Sunday, February 2, 2014

It's time to get to know India!

In only four days from now, I will be on my way to the airport to start my CSC assignment in Ludhiana, Punjab, India. For those of you who have never heard of this city before (like myself when I got the invitation), I have attached a screenshot from Google Maps.

With the excitement at an all-time high now, I would like to use this blog to keep you up to date about my adventure as well as share some pictures as I have promised everyone.

First of all, why Ludhiana? Few years ago, IBM has established a program called Corporate Service Corps (Link)  to send IBMers on pro bono engagements all over the world. On one hand, it brings expertise to help communities solve their problems, but also provides an opportunity to experience a wholly different environment - in terms of geography, culture, business.

Needless to mention that you don't want to miss out on this opportunity, so I applied right away.  Few months later, I received my admission (which I still consider more a matter of luck than of skill, especially in my case), which was a surprise and an honor for me. Then, in October, I received my assignment - Ludhiana, Punjab, India. I have never been to India, so I was excited by the opportunity to discover the "world's largest democracy".

A few weeks ago, we have received our project assignment. With two colleagues from France and Romania, I will be working at the Punjab Agricultural Unviersity (PAU), which is considered as one of the best universities in Asia. We will be developing a student information system to replace the existing paper-based system.

The project is exciting for two reasons (I know that as a consultant, I should provide three, but I will make an exception this time). For one, the university's slogan "... our challenge is to food and clothe" - represents two important issues of modern India. On the other hand, not that long ago, I used to be a student myself, and remembering my own information system, I am thrilled to help build a good one for the PAU.

Only few more days in Germany, and then exciting times ahead!

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