Teacher Feature: Hina Agarwalla, the agent of change
Most teachers go above and beyond the call of duty, and Mrs Agarwalla is no exception. Read on to learn about our English as an Additional Language (EAL) Teacher and Class Advisor’s passions and what drives her to go the extra mile.
Mrs Agarwalla was born and raised in the vibrant city of Karachi, Pakistan – a city she describes as being prodigious, multicultural and bustling with resilient people. Growing up, she spent most of her teenage years volunteering for an international NGO. She was voted the chairperson of the NGO’s youth committee and this profound experience ignited a fire that drives her passion to bring about change in her context. She still exudes that passion in everything she does. During her teenage years, she organized various events for youth intending to raise awareness about important issues and later even assisted the principal of the school in implementing meaningful strategies which helped raise the level of the NGOs school.
She attended the University of Karachi where she studied Psychology, English Literature and Education and graduated at the age of nineteen with a Bachelor in Arts. She is currently doing her Masters in Education from the University of Sheffield and plans to do her PhD thereafter. Besides volunteering, she loves reading, travelling, music, studying architecture and is keen on acquiring in-depth knowledge about educational psychology because it helps her understand the complexities of the human mind and become a better educator.
Recently, she co-authored an article titled ‘Global teachers as global learners: Intercultural teacher training in international setting’ which was published in the London Review of Education, which is a peer-reviewed journal.
She moved to Switzerland thirteen years ago and confesses her unconditional love for Confoederatio Helvetica. “Having travelled around the world in my quest to explore its natural and cultural beauty, it is always a privilege and source of comfort to come back home to Switzerland, whose mesmerizing beauty and exemplary democratic values I adore the most.’
Mrs Agarwalla has been teaching for sixteen years, and her passion for making a difference through education has not faded a bit. She joined Institut Montana four years ago and admits: “What I admire the most about Institut Montana, is its cultural diversity in all its grandeur. It is integral for the world around us to experience diversity in all its glory so that we can learn to appreciate our unique differences and repudiate the very idea of discrimination in all its forms.’ Teaching helps her foster respect, appreciation and understanding of various cultures, and she takes great pride in promoting critical thinking skills and intercultural understanding through her interactions with students. “Education is key to fighting fascism at its grassroots level. If we fail to teach that in schools, we fail the society which, after all, is a reflection of our education system.” asserts Mrs Agarwalla.
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