Madam Samar Jamil: Tribute to A Teacher

Many years back, my class fellows and I were waiting for a new visiting teacher to take first session of an advanced master-level course on management. We were quite relaxed as the teacher was already fifteen odd minutes late and the course coordinator had just confirmed that she was stuck in a traffic jam caused due to VIP movement, which has become a hallmark of Islamabad ever since, and that she was on her way to the University and would soon make it for the class. Naturally, I and my class fellows went further slack expecting she would first apologize for coming late after entering the class, then routine ice-breaking would follow through formal introductions etc., and onwards till the end of the stipulated three hour credit time the course plan / outline, do’s & don’ts etc., would be discussed as the way first sessions are usually conducted.Black Friday Ugg Boots.

However, when our teacher entered the class two things struck us all like lightening, firstly the graceful & impressive personality of our teacher and secondly she did not follow the normal pattern and instead asked the students to get ready for a five minute written quiz, take out papers and explain any of the three functions of management. We were not ready for any quiz sort of thing at all but since we had studied principles of management in the previous semester so our teacher wanted to have an idea of our command over the core subject matter. She also wanted to gauge our time management skills and confidence. I remember I was sitting with a relegated Pakistan Air Force’s General Duty Pilot (GDP), who went totally stalled after realizing that he had to show his managerial acumen in a very short period of time. In view of his state, I started urging him to write whatever was coming to his mind. When our teacher noticed this, she asked my class fellow to change the seat.

Right after five minutes our teacher collected the papers and to add to our shock started examining the papers there and then. I could notice the silence in the class, as my class fellows knew their bad performance in the test, even though some of the students had shown customary reluctance to submit papers upon completion of the quiz cut-off time; maybe to buy more time or to convey to the teacher she should extend time or for that matter drop the whole idea of the mock test J After going through several papers she stopped on one paper, briefly scrolled through it and then said ‘this guy knows what management is all about’, and then she took my

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name. My pounding heart could not overcome the noise made by my class fellows who were clapping with awe and admiration. As a consequence I became prominent in the class. This was our first encounter with our revered teacher Madam Samar Jamil.www.atlantafest.com/Uggs-Outlet.php.

In coming days, Madam Samar taught us how to think creatively, how to find out-of-the-box solutions for organizational problems in order to fix them and how to lead a good professional life. She also gave us a task of developing print and audio

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advertisements, in which my group including my ex-GDP class fellow took highest marks. She employed all the knowledge dissemination methods i.e., presentations, group activity, assignments, role-playing, and case studies etc., to make us wiser on the subject. Her teaching methodology was really dynamic.

She was also pretty strict on dress code aspects as she used to urge all the male students to wear formal outfit in the class. I remember one day she asked me why I do not comply with her instruction and I, being a blue-eyed kid of the class used to take a little bit of leverage with her, replied that my family members suspect I want to impress someone whenever I prepare myself formally for the class. To this she replied ‘your family members suspect too much’ and I said ‘by the way madam, they are right when they suspect me!’ – again a roar of laughter in the class, whereas, I had no idea why I uttered those words. One day during the class she said to me ‘you look like a comic character to me’ referring to my distinct body language and animated facial expressions to which I replied ‘don’t say that madam, it will only leave me with an inferiority complex’. These and couple of more events involving same type of spontaneous gimmickry with words, and she thought I was a sharp cookie – my game plan for getting good marks seemed to be working just fine!

Many of the case studies discussed by Madam Samar gave us insight to the corporate world. Her personal case study about when her father, who was a general officer of Pakistan Army, died and how one of his colleagues asked Madam if she can drop her resume to

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his office on the sad occasion of funeral. Madam told us how disgusting it seemed to her back then, but after a month or so when she realized that she, being the eldest among siblings, had to take charge of the family, so then she realized why her father’s colleague wanted her to submit her resume. Subsequently she got a job in a reputable bank in its foreign trade department where she spent a considerable time of her career and reached a senior level position. She just used to write her name and organization without any mention of her designation or rank which used to impress my class fellows too. There is something which always made her keep a low profile all this time. Anyway, it was to highlight the importance of pragmatism in securing a job. She used to say that we needed a ‘PAWWA’ (Urdu slang for ‘big reference’) in order to grab a job that has promising long-term career prospects in Pakistan. Unfortunately, that is the way things still are today.

