Speaking from the heart – An interview with Vandana, Managing Editor, IndiaStudyChannel.com.


Undoubtedly an inspiration to everyone, she is Tony's trouble shooter, her colleagues' best counsellor & mentor for many a newbie. Her performance index with reference to contributions in ISC and other blogs is quite commendable. At credit a rare milestone of contributing 1000 articles in ISC very recently which could be sure the favourite output of the search engines. She is none other than Vandana, the Managing Editor of ISC. In an exclusive interview with the author, she shares her thoughts. Read on...

A pen sketch of her

Vandana is the Managing Editor of the famous educational website IndiaStudyChannel.com, hugely credited for the success of the website. She is a content writer by passion, playing a sheet anchor role in the very success of ISC and its smooth functioning. The very confidence of Webmaster Tony John in this dynamic lady & her teammates of over 30 editors is reflected in his statement that he ignores visiting the ISC Forum regularly, as things are being handled very efficiently by them.

Quite amazing to know that it was after her academics and leaving a full time job that she started learning how to operate a computer. Now she has become a professional blogger and reached the height of becoming the Managing Editor of India's popular educational portal.



Initiating the quizzing process

When I contacted Vandana about the idea of publishing an article of her interview, she was quite reluctant (we do know how reticent she is!) and politely passed on the buck to Webmaster to get it confirmed whether it would be ideal to do so. We exchanged email communications with a questionnaire & some spontaneous questions via Gtalk. Till the last minute she was still reluctant to be in the spotlight, but finally agreed to have the interview published on ISC.

I wish to thank Webmaster Tony for entrusting me with the job of interviewing her on completion of 5 years as Managing Editor of IndiaStudyChannel.com. Here is the full text of the interview with Vandana by the author. Have a look at the cool, composed responses of this energetic lady to the questions posed by the author.

The quiz for a wizard


  1. Could you describe yourself?

    I am quite a chatterbox in the virtual world. I am a bit talkative at home too. Generally, though, overly sensitive, shy & a little awkward as far as social occasions in the real world are concerned. Would rather just sit in a corner out of sight than interact with others. Overall just an ordinary, simple person who is still a diehard fan of landline phones and postal mail!


  2. May I know about your educational and professional qualifications?

    After ICSE, I did my graduation and post graduation (this through correspondence) in Philosophy.


  3. In view of the awards you have won here, it would be interesting to know if you have won any major awards at the school or college level?

    Yes. Other than Merit Certificates in academics a couple of times, I won the Best Guide prize at school

    At the college level I was awarded the annual prize of 'The Most Widely Read Student of the Year'.


  4. Please can you tell us a little bit about your family?

    My father was a High Court advocate, my mother a homemaker. I am one of 4 sisters, all of us post graduates in different subjects. My older sisters are twins. One is a college Head of Department (History). The other completed post graduation in Social Psychology (she is a gold medallist too) and is working for an NGO on its feedback team. My younger sister, who did her post graduation in English Literature, is a freelance writer for NGOs and also does script & screenplay writing. Her writing talent was to be seen in the Marathi serial 'Indradhanush' and in episodes of the Hindi serials 'Hotel Kingston' and 'Jassi Jaissi Koi Nahin'. One day I hope to see her name in the credit rolls of a major film!


  5. Any interesting childhood experiences to share…

    During the school summer vacations, every morning my Dad would take all of us to the nearby public park for cycling. He would hire cycles from a nearby shop & hold on to the back of the cycle seat and get us to learn to balance. There were also regular trips to local fairs & lots of picnics at public gardens, complete with a full picnic set of 6 plates, bowls, spoons, glasses - the works! - and trips to a local beach too. Then there were the road trips to Goa and from there to his home town in Karnataka. The most vivid memory I have of these trips is swinging from the aerial roots of banyan trees when we stopped for meals. It was huge fun!



    Another interesting childhood experience I would like to share is going to the photo studio, all dressed up in special clothes on the occasion of a festival or a birthday.


  6. Do you have any other hobbies besides freelance writing & blogging?

    I love reading books, especially legal thrillers and mysteries, and food related magazines since I like trying out new recipes. I don't like making mundane things like rotis and dosas, but give me something new to try out and I will do it happily! During college days I developed this hobby of collecting quotes from books & magazines and greetings for various occasions - I've got 3 diaries full of these.
    One of my major hobbies since school days is to collect stamps .
    (Stamp collection by Vandana)

    And I have a small coins' collection too. That reminds me - a lot of stamps are still tucked away in nooks of shelves and between diary pages….

