Compiled by Pirah Aijaz
You might think that doing the same thing day in and day out, can be tedious.. but not when you are a dedicated person like Nadira Aijaz who had a passion for teaching.
Nadira is a retired Associate Professor with more than 30 years of experience in the field of education. While a lot of people switch professions and leave jobs, this lady worked for 30 years in the same sector and the same Institute (a Government College for Women), which goes to show her focus and dedication.
From the first day of the appointment, she was revered by her students and colleagues. As a matter of fact, she even earned an honor as an ‘all-time favorite teacher and colleague’ because of her polite and humble nature.
Nadira Aijaz is the epitome of the ordinary, doing the extraordinary. She raised three children while living in a joint family system for years. The story of how, she juggled multiple roles and stayed true to each one, inspired our Fempreneur Team so much that we thought, we had to learn more about her journey.
Here are some snippets, to inspire you:
From childhood to adulthood, how did life unfold for you?
I belong to an educated, close-knit family, my parents were cousins (my husband also happens to be my cousin). My father was a Principal of a Government Institute. When I was 8 years old, he passed away. Since then, my Uncle supported us in every matter of our lives. Among other siblings, I was the most passionate about my studies and I had a dream of becoming a doctor but due to the financial crises, I was unable to make this dream, a reality. Later, I did Masters in Political Science because I wanted to support my family in their hard times.
How did you get started in your career in the Education sector?
When I was in the final year of my Masters, I started teaching at a Public School, in Jacobabad, where I worked for 1.5 years. I wanted to continue but I got married, in between. My husband was very supportive and encouraged me to continue teaching. So I taught at a Private School for some time, till my 3 decades journey began, teaching in the Government Women’s College, at Moosa Lane, Liyari. In a nutshell, that’s how my career in the Education sector rolled out.
What motivated you to become a Lecturer/Associate Professor?
During my childhood, I was so inspired by my father who also worked as a Teacher and Principal. His qualities and passion always pushed me to do something like him. As I couldn’t afford to pursue a career in Medicine, I settled for the next best thing – I chose to become a Lecturer ultimately.
You have more than 30 years of experience in the field of Education. Please tell us what you enjoyed the most while teaching.
I have spent more than 30 years in the field of Education and worked as a School teacher, Lecturer, Associate Professor, Acting Principal, and also a DDO (Drawing and Disbursing Officer). What made ‘teaching’ particularly enjoyable for me was the strong connection that would come about, between me and my students
Raising kids on your own and managing a professional life is very difficult. How did you strike a balance?
It was hard to manage both while living in a joint family for the first eight years, of married life. Due to a lack of resources, raising three kids, fulfilling their responsibilities, and helping them in their studies was really hectic. But being a passionate woman and a responsible mother, I had no other choice. Throughout the journey, my husband helped and supported me a lot as he looked after the children when I went to College. And when I returned back to home, he left for his office. That’s how we managed, especially after we started living separately.
What achievements are you most proud of?
I wanted to educate my children and didn’t want them to sacrifice their wishes, as I had to, during my childhood due to a lack of financial resources. When I reflect back on how I ended up raising them, I always feel proud of the fact that
I managed to keep this promise to myself.
Who was your strongest support, and who are you most thankful to?
I am most thankful to Almighty Allah. Then, they were a few people who supported me, unconditionally, throughout my career, like my Mother who prayed for me, my paternal Uncle who helped us in all matters of life including education, and my husband who acted like my Pillar.
What were some of the important lessons you learned over the years?
The lessons I learned in my career life were: to be accountable for your profession; and to respect others. I have always tried to live by these lessons to the best of my ability
What is good advice to give to young girls?
Work hard and be honest with your profession. Love humanity!