We learnt a great deal during the course and her pleasant personality made it quite a fun to grasp key ideas. I and my ex-GDP class fellow stood first in the class. I remember, out of curiosity when I and my ex-GDP class fellow went to her office to get our final marks and she said ‘how disappointing performance you both had show, but I have given you good marks’ left our faces paler than before but soon she informed us that we both were tied on the highest marks. What an interesting coincidence and a nice memory. I and my other class fellows remained in touch with Madam after graduation. We used to discuss our career strategies with her and she used to give her valuable suggestions. I used always to send her new-year greetings before she could take lead in this regard. I remember she wrote to me once that she would one day take her children to Disney Land and give them all the exposure she could in the world to make them productive members of the society. She was living happily with her family and husband Babar Sahib when somehow I lost contact with her, although I ‘Googled’ her couple of times to locate her or learn something about her but in vain. Keeping in mind her contribution towards my professional grooming, I dedicated my first ever professional research paper to her.

A couple of days back I was accompanying my father who had an appointment with a doctor at a local private hospital, while coming out of the hospital gate on the road I saw Madam Samar with her daughter on their way to the hospital. I introduced myself to her as I have changed a great deal appearance-wise over this time and to my delight she did not take much time to recall my face – if I used to look like a comic character to her when I was young, wonder what I looked like now J

She told me about the tragedy that struck her family recently. In Pakistan everyone is aware of the Bahria Town drag car accident in which five people lost their lives after a fatal drag car collided with the spectators who were seemingly standing at a reasonably safer area. Madam Samar Jamil’s son Asfandyar & husband Babar Sahib were among the five people who, unfortunately, lost their lives that day. I did not know about it as Madam Samar Jamil (Mrs. Babar according to media news) refused to come on camera after the accident even though Geo TV showed an approximately ten minute Urdu documentary on Asfandyar who a couple of days before the accident had written strikingly matching story of his death under similar circumstances in a class work essay.

Much has been written on the incidence, however, on her own accord there is not much mention of Madam Samar Jamil in the entire tragic saga. However, I feel it is our duty to appreciate people like Madam Samar who are in fact the unsung heroes of this great nation. I can speak for myself and my class fellows that Madam Samar touched our lives in so many ways. She was and still is the sunshine and beacon in our lives.

Madam Samar is teaching at a reputable business school these days and I know she will leave no stone unturned in upbringing of her daughter and that she would prove to be a great teacher to her business students. But I have seen the video of the crash again and again and feel in mind her son and husband to show same type of agility which Madam

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Samar had expected of her students, to get themselves out of the way of that out-of-control dragging car that left my Teacher with a grave set-back of her life.

Life is like a box of chocolate, you never know what you get. How right was Asfandyar when he told his mother that one can become a character of Harry Potter and although there is a way to bring him back but if he comes back, the world doesn’t seem interesting anymore… After saying that Asfandyar urged his mother not to call him back!

  8 comments for “Madam Samar Jamil: Tribute to A Teacher

  1. mashaikh@hec.gov.pk'
    May 3, 2011 at 1:58 am

    A very simple yet honest article. Comes straight from the heart!

  2. biya_kanwal@yahoo.com'
    August 30, 2012 at 3:41 am

    Its Really Heart touching :'(
    I was really saddened after reading this post and i felt even more pain. 🙁

  3. allanphilip@yahoo.com'
    ALLAN PHILIP
    October 19, 2012 at 2:16 pm

    I truly appreciate your feelings and your thoughtfulness but the Youtube link was certainly not necessary. I happen to be a very close family friend of your teacher and no one should ever be watching what happened out there.It just brings more pain .

    • pakistaniaat@yahoo.com'
      whh
      October 19, 2012 at 2:40 pm

      I have removed the link as suggested. Thanks for the concern!

      • allanphilip@yahoo.com'
        ALLAN PHILIP
        October 19, 2012 at 2:54 pm

        I appreciate your very prompt response.

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