Today's workers are highly educated even at floor levels
It was a unique PhD viva-voce at the management faculty of
the University of Pune recently where the student appeared to be at least 20 years
older than his guide and examiners. And, it was certainly not the first
degree acquired by 82 year old Moreshwar Abhyankar. He has indeed a string of degrees
and diplomas to his credit, including masters in arts, business administration,
LLB, MMS and diplomas in journalism and social work.
It took Abhyankar nine years to complete the Ph.D on the subject Impact of training
interventions on the development and competencies of employees in private sector
units in Pune. Abhyankar, who retired as zonal director of Union labour ministrys
workers education scheme in 1988, chose this particular topic for his thesis because
of his teaching experience of over 50 years. During my experience in training and
teaching, I often wondered if the training programmes designed and conducted by
the companies helped these employees at practical level.
During a seminar on the subject, he asked expert Pratibha Joshi whether workers
found the training useful. That’s when Joshi, who subsequently became my guide,
suggested that I take up the research, he said. Initially, I was skeptical considering
my age and health, but later took it as a challenge.
Not only Abhyankar surmounted the age related health problems, he also braved other
physiological challenges that confronted him after meeting with an accident in 2006.
I converted these challenges into opportunities and faced them bravely. He said.
Talking about how he kept himself updated with changing trends in the field of management,
Abhyankar said, Today's workers are highly educated even at floor levels. They have
the passion to prove themselves. The various training programmes over the years
and interaction with the trainees helped me to keep myself updated.
Abhyankars guide Pratibha Joshi said, even when the medical issues concerning Abhyankars
health came in his way, he maintained the tempo throughout. He kept reading books
and material pertaining to his subject when he met with the accident and during
She added: He was completely independent. Despite physical problems he himself went
for the surveys, interviews and research.
When asked what kept him going during his almost a decade long study, he said, I
was halfway through my research work when I met with an accident; I was gripped
by doubts for a moment but regained confidence and kept a positive attitude till
the end. The research kept me busy and made me feel healthy. I got immense support
from my wife.
About his future projects, Abhyankar said, I plan to work with Infosys on the same
lines as my Ph.D as their training policies are different.
Courtesy: Times of India