Dr Balamuralithara Balakrishnan, a professor and researcher who hails from Ipoh, Perak had recently received international recognition after being appointed for a fellowship position at the ITMO University, Russia which happens to be one of the prestigious universities in Russia specifically in the area of Educational Creative Studies.
In addition, he is also the first Malaysian to receive such an honour.
Speaking to Varnam, Balamuralithara is proud of the recognition received form an international organisation that acknowledges his talents and achievements in his field of study, being in the line of educational creative studies, which is also a new area of study that only a few researchers have delved into.
“I will be eternally grateful to the Almighty God, my family members who have always supported me, and my university, UPSI, for paving the way for me to grow,” he expressed.
The professor who currently resides in Hulu Bernam said he will be heading to St Petersburg, Russia to conduct classes for subjects on creative studies and technology for the ITMO University undergraduates and postgraduates students in September 2022.
This 44-year-old prof said he will be conducting research on how students who are engaged in the creative and innovation process deal with ethics and sustainability issues as a part of his appointed position.
Furthermore, in the year 2020, this dedicated professor was the first ASEAN academician who received an international grant award from the Engineering Information Foundation, United States of America. (Now that’s a huge deal)
The special grant is for his project titled “I am a Girl, I am an Engineer: Inspire and Empower Impoverished Urban Girls to be Future Engineers”.
This huge project is aimed to develop appropriate characteristics among impoverished urban girls (from the B40 group) in secondary school-aged 14-15 years old through Inspiration and Empowerment, leading them to choose engineering as their career path.
The professor of the Faculty of Art, Computing and Creative Industry described that with this initiative he aims to uplift and nurture these girls’ capabilities in a positive way, pushing them to greater heights in their lives and breaking the poverty cycle.
According to him, this project will begin this year after being delayed for two years owing to the coronavirus outbreak.
Balamuralithara who has spent almost 2 decades in the education field, has also received several national grants and industry grants from IBM Malaysia. All these grants were obtained in the area of Creative Studies, Ethics and Sustainability and STEM education.
“My expertise is recognised at the national as well as the international levels. Notably, I was invited to deliver keynote speeches in South Korea, Japan, India and Indonesia,” he remarked.
Congratulations on your notable achievements, Dr Balamuralithara!