Meet Meghana Musunuri, the Chairperson of Fountainhead Global School & Junior College; Founder of Save Water and Nature (SWAN), and the CEO of My Edu Guru. She is an exemplary teacher and entrepreneur who dons multiple feathers in her cap of achievements.
Born and brought up in India, she pursued her further education in London and continued to work professionally. Upon her return to India, she initiated several undertakings, some for the amelioration of society and others characterizing powerful business ventures. As a Computer Science & Education graduate, Child Psychology and Neuroscience champion with over 20 years of global experience, Meghana believes in “Transforming Education for Human Flourishing”.
As a Founder & Correspondent of Fountainhead Global School & Junior College, Meghana strongly believes in the art of giving and teaches children the beauty of it through experiential learning. Her initiatives include providing Recycling Bins to support Swachh Bharat, a 5K run to ban Plastic, Promoting Organic festivals along inculcating Leadership Skills and Empathy in the children. Her praiseworthy philanthropic initiatives include the NGO called SWAN and a talk show called ‘Common Sense Talks’. The workshops conducted by Meghana impart knowledge on the importance of environmental sustainability and portray her hands-on approach to all her projects.
She earned respect for Telangana Teachers worldwide by being chosen as Top 50 finalists of the Global Teacher Prize 2021 by the Varkey Foundation. Out of thousands of nominations from 121 countries, she is the first teacher ever from Telangana to receive such an honor and recognition for her contribution to the field of education.
Awarded “Devi 2016”, a women’s award for dynamism and innovation by the New Indian Express for pushing boundaries in education, Meghana was twice also awarded the prestigious “Acharya Devo Bhava” (2014 & 2015). Having earned the title of Hyderabad City’s Woman Champion for “Women Entrepreneur on the Web” – a Google initiative, she remains true to her passion which is education, philanthropy, and empowered entrepreneurship.
Dr. Sailaja: What drives you? Why do you do what you do?
Meghana: I think I have a little high level of motivation to do things that matter to students. I feel that the foundation years play a major role in shaping people. For me, education is giving life skills required for the next 40 years and preparing students to face life.
Dr. Sailaja: How do you see challenges that you face?
Meghana: Challenges make me a stronger person every time, so I would like to embrace them rather than complain about them.
Dr. Sailaja: What are the biggest opportunities you see as a leader?
Meghana: There is a huge gap in educating this generation of students with 21st-century skills. This can be our opportunity to be able to bridge that gap for a better and sustainable future.
Dr. Sailaja: What leadership traits and characteristics or indeed strengths and weaknesses do you feel
are required or hinder you in your pursuit of excellence in your field of expertise?
Meghana: Grit is my success mantra. Time and again this trait in me proved me right. Things can be improved with every try-out and opportunities can come in my shades and sizes. Just accept them. In my field, the right research and the right inputs will help us overcome any shortcomings.
Dr. Sailaja: When did you step into this role?
Meghana: I was on the quest to learn how to handle babies as I was not sure what to do if they arrived. Learning about them, and working with them for a few years gave me the confidence to embrace motherhood. In the process, I realized my happiness is in working with younger generations. It’s been 21 years in this field and this role for 14 years!
Dr. Sailaja: How would you describe your leadership style?
Meghana: Transformational Leadership!
Dr. Sailaja: How do you motivate your school kids and faculty?
Meghana: By setting examples.
Dr. Sailaja: How do you manage the multiple roles that you do in your daily life?
Meghana: Through planning and execution. Reflection on the execution always helps me in improving and empowering.
Dr. Sailaja: What’s your philosophy in life?
Meghana: We have this life as a boon. It’s up to us how we can create value and contribute to the betterment of society. I strongly believe in “solve locally to see the impact globally”. My philosophy of teaching is woven around student-centric approaches such as Blended Learning, Problem-based Learning, Depth of Knowledge – Level 4, Socio-Emotional Learning, and a Growth Mindset.
Dr. Sailaja: Your message to parents…
Meghana: Be patient! Life cannot be changed in a minute, but decisions taken in a minute change everything in life. Always stay calm before you decide…remember your children and the impact of your decision on them. Just academic excellence is not enough to be a global citizen.
Dr. Sailaja: The different awards that you received…
Meghana: Besides the one in my intro, SUNFO Global Federation of Sri Lanka awarded me with SUNFO Ayuboowan, a Nobel honorary title of Sustainable Development Global Accelerator at Sustainable
Development Decade Summit 2021.
I am conferred with the title of “Pride of Telangana, 2021” by Round Table India.
I was also awarded a Naari Extraordinary – Super Women of the Decade 2010-2020 award by Hi9.
I was also honored with the “Power Women Award 2021” by Lead India Foundation and the
“Working Women Achievers Award 2021” by Ooruni Foundation.
The most prized one was when I was honored with Dr. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan Teacher’s Excellence Award 2020 in the National Teacher Award Function by Shikshak Kalyan for my outstanding services in the field of education, especially promoting youth encouragement.
I was conferred with “The Rex Karmaveer Chakra Award (Silver)” Global Fellowship 2019 – a global honor by the United Nations, the International Confederation of NGOs, and Rex in association with CtrlS.
Dr. Sailaja: What has been a memorable experience in your journey thus far?
Meghana: There are many of course, but the most memorable one is where I played a major role in requesting Google to create the platform for education (this was in 2012).
Another is conceptualizing an educational outfit, My Edu Guru, which incorporates my experience as well as knowledge gleaned across multifarious verticals. As a career coach guiding students to build a growth portfolio that displays their qualities and talents to get placed in worldwide top universities.
Dr. Sailaja: How do you lead holistic development in your school kids?
Meghana: With a vision to provide holistic development for students, enabling them to face any challenge in life, academically, professionally, and personally, I took up a social cause to revive 15.5 acres of Meedikunta Lake (an urban lake in Hyderabad) by involving students and local communities. The
Lake Revival Project (#i4Meedikunta), brought down the number of Dengue and other mosquito-borne diseases which were on the rise till then. This benefited the overall health and well-being of not just her school students but also other schools, colleges, business outlets, 200,000+ pilgrims visiting religious places every week, and around 9,000 families living in the vicinity. Our school hosted Ozone Run – the first of its kind in India to improve lung spaces in the city.
Dr. Sailaja: Your Success Mantra?
Meghana: It is 5:1 – Mention 5 Good things before making 1 Complaint! It is a super success – this helps
students, parents, and my team to learn and appreciate the good in others.
Pics Credit: Sridhar Vunnam
Dr. Sailaja hails from Hyderabad, India, and is a seasoned HR Leader, Guest Speaker, and Sustainable Practices enthusiast.