    Most of all, I love doing something creative, like a PPT or writing in greetings cards with a calligraphy pen. The certificate of creativity in our virtual gift shop is one of my handiworks, as is the image of the gold coin. I recently made an ISC bookmark and my sister suggested the words to put on it.


    (Image courtesy: Picture by Vandana)


  7. What are your favourite games and sports?

    Anything that is a fun activity is a sport for me - such as swinging from a banyan tree!! Seriously - have you tried it? Then there were the immensely fun things I did on a trip, such as zip lining across a lake, hanging precariously from a wire, and walking across nets & thin ropes like an army cadet. In the case of formal sports, I like badminton and table tennis. I loved taking part in the longer athletic events at school (400m & 800m), never mind if I was last or second last. I also recently revived my interest in swimming (learned at school) on vacation trips, if you can call vague breaststrokes in a shallow pool swimming! With regard to favourite sports in TV-watching, that would be Kabaddi. I became a huge fan ever since the first season. Cricket was what I watched the most initially, but the interest faded once India won the World Cup.


  8. Very interesting! Vandana is a swimmer too. By the way, What languages are you familiar with? How were you able to acquire proficiency in English language?

    You set me off into a fit of giggles at calling me a swimmer! Ok, ok….to the point….Other than English, I am familiar with Hindi and Marathi (though, frankly, poor in grammar in the latter two) and basic French which I learned from Std. 8 to Std.XII.



    If you see my Nursery class report card at age 3 yrs. & 8 months, though, it is clear I did not speak English initially! Full credit for proficiency in English goes to my parents. Nursery School report card
    Her School report card(Courtesy- Image by Vandana)

    Ever since I and my sisters could hold something, other than toys we were given books and encouraged to browse, read and learn meanings of words. We worked on school projects too on our own, reading magazines and newspapers, cutting & pasting pictures from old ones for projects. We even hunted for related info at local kabbadiwallas' shops which had stacks of old magazines. We were enrolled in a school which had very good English teachers, including one in middle school who was very very particular about our diction, explaining the precise pronunciations for each word. Due to constant reading, the vocabulary built up too and words now come naturally for both written and spoken English. One of my favourite past-times was to play Spell-O-Fun, a board game where we had to make words from seven letters from alphabet tiles. Even when I was doing my full time job, after work I used to come home and spend time playing it with my mother (who was an ace at it!). I would highly recommend word-building board games to anyone who wants to develop English skills. Keep a dictionary at hand, too, and make it your best friend. By the way, I am a little hazy about English grammar, which is why you may often see me posting queries in the Improve English forum category


  9. Some of your contributions and threads in ISC forum reveal a poetess in you. Have you published any poems so far?

    Are you kidding?! You set me off into splits again…. Me, a poetess?! Nonsense. Those would hardly be called as poems. They are just rhyming words strung together to convey what I want to say. Psst….a small confession here - whenever I posted those poems, I did have to look up the Net to find a rhyming word now & then when I couldn't get it quite right!


  10. Can we know about your work before you joined ISC?

    After my post graduation I took up work as a tele-caller with a C.A. who was a vendor for a multinational bank. I and a team of girls had to call up at the office of those who applied for credit cards and loans to verify that they actually were employed there, ask their designation, confirm their residential address, etc. There was a separate team of boys to do the physical field work of verifying the addresses. Currently I am working at a part-time evening job as a computer operator in a dental clinic, typing up dental case reports & routine letters and have also prepared numerous PPTs for my boss for his seminar presentations at State and National level conferences on maintaining oral health & Oral Cancer (For e.g. bad habits such as smoking being one of the major causes).


  11. Were you given any positions of responsibility during your academic or professional work life?

    Yes. At school I was selected by the Guides' teachers to head a group, which we named Blue Bell Patrol. At the full time job work place, within a few weeks of joining, my Boss gave me the role of Manager, to distribute work and supervise the team of tele-callers.


  12. How did you develop a passion towards content development and online participation initially?

    After leaving my full time job, I was looking for a part-time job, since sitting at a desk for over 10 years day after day after day was not exactly how I wanted to spend the rest of my life. While looking for part-time work, I first decided to learn properly how to use a computer. I joined a nearby class and learned how to use MS Office. We had just got our very first laptop at home and my sister downloaded a typing tutor for me to practice. At that time, my elder sister discovered that there were part-time work at home jobs. So I looked for and found a couple of them and got very much interested in it. For a few years I worked alongside my sister writing biographies of well-known people for a company that provided these unique CDs for merchant navy personnel, then discovered ISC along the way….and here I am!



