Deviga secured 95 marks in Mathematics, 98 in Social studies, 96 in English and Second Language (Tamil) and 89 in Science.
M. Dheviga, a student of The Study Lecole Internationale, promoted by Dr K.M. Cherian Educational Society, emerged second only to the school topper in the class X CBSE Board exam with 474 marks out of 500. Her single parent mother, M. Rajeswary, has always taken care of her and her brother M. Jurendiran, two years younger to her, and their grandmother.
From the time she joined the first standard in 2008, it has been sponsored by Dr Cherian, founder-chairman of the society, just as he sponsors the education of the other 44 children of The Study.
Deviga secured 95 marks in Mathematics, 98 in Social studies, 96 in English and Second Language (Tamil) and 89 in Science. She has her roots in a fishermen’s community, with her family living in Lawspet in Puducherry. Just like any other child from a similar disadvantaged background, she proved herself by her hard work and dedication.
Apart from study, she has never stepped back from helping her mother in household work during the evening hours. Helping clear his brother’s doubts is also an important activity amid her five hours of study stretching to midnight prior to the exams.
In Deviga’s life it was the Tsunami that washed away their simple joys along with her father in 2004. Struggling with the new miseries and sorrow, Deviga’s mother, who took up work as a housemaid, approached the school as she aspired to give her children something more permanent and lasting than a few rupees in compensation.
Naturally enough, it was uncomfortable for Deviga to mingle with her new mates, more so when she had no knowledge of English, commonly used in the school education. The determined child picked up English gradually and did well in academics by hard work, observing power and sincerity.
“I was very uncomfortable when I joined school as I didn’t know to speak in English. I could not understand much. But my principal, Alice Ma’am, teachers and friends were very supportive. They made me feel at ease. I gained confidence from class VI. I started taking my studies more seriously and spent more hours with her text books. Now I can communicate with ease,” she adds, reminiscing about her early schooldays and the support she received from teachers and friends.
She is also passionate about volleyball and tennis and she loves to read a lot. The young girl takes her mother as her role model, saying, “I always looked up to my mother with admiration. She is very hard working and strong at heart. She motivates me constantly saying that I should make the best use of the very good education offered to me to make it big in life.”
She wants to convey a message to aspiring students, “Time is precious. Use it wisely. Opportunities knock at our doors and it is important that we make the best use of them. We can always change destiny with hard work and perseverance.”
Asked about her future aspirations, Deviga shared that she desires to become a gynaecologist and wants to give her mom a comfortable life as a token of gratitude.