Teaching profession is still considered one of the few noble professions, in spite of the challenges offered by many new generation jobs; courtesy emergence of new industries and change in human demands and wants. The metamorphosis in career development draws most of the talent into professions other than teaching, owing to their lucrative packages.
However, teaching forms the backbone of a society and therefore it should try not only to draw the best minds around, but also attract those who are obsessed with the professional dividend it offers.
Money can definitely be the last in the pecking order of the professional dividends. Opines, Dr Athar Ali Khan, an eminent educationist from South Asia, "Teaching profession is not everybody's cup of tea as the inspiration is derived from aspirations other than money"! It is apt as the true teaching professional derives satisfaction from grooming the sharp minds into responsible and ethical professionals of tomorrow.
The fun and zeal derived from watching a goalless student transform into a focused graduate, ready to take the professional and social challenges head on gives complete solace and satisfaction that money cannot bring in.
All these makes it mandatory for the stakeholders to contribute in simple ways that can rekindle the kind of hope necessary for making this noble profession retain its sheen in a competitive career market.
The solution provider
The much needed facelift required for the noble profession would come from teaching mentors from different walks of life, who can not only act as role models for the rest of fraternity, but can also motivate the prospective career aspirant to consider teaching as their numero uno professional choice in order to contribute positively and holistically towards the societal, national and global building.
Teaching mentors ideally should not have any specific academic or professional credentials, rather they should volunteer on the basis of their passion, experience in different spheres of life, be it, the industry or society. These teaching mentors can complement the plain vanilla teachers to imbibe the nuances of practicalities of life, which forms the core of a perfect teaching and learning, along with the domain know-how. Dr Azzah Al Maskeri, Acting Dean of Ibra College of Technology, sums it up by adding, "Teachers should derive self motivation from their societal transformation they can create constructively for the human kind, which is billion times more satisfactory than other monetary and non-monetary benefits".
Dr Manishankar Chakraborty and Salim Al Rashdi special to Times of Oman