  13. How were you introduced to IndiaStudyChannel.com and what induced you to join up as a member?

    My niece was enrolled in an IGCSE school and my sister was searching for old exam papers. In helping out search, I discovered IndiaStudyChannel.com. The papers were not there, but out of sheer curiosity I checked out the forum. I was astonished to see how people were interacting in a very intelligent manner on various topics. I got a little excited and was eager to join in the discussions too. At the same time I was a bit wary of signing up, thinking: Were there any fees? Would personal details about me be open to all? I was delighted to see that neither was there any fee nor would personal info be known to anyone other than the Webmasters. Even a photo was not mandatory! So in I dropped into the forum, hugely enjoying myself. You won't believe it, but in those initial few days, I did not even know there were any earning programs here! Only when I saw payments at a few members' profile pages & understood from forum threads about cash payments being made, that I came to know how to earn here. At that time, the earning sources were very limited, restricted to submitting question papers, links and posts in the business directory section (both the last two now closed). Refer to my journey: Why IndiaStudychannel.com is the best work at home site and not a scam? - A review


  14. Many members in ISC say that you are their Mentor and guided them well. Whom do you consider as your mentor?

    Without a doubt that would be Tony Sir. He has given me immense guidance on how to present an article, tips on SEO and blogging. No matter how busy he is (which is 24x7 as we all know) he always has a ear to lend - whether it is my sad tales of getting embroiled in giving the right tags for links (he hasn't yet given up hope on me learning!) or helping me out with blogging tips.


  15. How could you become the Managing Editor in a short span of time?

    Well, the best person to answer that question would be Tony Sir!

Wrap up

Let us wind up & take a break here after knowing about Vandana's personal information and hobbies to some extent. We will move on to the next interactive session with Vandana about her performance as Managing Editor of IndiaStudyChannel.com and other important aspects in the next article – Reading her mind – An interview with Vandana (Part II)


Article by Jagdish Patro
Jagdish Patro is a freelance writer and a regular contributor to ISC and other websites. Fond of reading books, novels and spends his leisure time by listening to music. He did his B.Sc in Applied Chemistry and his M.Sc in Resource Development Technology. He edited and published an in-house monthly journal by name ‘Srujana’ during 2009-2011 which was totally a private circulation.

Follow Jagdish Patro or read 81 articles authored by Jagdish Patro

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Comments

Author: Naresh Kumar Behera13 Aug 2016 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 2

A beautiful interview scripting Jagdish Patro! I am very much thankful to you for this effort so that I could know more about such a dedicated and intelligent person of ISC, Vandana Ma'am. I’m really grateful to her for her support and for educating me in these last five years of my association here. Hope everyone gets to know about her, as she never leaves the hand of any ISC dedicated members. Thanks again Jagdish for this attempt!

Author: K Mohan16 Aug 2016 Member Level: Platinum   Points : 1

Wow what a nice effort by the author to interview the most adored and most respected person of this great site, our Managing editor Vandana. She is the old friend of mine and we were with this site during ups and downs and her towering presence itself a great strength for this channel. By delegating responsibility to run this site, Tony our webmaster has proved that she has all the capability of managerial skill and thus commands great respects among the editorial board and also senior members like me. What is more interesting that she controls the over board members with her mild intervention and thus the forum which is known for some word duel between aggrieved members would be brought to normal process. By reading this interview I came to know many personal things about her. We are really greatly indebted and the ISC is very fortune enough to have a talented and most respected Managing editor at the helm of affairs.

Author: Kailash Kumar18 Aug 2016 Member Level: Platinum   Points : 0

I have read the article intently and waiting eagerly for the next article – 'Reading her mind – An interview with Vandana (Part II)'. I am a fan of the ME, to say the least. The author of the thread editor Jagdish has to be credited for taking initiative and has crafted a valuable article quite befitting to the occasion of completion of 5 years of ME.
Today, I tried to send my Rakhi gift to Vandana like the last year, but could not succeed because I had already sent her a gift within last three months.
My best wishes to ME and congratulations as well as thanks to Jagdish for the article.

Author: jenny28 Aug 2016 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 1

I enjoyed reading the article, the journey of Vandana from school to Managing Editor of ISC. She is an inspiration and mentor for many. Congratulations to Vandana for contributing 1000 articles in ISC. Her dedication and passion for writing is commendable. My best wishes to her and to Jagdish for bringing out this article.

