The journey that made me a Boarding School Master

AS Huidrom *

"If you can't fly then run, if you can't run then walk, if you can't walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward." Martin Luther King Jr.

The North East of India is like the forbidden paradise in the country. It is the Amazon of the sub- continent watered by the massive perennial river called the Brahmaputra and its tributaries. Hailing from this part of the world, Manipur, my love for this land is beyond description.

I had my school education in a boarding school, Birla Vidya Mandir (Member school of IPSC Indian Public School Conference) situated in Nainital, UP now in UttaraKhand. I was admitted under the scheme ALL INDIA MERIT SCHOLARSHIP, approved to study in the Residential Public School by Ministry of Human Resources, Govt. of India.

During my schooling, I desired that my part of the world should have a school like that wherein a person is taught not just subject but life skills as well. The boarding school nurtured my physical and mental faculties. I was groomed into becoming a person who can influence people and create impact which is immeasurable.

A boarding school is a place where there are many facilities and unparalleled opportunities both for the students and Housemasters'. I am very thankful to my Alma Matter, Birla Vidya Mandir, Nainital for the strong base for profession and life which formed a solid foundation beneath my feet. What I am today is because of my all Guruji of the school. My heartfelt gratitude to all of them.

After my college and University studies, I decided to serve as a teacher as that is where I felt I can influence the people of my land. Being a teacher was exciting and I was having the innate passion to walk an extra mile in whatever I do. But working in a day school become tiresome as one could not go beyond a limit.

I wanted to do beyond that as I wanted to groom the boys and girls of my land into individuals who can make an impact beyond the boundaries of the North East. Therefore, I resigned though it was a government position and joined a boarding school, Donyi Polo Vidya Bhawan, Itanagar (Member of IPSC) in Arunachal Pradesh.

I was the Chief Co-coordinator of the 57th Annual Session of Public Schools' Principals Conference hosted Donyi Polo Vidya Bhawan (Member of IPSC),Itanagar, Arunachal Pradesh. There I met our beloved and learned former Principal Shree SK Guptaji and inspired me to do better and better in my life.

Though the job was a private one, I had the quenching satisfaction which could not be granted by the day school. Here, I was giving my all as a boarding school master in every form- as a Physics teacher, as a tutor, on the sports field, in the dining hall and everywhere.

I was actually a part of every child's life on the campus. Rather than just teaching them values, I was trying to be an example to them in everything I do as I believe that students learn better by observing than by merely listening to what you have got to say.

One of my students at the school served as the Chief Minister of the state after he grew up. Some of them are in administrative services (IRS and IAS), Entrepreneurs, Engineers and doctors and social workers.

My life as a boarding school teacher took a greater and a brighter turn when The Assam Valley School, a mammoth boarding school opened in the middle of the tea gardens in Assam in 90s.. I was enthusiastic to join the school as it was established in my part of the land. I knew I can do more in this gigantic institution.

It is now more than three decades and I feel that I can still do more as a boarding school master in this institution. I always gave more than usual to whatever role I was given to play-Head of admissions, Head of department, Head of E- learning, Round Square representative, Tennis and hockey coach etc.

As a Physics teacher, I desired to enlighten the students on how science has advanced and has made man's life easier. As most of the students were first generation learners, I had to really make them realise the influence of Physics in human's lives in various forms. I walked an additional mile by taking students every year to NASA in the USA.

Student have workshops at JF Kennedy space centre, Florida and space camp at Johnson Space at Huston, USA wherein they learn some aspects of Space Science. The trekking and camping expedition in Darjeeling, Bhutan and North East taught me the social behaviour of the students outside four walls of the classroom.

I also served the school as a Round Square Representative. One knows the kind of influence Round Square has on the student body. International Conferences in Singapore, presentation of students' engagement in Aiglon College, Switzerland and South Africa engages the students in discovery framework of Round Square Pillars which eventually will impact on their lives.

The greater role as a boarding school teacher I played is on the pastoral front. The pastoral care is the essence of a boarding school and that is where one can create a phenomenal impact as a boarding school master. The key areas that work in a boarding school as nature and nurture.

I loved passionately in nourishing students in these aspects and serving as a Housemaster, It is an indescribable feeling to experience the kind of connection I enjoy with students in the boarding house. This where the real nature of the students are witness- the personal likes and dislikes, the past joys and pains, the passion they have, the challenges they have met in life, the agony because they have lost a loved one, the kind of person they long to be, and the like.

As a housemaster, I am in that position like a potter wherein I can mould them. I become more than a mere teacher and more than a parent when I am in that shoes of the housemaster. One must have that burning passion to be in that position wherein a student finds one trustworthy to open up his heart and expose himself confiding in the one everything about himself.

