Software Engineer Turned Educationalist — An Inspirational Story

4 minutes

One day, two monks were sitting outside, and they were watching a flag blowing in the breeze. And they began to argue about what exactly was moving.

One argued that the flag is what is moving. “It’s obvious. The flag is waving,” he said.

The other disagreed. “Well, the flag is only moving because the wind is moving. If there were no wind, the flag would just hang there. So it’s obvious, the wind is what’s moving, not the flag.”

During this argument, another monk, who was also a Zen master, passed by. They decided to ask him to settle the problem for them.

They told him the problem, and each explained why he thought whether the wind or flag was moving. So they asked him, which one was correct?

The master said, “Not the wind, not the flag; the mind is moving.”

Meet Aparna Athreya, a software engineer by qualification and now she has founded the Kid and Parent Foundation. Aparna talks to YourDOST about the transformation from working in the software industry to the World of psychology and development.

Here’s her story: 

A dreamer and storyteller from the word go, I was pulled up in school ever so often to explain myself for doing this and that. So my art for storytelling, even if I was telling the truth, started from way back then!   


So why did I do engineering in the first place? Engineering came as a natural progression to my school education. Back then, I was so busy having fun, when it came to “real” stuff, I just did what everyone else was doing.  


Engineers or doctors, it was for one and all. I got the good grades and stepped into the highly respected hall of engineering fame. I must say, the fun and good cheer continued thereafter too.  So, engineering came without making it a major decision-making occasion.


My work in development and storytelling started even while I worked in the software industry, where I volunteered across various CSR projects and got the opportunity to work with children.  

Then my children came along to firm up my belief that I need to create a development-centric organization.  Then step by step, Kid and Parent Foundation began its work; with children, parents and corporates and today we are who we are.


Working in the software industry has been one of the most formative experiences for me as an adult. I have had the opportunity to work with some of the most brilliant thinkers and socially responsible individuals in my career.  

I think the most important skills to be part of this industry are passion, commitment, and compassion. With passion comes the ability to be curious to learn and discover. With commitment comes grit and perseverance to make a difference. With compassion, one can truly make a difference in the lives of others.



But I think being mindful is the first step towards awareness of ourselves and with that will come the ability to impart well-being and happiness to others.

Every time I speak to somebody who wants to enter the field of education and development, I tell them that the mantra to success is to “Never let the child in you grow up”.  



Being curious to discover like children, being able to forgive oneself and move on and being ever-present to the current moment is the reason why children are boundless in their energy and joy.  I think anyone who nurtures the child in them will find success and happiness.

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