In August 2023, a remarkable convergence of educational minds unfolded in Varanasi as the Round Square Conference 2023 took center stage. The event, hosted by Sunbeam School Lahartara, gathered delegates from 250+ schools, including a spirited cohort of six representatives from SAI International. The conference seamlessly interwove a tapestry of workshops and experiences under the banner of this year's guiding theme: Dream, Believe & Achieve.
The inaugural festivities, graced by influential luminaries, showcased captivating theatrical performances that illuminated the qualities of leadership within children. A distinctive touch was added by the junior segment, ingeniously personifying the "Round Square Discoveries" through endearing mascots. It was under the gracious declaration of Ms. Rajbir Sandhu, the Round Square Schools Support Director of South Asia and Gulf Region, that the conference's curtains officially rose. A standout workshop titled "Leadership Through the Reflective Prism," led by Mr. Pratish Nair, Managing Director & Co-Founder of the Prahlad Kakkar School of Branding & Entrepreneurship, further enriched the intellectual fabric of the gathering.
The conference's narrative ventured into ecological leadership with a touch of artistic introspection. The enthralling performance of "Taming of the Wild" by Doll's Theatre, Kolkata, held the audience captive and paved the way for contemplative dialogues on individual identity and authenticity.
As the days unfurled, the conference participants embarked on a journey that transcended chronological markers. The sacred site of Sarnath, resonating with Buddha's legacy, stirred their curiosity on the third day. The time-worn edifices, despite their age of seventeen centuries, bore witness to a rich historical tapestry. Amid these hallowed grounds, the group absorbed profound insights from the sagacious PROF. (DR.) Wangchuk Dorjee Negi, Vice Chancellor of the Central Institute for Higher Tibetan Studies. His lessons distilled the essence of a simpler life, resonating deeply within each attendee. Subsequently, Mr. Tenzin Tsundue, a Tibetan writer and activist, illuminated the struggles of refugees and shared his personal life journey, kindling a fervent dialogue. With these transformative conversations, the keynote sessions gracefully gave way to a visit to the library, an endeavor to further enrich their horizons.
Engaging Barazas sessions kindled enlightening conversations, followed by an illuminating lecture by Mr. Mukherjee P. titled "How to See a City Through Its Spaces," which explored avenues of diverse urban perspectives. Mr. Dibyendu Tarafder, an eminent Kathakali Exponent and Storyteller, wrapped up the day with an engaging session on "Leadership through Role Play Rubrics," leaving an indelible mark with his unique approach to leadership.
Day 4 commenced with the enlightening seminar by Dr. Kannan Gireesh on "Leadership Science Behind Inspiring Minds," shedding fresh light on the impact of leadership on the youth. A subsequent Baraza session led to a discussion on the "Seven Habits of Highly Successful Teens." Afternoon sessions introduced participants to engaging Special Interest Group Contemplations, spanning realms like "Film Your Emotions" (Film Making), "Map Your Image" (Art), and "Theatre Role Play," fostering creativity and self-expression. "Varanasi Haat" showcased local culture, while Ishara Puppet Theatre's "Image of Truth" highlighted inclusive leadership. The day culminated in a vibrant Social Night, fostering connections and camaraderie amidst the backdrop of leadership wisdom and artistic expression.
On the conference's final day, a crescendo of promises and potentials resonated as buses journeyed to Sunbeam School, Lahartara, for the Round Square Event. The day's highlight was the Artistic Function Ideation, featuring captivating presentations from various schools. Hailing from a region steeped in cultural opulence, SAI International paid homage to Lord Jagannath through a heartfelt rendition of 'Bande Utkal Janani,' an anthem celebrating Utkala's heritage. With fruitful deliberations and insights aplenty, the conference reached its conclusion, bidding adieu with enriched minds, cultural appreciation, and a profound awareness of each participant's leadership potential. As they departed aboard a Bhubaneswar-bound flight, their contented smiles bore testimony to the deep satisfaction they carried within.