Every year students with different temperaments enter the campus and every student is a unique challenge for me as the housemaster. No matter how much difficult it may be to make a gentleman out of that boy, I do still find a way to make a fine person who would serve as a ray of hope to the planet out of him. After becoming the Senior Master for the boys department, I am glad to leave a legacy behind because when I retire the student community will continue to have passionate housemaster to nurture them.

Learning is a continuous process and always have the passion to learn from my mentors and one of them is Dr Vidhukesh Vimal, Headmaster of The Assam Valley School. I buy his beautiful ideas and some of the proven time tested effective practices from him and applies in our day-to-day functioning of the school. My heartfelt and sincere gratitude to him and other mentors.

The greatest satisfaction lies when graduated students enter the threshold of the campus not as a student but as a person who is in service of the human civilization in one or other constructive way- an IAS officer, IRS, a Chief Minister of a state, an entrepreneur, a law and enforcement officer, a defense officer, a pilot and the like.

That very moment of seeing the once-upon-a-time kid standing in front of me as a responsible adult who is greater than his teacher in every aspect immediately makes me feel proud of my profession as the boarding school housemaster.

To me every single individual is a living success story and I have the joy of being a character in their life's story as I was the child's potter, a sculptor or his maker in a way. This is the most enjoyable and satisfactory journey as the Boarding School master.

* AS Huidrom wrote this article for The Sangai Express
The writer is Senior Master, The Assam Valley School and is an alumnus of Birla Vidya Mandir, Nainital.
This article was webcasted on October 05 2020 .

* Comments posted by users in this discussion thread and other parts of this site are opinions of the individuals posting them (whose user ID is displayed alongside) and not the views of We strongly recommend that users exercise responsibility, sensitivity and caution over language while writing your opinions which will be seen and read by other users. Please read a complete Guideline on using comments on this website.

