A Philanthropic Educationist
The term ‘Philanthropic Educationist’ could have been coined for her. For Archana Surana, Managing Trustee and Chief Mentor at the Surana Educational Institutions, has dedicated her life towards accessible education and community social welfare.
Born in 1966 to Sunitha and Dr PM Bhandari in Jodhpur, Archana completed her meritorious studies (a rank holder at metric and University level; National Scholarship Awardee from the Ministry of Education and Culture), before getting married to Dr Dilip Surana, scion of Surana Industries (Micro Labs), in Bangalore.
It didn’t take long for the perfect daughter-in-law of the illustrious family to find a firm footing at both, home as well as work. In 1995, she officially took over the responsibility of the Surana Educational Institutions.
A born leader, Archana drove the growth of the organisation in myriad ways. With a single-minded focus, she has seen the institutes expand to encompass all levels of education from Pre-KG up to Research Centres, and all fields from Information Technology to Fashion Design and everything in between.
However, Archana herself will be the first to tell you that providing education is not her aim. Her ultimate goal is to also provide students with skill-sets and placement assistance so they become useful resources in nation building. To further this endeavour, she started facilitating scholarships for the academic performers, visually challenged, and socially backward.
Simultaneously, she encouraged those good in sports and cultural activities. By providing advanced technology, the institutions have attained over 1800 sports personalities of which 10 are at international level, 780 at state level, and 880 at university level. Hockey Olympian V Raghunath too is a proud alumni of the Surana education family.
Archana’s efforts has seen the institution receive various recognitions: ‘Top Management Institute’ by Network 7 Media Group; ‘Premium College in Quality Education’ by Stimulus Research Services; ‘Outstanding Institute Award’ by World Education Congress. More importantly, Surana College has been accredited with ‘A’ grade by NAAC-National Assessment and Accreditation Council, secured over 40 University ranks from UG and PG departments, and contributed many national and international personalities to the nation.
This wouldn’t have been possible without the compassionate and self-motivated Archana, who literally lives by her motto – ‘Service through Education and Community Service’.
A doyen of the Bangalore society, Archana has contributed much to the community. She was a pioneer to launch her iconic ‘community based rehabilitation project’ (CBR) which provides healthcare, livelihood and legal assistance. 11 villages with over 700+ people have benefited by this.
A conscientious citizen, Archana has also launched initiatives to increase the green cover in urban Bangalore. She adopted a BBMP garden for development, planted saplings with trees guard on the road sides of Bangaluru city, helped name trees in Shri Krishnarao park, and motivated students to plant over 1000 saplings through different camps. She also organises blood donation and eye check-up camps round the year.
As the Managing Trustee of GDA Foundation Trust and Bhawaribai Surana Trust, and a Director of Micro Labs Ltd, Archana always strives to achieve a high standard in whatever responsibility she undertakes. This has not only earned her the respect and goodwill of different cross-sections of society, but also won her innumerable awards and honours.
Some of these include: ‘Karnataka Gaurav Award’ by All India Technical and Management Council; ‘India’s Most Valuable Women Educationist’ by Network 7 Media Group, ‘Best Interactive Solution Provider’ by ASSOCHAM, ‘Mahila Ratan Gold Medal Award’ by Indian Solidarity Council, ‘Star of Asia Award’ by International Business Council, ‘Mother Teresa Sadbhawana Award’ by Achievers Association for Economic Research and Development, among many more.
Yet, Archana retains the poise and simplicity that is a hallmark of the Surana family. We can’t help but ask her the secret of her multi-task success, to which she replies, “Time-management is the key to success.” Archana balances work and family with finesse, spending quality time with her daughter Diya Surana on one hand, and fulfilling her father-in-law, GC Surana’s (Founder-Chairman, Micro Labs Ltd and GDA Foundation) vision, on the other.
Successfully carrying forward her famous legacy, Archana Surana is a true inspiration for many.