As a young boy, Dr Sasidharan Raman Nair was deprived of a chance at getting an education. Instead of pulling him down, this life’s unfortunate event encouraged him to work hard and focus on learning.

“I had to start working when I was 15, while at the same time taking classes and doing self-study. Life was tough back then,” he shares.

At the age of 65, Dr Sasidharan is now happy to embrace his golden years, having graduated from the Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) programme in 2020. It took him nine years to complete his study that was fraught with obstacles but he finally made it through.

“I was among the first batch of learners that registered for the programme in 2011. I had just finished the Master of Business Administration (MBA) and decided to straight away signed up for the newly introduced DBA.”

He was determined to study and keep learning as a way to compensate for the things he had missed out before.

The unfortunate circumstances in his early life kept him going. He was determined to study and keep learning as a way to compensate for the things he had missed out before. And he proved it with a collection of degrees in different fields.

“I have a diploma in accounting, degree in computer science, MBA, and now DBA. I also used to work in the logistics industry, which provided me the opportunity to learn as much as I can and gather knowledge about the industry. The experience was simply great!”

This retired lecturer drew inspiration from his supervisor and other academics. “They were my role models and I always aspire to be just as encouraging and inspiring to my own students just like my mentors,” says Dr Sasidharan, who still lectures part-time besides being a company consultant.

Despite the long commute between his home in Johor Bahru to the learning centre in Kuala Lumpur, he never missed a single class. He was particularly fond of the sharing sessions, which he felt was the best part of his study. “Everyone in class shared a lot of interesting knowledge and experiences, and we benefitted from each other.”

“There were times when even lecturers said, “we learn from you also, and together we learn”. It was a great experience,” Dr Sasidharan says with a big smile.

A true champion of lifelong learning, Dr Sasidharan now channels his passion into encouraging everyone around him, especially the young generation, to pursue their studies to the highest level and to never stop learning. “I hope to venture into business and create something beneficial for young adults that will hopefully provide them with a better future,” Dr Sasidharan concludes.

Listen to Dr Sasidharan's story in his own words here!