoteness of their location.

During the weeks and months leading up to our departure for Ladakh, we worked up a sweat running after companies for sponsorship, organising fund raising events, gathering instruments and materials, had meeting after meeting to ensure that everything was in order, and lost lots of sleep in the process.

Through our collaboration with the European Dental Students' Association in this effort, we got the opportunity to work with some of the most wonderful individuals I have been lucky enough to meet.

When we finally reached Ladakh, we were welcomed with open arms. The children in the schools we visited greeted us with immense enthusiasm and affection, and touched our hearts with their warm smiles. We taught them how to maintain oral hygiene and provided treatment for any oral ailment. In return, they taught us a great deal about compassion, humility and gratitude.

I can say with conviction that we needed the people of that area just as much as they needed us. I have come back from this experience a changed person; I have learned to struggle and strive through every hardship to achieve my goals, I have learned to truly care for others, I have learned leadership and teamwork, I have learned integrity, but most of all I have learnt what humanity is. Amchi has served as the fundamental step toward making a difference in the world. Through all the lessons I learned during my experience with Amchi, I hope to make the world a brighter place, one smile at a time.

Samra Khalid, intern, Manipal College of Dental Sciences, Manipal University



Google men

American multinational Google Inc launched the Google Student Ambassador programme to search for talent, and to make its latest products available among students. This year, around 1,750 candidates from 200 educational institutions across India vied for the coveted Google Student Ambassador (GSA) title for the academic session 2013-14. So it was an honour to be two of those selected after clearing the aptitude test and an interview.

Recently, we attended the Google India Community Summit 2013 in Goa, which was organised by the Google Country Outreach team. The summit brought together Google Business Group (GBG) managers, Google Developer Group (GDG) managers and Google student ambassadors (GSAs) from across India for an intensive four-day training programme on community management, best practice sharing and product knowledge. Being GSAs for a year will give us the opportunity to participate in various such Google training sessions that are held in 2013-14. The current summit has encouraged us to start work on our first project 'Vanity URL to LPU on G+ Page'.

Sunil Rao, Google Country Head-Outreach Programs, who invited us to the summit, said: "In today's fast changing technology setting, programmes that bridge gap between what is taught in colleges and what is sought by industry are important. Google facilitates one such partnership through its Google Student Ambassador (GSA) program me where we partner with academia to promote the use of technology."

Our college is rather proud of us and we have decided to organise various Google sponsored programs such as apps developing competition and other technical events on campus.

Khageshwar Ijardar and Bishal Sapkota, BTech, CSE programme, Lovely Professional University