Author: Tony John01 Sep 2016 Member Level: Gold   Points : 5

Vandana is undoubtedly the backbone of ISC. Even though she occassionally becomes the target of some of our hardcode debators, she indeed is one of the most respected and helpful personalities in ISC. One of the best qualities in her I like to mention here is, I can tell her my opinions openly without worrying how she is going to take it. Absolutely no ego issues and no unwanted debates. The only time she gets into a debate/demand mood is when she supports other editors. The whole editorial team in ISC works like a family, thanks to Vandana for bringing up that culture within our team.

We are proud to have her in the team and looking forward to work with her for years to come. And this is one of the best interviews I have ever read in ISC. Thanks to Jagdish Patro for putting this together.

Author: Partha Kansabanik03 Sep 2016 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 5

I had earlier missed this excellent interview of my most favourite person in ISC. Furthermore, the interviewer is another great favourite of mine. I have read the interview with great interest. It is really interesting to have an insight of our Managing Editor's childhood, hobby, present life and her association with ISC. We all know how dedicated she is in managing the activities of ISC. It's really a tough job to control habitually unruly and indisciplined Member like Partha Kansabanik.

Mr. Jagadish Patro, the interviewer, has structured the interview excellently. However, I feel that Mr. Patro could have asked one or two question(s) regarding the future planning of the Managing Editor towards further development/progress of ISC.

Author: Sheo Shankar Jha08 Sep 2016 Member Level: Gold   Points : 4

The present interview of the ME Vandana Madam gives us the oppurtunity to have an insight of her different activities and the interviewer Mr Patro took enough pain to touch all the vital points such as her childhood, hobby her association with the ISC etc. ME has displayed her School report card where there is incorporation of remarks of the teacher in different areas such as General knowledge, English conversation, Drawing, Phonetics etc. We can see how she could transform herself though consistent efforts made in different directions to display her potentials and capabilities. The interview was definitely quite enjoyable but in some areas it is lacking clarity such as her financial planning, future assignments and her likeness or otherwise with the ISC channel.
I hope the present article would arouse the interest of the existing members to know the different activities of the ME Vandanajee in a transparent manner.

Author: Venkiteswaran08 Sep 2016 Member Level: Diamond   Points : 2

This is probably the most interesting article I have yet read in ISC. Kudos to Jagdish Patro.

But I dispute and disprove Vandana's claim "I am quite a chatterbox in the virtual world". She has never uttered anything mentioned in this interview article. I now feel she was (is) a 'Chupa Rustom". I am eager to see what is in store in Part II.

Author: Vandana14 Sep 2016 Member Level: Platinum   Points : 4

By saying I am a chatterbox in the virtual world, I was not referring to revealing personal information as is the case in this interview. I was saying in terms of general chatting, in the sense of interacting with members via the forum and editors via emails/chat. I jabber quite a bit, you see, as editors especially well know! In the real world I may not be as talkative. Even when meeting with my friends, more often than not, I enjoy listening quietly to the others' conversations, with less talk from my own side. In that sense, comparatively, I am more talkative here in the virtual world.

Regarding the aspects of future plans, ISC, etc that is narrated in Part-II and will be published too in due course of time. I must state here that, as the interviewer, Editor Jagdish has done a stellar job! The questions he posed are really good, all entirely his. I have not edited any, nor did I side-track or delete a single one. I answered all of them honestly and frankly, straight from the heart.

Author: Ravi Shankar26 Sep 2016 Member Level: Platinum   Points : 3

Undoubtedly this is one of the fine and honest interview I have come across. The questionnaire by the author and responses by the respondent certainly brought a transparent conversation between the two.

After going through the interview concept here, I must congratulate the author for bringing out the knowledge and leadership qualities of the Managing Editor.

Overall the questions were well compiled by the author and responses were equally honestly given by the respondent.

Author: Hafeezur Rahman P17 Oct 2016 Member Level: Gold   Points : 2

I missed this article when published. Author Jagadish have taken nice initiative on this. It is very interesting to read this article and know some personal info about ME/Vandana beside ISC's contribution.

The answer for 15th question is, not only Tony knows, some other senior members too know of her relentless work toward ISC. Not as author's thinking - ME in short span of time. In fact, it was not a short span of time to reach as ME but it is little long, why? Each day in ISC is like a week who manages many hurdles, handle various responsibilities and replying accordingly beside other regular contributions.

Proud to be in ISC!

Great!

Guest Author: Sravya26 Oct 2016

Really nice information. The interview with Vandana was quite inspiring. Thank you for sharing.



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