  • Scientist of Manipur: Raghumani Ningthoujam
  • Violence in Manipur 2023-2024 : Timeline
  • Chilli Chicken Delivers a Flavorful Punch
  • International Day of Yoga 2024
  • Antimicrobial Resistance: Top 10 health threat
  • Indo-Naga Talks (From 2012) :: Timeline
  • Taste vs Health
  • Fiasco of UGC-NET, NEET 2024
  • From NEET to NET: It's time to fix NTA
  • Great June Uprising @Kekrupat #1 : Gallery
  • Ema Panthoibi Phijol Hongba at Mandalay
  • Proposed Palm Plantation behind Jiri violence?
  • 'Why Impose War on Us'
  • Why workers most affected by scorching heat?
  • Coup of 2021 not the only push factor
  • Last chance not to fall from grace
  • Ibudhou Cheng Hongba #1 : Gallery
  • Kind attention 'Your Lordship' CJ of India
  • 'Opposition-less Govt in Nagaland is rhetoric'
  • Xorai - Assam's cultural symbol
  • Natural ways to lighten dark underarms
  • Is Delhi doing the right thing ?
  • Set the priorities right
  • Ima Keithel flood- May 30 #3 : Gallery
  • Modi's arduous journey & fate of Naga peace
  • Autism: Why fit in, when you can stand out?
  • Bloodstained Masquerade :: Poem
  • Dharamvir Singh: Forgotten hero of TV
  • What is keeping the clash going on ?
  • Warning of a coming politico-military storm
  • Birth Centenary of Jananeta Irabat, 1996 : #6
  • The Great June 18 Uprising : Timeline
  • The Great June 18 Uprising : Gallery
  • Are we on track to end AIDS by 2030 ?
  • 3 writers from Manipur for Sahitya Akademi
  • Manipur's traffic, parking: A big nuisance
  • Career in elderly care
  • Keeping the folks under a state of confusion
  • Nothing neat about NEET
  • Aid to relief camps @ Jiribam : Gallery
  • Id Festival- 'Id-Ul-Azha' :: Book
  • World Day to Combat Desertification 2024
  • NDPP did not lose LS due to local problem
  • RSS chief says, priority Manipur
  • What if not IIT ?
  • Waiting for a response from the PM
  • The test of leadership failed
  • Descent of Radha-Krishna #35: Download
  • Gastronomy tourism in Manipur : Gallery
  • Triathlon : Manipur bag 6 medals (3 gold)
  • Illegal immigrants/fugitives from Myanmar
  • Eid-ul-Adha: Embracing sacrifice
  • A solution to Meitei-Kuki-Zo conflict
  • The Power of Poppy - 35 :: Poem
  • Scientist of Manipur: R K Brojen Singh
  • Brief sketch on General Balaram Sougaijamba
  • Non-violent for peaceful, mutual co-existence
  • Homeless person ..alcoholism & defeated TB
  • Cancer on rise among young adults
  • Defending, fighting for Idea of Manipur
  • From partiality to complicity
  • Bike Rally - Sekmai to Kangla : Gallery
  • 'Modi must announce finality of Naga pacts'
  • Gliding over Brahmaputra
  • Question leaks cause stress among student
  • Home remedies for prickly heat
  • After IIT, AIIMS it is now IIM
  • Stealing spotlight from Manipur crisis
  • Tarpon chaklen katpa @ Andro #2 : Gallery
  • Strongly condemns violence in Jiribam
  • Lessons from outcome of LS election
  • Tumcho releases "Goodness of God"
  • Right diagnostic for antimicrobial resistance
  • 12th June is World Day against Child Labour
  • Hands of geo-politics ?
  • The row over NEET-2014
  • 2nd Annual Art Exhibition #1 : Gallery
  • Chilli Chicken: Film Spotlighting NE in B'lore
  • Committee of Narcotics Anonymous - Imphal
  • The Power of Meditation
  • Oceans as a career choice
  • Getting more and more audacious
  • A test of leadership
  • Education Fair @Imphal #2 : Gallery
  • Gifting two seats to Cong
  • Voters empowered democracy
  • Postcards from Meghalaya premieres
  • Milk : Essential nutrient for a healthy body
  • Failing in competitive exam not end of world
  • Delhi : A mere spectator
  • Abandoning Jiribam
  • Birth Centenary of Jananeta Irabat, 1996 : #5
  • Ima Keithel flood- May 30 #2 : Gallery
  • Mainstream in Shoes of Alternative
  • Protect the medicines that protect us
  • Lets take action for our land & our future
  • Democracy and independent media
  • Agenda at work to shut Western Gate
  • Keeping Manipur on the boil
  • Descent of Radha-Krishna #34: Download
  • The Enigmatic Journey of 'Laikhutshangbi'
  • Individual and the Social
  • An Ardent Appeal to All Concerns
  • Condemnation of Attack & Govt Inaction
  • The Power of Poppy - 34 :: Poem
  • Scientist of Manipur: Laishram Shanta
  • Alien fishes spotted in Manipur's rivers
  • Training on mushroom at Langthabal
  • Digital avatars or deepfakes ?
  • 7th June is the World Food Safety Day
  • How to prepare for UPSC after 10th ?
  • The Jiri violence
  • Beginning of a new vote culture ?
  • Bimol Akoijam (Cong) wins Inner PC : Gallery
  • BJP, NPF & other NDA pay heavy price
  • Nature is one of greatest blessings of God
  • Plantation drive in Tripura, Assam & Manipur
  • Summer beauty
  • Environment conservation & over-exploitation
  • Is Modi cut out for leading a coalition ?
  • 'Ishanou' Selection @ Cannes #2: Gallery
  • Scholarship for Johnstone Hr Sec students
  • 1st foundation day of Interfaith Forum
  • World Environment Day: Our land, our future
  • Indonesia stronger anti-tobacco measures
  • Navigating a fragile Myanmar: India's policy
  • New breed entering electoral politics
  • The road to formation of new govt
  • International Dance Day #1 : Gallery
  • Matchbox marketing mantra
  • Stop harming nature :: Poem
  • Saving for oneself & the Nation
  • Model United Nations (MUN) conducted
