A few weeks ago I attended my niece’s graduation at Tufts. Neha is a bright star in the firmament – one of the nicest people I know, as well as one who makes our generation feel confident about “passing the torch”.


Neha volunteered at Karuna Vihar when she was only in high school. She was indispensable to us then, even as a child. I still remember Shivani, the teacher she assisted, wondering how she would manage  without her help once she returned home. Her time with us (we like to think) was the beginning of what has become a passion for working with children with disabilities and I was proud and overjoyed to hear that she has been selected for a prestigious program at Mt Sinai in New York in which she will be doing research in autism. At the toast I proposed at her celebration dinner after the graduation, I said how hopeful and wonderful it was to have such a brilliant young woman joining us in the ongoing challenge of working with children with disability and that perhaps she would be the one to find a cure for autism!

It was a great day there at Tufts for Karuna Vihar – not only because of Neha. The very first person to emerge on the stage for the Masters students was a boy named Evan Roth-Howe. It took me so much by surprise to hear his name announced I wasn’t really ready with the camera (which explains the fuzzy quality of the photo!):


Evan ALSO volunteered at Karuna Vihar back in 2004 and is now, I was delighted to learn,  about to embark on a career in Early Intervention, having just earned a degree in Childhood Development at Tufts. We can’t claim as much credit for Evan’s decision (we barely recognized each other), but it was wonderful to see another KV veteran continuing in the field of special needs.

And finally, on the same day, we met another KV volunteer and Tufts graduate – Angie Lee, there to celebrate her brother’s graduation.


Here she is with Anand and Cathleen (also KV volunteers!). The whole day (which I like to call “Karuna Vihar Does Tufts” was such a beautiful reminder of the circle and flow of life and how experiences in youth continue to affect our growth and development for many years to come – influencing our choices in work, friendships and family relations.

To the graduates!

Showing 2 comments
  • Manju Singhania

    Amazing !! All these young people make everyone at KV so happy and proud.God bless them. Neha is so grown up and looks so beautiful.

  • Shachi

    Many congratulations to Neha and Evan! Hope they come back to KV sometime in the future.

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