The Global Education & Leadership Foundation (tGELF) – Annual Summit


LIFE 2015, the fifth edition of The Global Education & Leadership Foundation’s (tGELF) annual summit focused on ‘Education for Leadership’ with an emphasis on global citizenry and the need for collective action. This year tGELF worked closely with partners around the issues established by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, the Global Agenda Council on Education of the World Economic Forum and the work being done by the Global Poverty Project. There was also special focus on supporting the rebuilding efforts in Nepal after the human tragedy of the earthquake, with particular attention on education.

The highlight of the conference was the keynote address by Nobel laureate and founder of the Bachpan Bachao Andolan, Kailash Satyarthi. While addressing the gathering of young students, he said, ‘There’s a leader within each one of you. A leader must develop the qualities of 5Cs; Clarity, Creativity, Courage, Conviction and Collectivity. Every leader must translate his wisdomin to action and convert obstacles into social good.’ He also said, ‘Leaders love obstacles. They love success, but they don’t hate failures. They like the challenge of translating failures into success.’ At the end of his address, he invited the youth and children to join his 100 million campaign to stand up for the rights of the left-out children.

Other eminent people, both from India and abroad, who spoke to the students during the course of the conference included:

  • Binalakshmi Nepram, Activist and Founder, Control Arms Foundation of India.
  • Brian Page Bauerle, Monk and Executive Director of the Asian Leadership Institute.
  • Dr Dwight Jaggard from the University of Pennsylvania.
  • Kelly Traver, MD, Practicing Partner and Clinician at Menlo Medical Clinic and Assistant Clinical Professor at Stanford.
  • Rabbi Shai Piron Former Education Minister, Government of Israel and member of Knesset.
  • Robert Wilson-Black, CEO Sojourners and Board co-chair of the National Museum of American Religion (NMAR).
  • Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswati, President of Divine Shakti Foundation & Founding Director International Yoga Festival, Parmarth Ashram.
  • George Joseph Deputy Director of the Whitney and Betty MacMillan Center for International and Area Studies at Yale University.
  • Wei Soo, Co-founder and Managing Director of Operations of the Global Poverty Project (GPP).
  • William Gaudelli, Associate Professor of Social Studies and Education at Teachers College.

The conference also celebrated the achievements of three outstanding teachers who were awarded The Education Prize 2015: Harnessing Innovation in the primary, middle and senior school categories. An eminent jury chose these winners based on their ability to innovate, try new techniques, creatively engage and enrich the educational process in their practice included:Radha B Subramanian, Padma Seshadri Bala Bhavan, T Bhavan, Chennai; Rupa Pal Chowdhury, Shiv Nadar School, Noida and Roopali Arora, Sanskriti School, New Delhi.