  • Tobacco: Threat to health & environment
  • Candidate from ruling party biting the dust
  • The verdict
  • Birth Centenary of Jananeta Irabat, 1996 : #4
  • Imphal valley districts flooded #3 : Gallery
  • Navigating Remal amidst Manipur conflict
  • We are #GenerationRestoration
  • Intl Day of Innocent Children Victims
  • Apparel Industry Skills & Innovation CoE
  • What's in a cyclone's name ?
  • Ongoing clash, the floods, the losses
  • Exit poll predictions
  • Descent of Radha-Krishna #33: Download
  • Evading flood & rethinking urbanization
  • Manipur Flood: Health Advisory
  • Onus on civil bodies to ensure NNPG unity
  • Rats also cause flood
  • Benefits of JEE Main mock tests
  • People have spoken, now the results
  • The fury of Remal
  • Ima Keithel flood- May 30 #1 : Gallery
  • The flood in our Stars
  • The Power of Poppy - 33 :: Poem
  • 'Group of people misrepresented themselves'
  • EV industry and career options
  • Scientist of Manipur: Chandrakant Aribam
  • Candy flavoured traps to hook next Gen
  • Commemorate Naga Plesbicite Day 1951 #2
  • Tobacco affects health & environment too
  • Jio extend validity for Customer in Manipur
  • Students must learn about AI irrespective
  • As vote count day approaches : Floods
  • Imphal valley districts flooded #2 : Gallery
  • Flooded : Sacrifice of Yairipok's Maiden
  • World No Tobacco Day 2024
  • Chandam Rishikanta wins NPC Nat'l C'ship
  • Flood: Helpline numbers for emergency
  • Battling body odour ?
  • Floods : Not entirely natural phenomena
  • PM Modi's purpose
  • Imphal valley districts flooded #1 : Gallery
  • June Calendar for Year 2024 : Tools
  • Flood: Control Rooms & Helpline numbers
  • Economic impact of ongoing conflict
  • Army Recruitment Rally for Manipur
  • Cut deficit, boom likely
  • Are Gods angry ? Wake up call for Manipur
  • Beating of the Retreat #2 : Gallery
  • We did Overcome: Mayhem of Month of May
  • Training on mushroom at Potshagbam
  • Famous female Mathematicians in India
  • Disinformation campaign thengnare
  • Human trafficking puts humanity to shame
  • Sky opens up in all its fury
  • Licypriya meets Italy PM & Pope Francis
  • HSLC (Class X) 2024 : Full Result
  • HSLC 2024 : Important Info & Grading System
  • HSLC 2024 : Pass % : Private Schools
  • HSLC 2024 : Pass % : Aided Schools
  • HSLC 2024 : Pass % : Govt Schools
  • HSLC 2024 : Statistical Abstract
  • HSLC 2024 : Comparative Statement
  • Combined Defence Services Exam 2024
  • Good show in Class X exams
  • Downplaying the crisis
  • Birth Centenary of Jananeta Irabat, 1996 : #3
  • Reviving Lamphelpat : Conservation : Gallery
  • Commemorate Naga Plesbicite Day 1951 #1
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Hojai
  • The Power of Poppy - 32 :: Poem
  • Insights from CUET-UG Counselling
  • International Day for Biological Diversity
  • Unseen force at work: Time to unravel it
  • Sheikh Hasina's revelation
  • The Vanishing Meitei Tribe
  • Building career in defence & strategic study
  • Why example of model code of conduct ?
  • Ownership of responsibility
  • Will pressure mount on key players in NE
  • How to save your foot after an accident
  • Children Camp @JNMDA Imphal #3 : Gallery
  • Education Fair @Imphal #1 : Gallery
  • Project Associate @ CSE, Assam Univ
  • Understanding schizophrenia
  • Advancement in Multi Objective Optimization
  • When will women in voter list increase ?
  • Making 2 plus 2 is equal to 5
  • Changing face of drug menace
  • Scientist of Manipur: Jayanta Manoharmayum
  • 25 yrs since Atal Vajpayee visit to RIMS
  • 4 Lakhs donated to support (L) Maipak Family
  • Clarification: Guwahati Meet on Humanitarian
  • Start UPSC prep after 12th for success
  • Tips to avoid melting makeup in summer
  • Giving a big solid push to ST demand
  • Time to come clean
  • Sajibu Cheiraoba: 1 occasion, 2 narratives #3
  • Khongjom Day @Khebaching #2 : Gallery
  • 'Ishanou' Selection @ Cannes #1: Gallery
  • Birth Centenary of Jananeta Irabat, 1996 : #2
  • Scientist of Manipur: Amom Ruhikanta
  • Preserving Thang-Ta :: Rare Photos
  • Regarding Human Rights Situation in Manipur
  • Malemnganbi Laishram : Science Topper
  • Featured Front Page Photo 2024 #2: Gallery
  • Thokchom Sheityajit : Arts Topper
  • Aiena Naorem : Commerce Topper
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024 : Science Topper
  • HSE 2024 : Subject Pass Percentage
  • HSE 2024 : District Pass Percentage
  • HSE 2024 : Candidates with Highest Marks
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024: Science Full Result
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024: Arts Full Result
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024: Commerce Result
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024 : Arts Topper
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024 : Commerce Topper
  • Aftermath of ferocious hailstorm #1 : Gallery
  • Radio E-pao: Manipuri Film OST (130+ song)
  • Nupi Landa Thaunaphabishing : Full Book
  • A ferocious hailstorm @Imphal : Gallery
  • '365 Days of Chin-Kuki Aggression' : Gallery
  • National Science Teacher workshop
  • Sajibu Cheiraoba Chak Katpa #2 : Gallery
  • Scientists of Manipur : Ngangkham Nimai
  • GHOST of PEACE :: Download Booklet
  • List of Kings of Manipur: 33 - 1984 AD