Bala Vidya Mandir Bala Vidya Mandir

Senior Secondary School

(Affiliated to Central Board of Secondary Education, New Delhi)




Horizon Club

The Horizon Club helps the students to embark on a journey of discovery through shared ideas and education. The purpose of the club is to expand the horizon of knowledge by giving the students of class XI the unique opportunity to interact with eminent personalities who have carved a niche’ in society. The club enables the students to connect, learn and grow by sharing new ideas, learning new ways of thinking and growing into better human beings and global leaders.

2018- 2019

Horizon Club Meeting -2

The Horizon Club conducted its second meeting with Dr. Sunder as the guest lecturer. Dr.Sunder is one of the few medical practitioners of the rare specialty of Physical medicine and Rehabilitation. He holds an MD degree in Physical medicine and Rehabilitation awarded by the Tamil Nadu Dr.MGR Medical University.

Dr. Sunder is trained in ergonomic principles for workplace assessment and design at Lansing, sponsored by the University of Michigan U.S.A in 2006, thus making him a qualified health professional. He has a rare distinction of being the only Indian to have authored a textbook on “Rehabilitation medicine”.

He inspired students to continue pursuing all of their talents apart from academics, as it might help in the future. Dr.Sunder was an epitome of this, as even though he had so much to study, he never lost his devotion towards music. He is a well-known classical vocalist and has given over 500 performances all over the world in the last 30 years. He was also awarded the “Kalaimamani” by the Government of Tamil Nadu recognizing his contribution to Carnatic music.

He also motivated students to stop only when they are done with their goal and not stop when they became tired. He also gave them the key value that they should never miss out any opportunity in life.  

Horizon Club Meeting -1

On the13th of August, the 11th grade students of Bala Vidya Mandir Sr. Secondary schoolattended a guest lecture by Mr. Ajith Narayan, founder of Invention Labs. The activity was held by the Horizon club of Bala Vidya Mandir, whose aim is to expand the “horizon” of knowledge by giving the students the opportunity to interact with eminent personalities who have carved a niche for themselves in society.

The session was a very interactive session in which, Mr. Ajith told the students about his journey in the corporate world as a software engineer in the United States and the skills he learnt on the job, which he used to start a company called Invention Labs In 2007.Inventions labs is a company that provides hardware and software solutions to problems in everyday life such as distributing milk packets in a locality or cutting large sheets of metal using laser. He then told the students about a programme which he and his team launched in 2013 called Awaz. Awaz is a program that allows children with disabilities such as limb impairments, autism and other such disabilities to communicate with others.

Mr. Ajith concluded his speech by telling the students to work hard and about how there are no shortcuts to achieving success. At the end of the speech, the students were urged to think about how their role in society could help those who are helpless, just as how Mr. Ajith did in developing a tool that helps children with disabilities to communicate more easily.


2017- 2018


The Horizon club of Bala Vidya Mandir organises sessions for students to meet eminent personalities in the city to gain inspiration.

The first meeting of the club for class 11 students was inaugurated by Mr. M Pratap who has just cleared his UPSC Exam in 2016 with Political science and International relations as his optional subjects.

The event began with an introduction about the guest of honour. Mr Pratap hails from an agricultural background from Madurai and shared his journey from the start to how he achieved success in a highly competitive exam. He spoke to all the students about why he chose civil services, reason being that he wanted to do good for the country. He urged  all to consider serving the nation.

Mr Pratap also explained told us why it was essential to have passion and a fixed goal. All students understood the necessity of having focus to achieve their dreams.

He also gave  insights into the life of IAS officers and all the hardships that one must be willing to face if they have to rise to the top.

At the end of the session, many students had a lot of questions to ask. He gave inspiring replies to them. The students gained a lot of knowledge from him and had a very productive session. The event ended with a vote of thanks and a memento was handed over to the chief guest.



2016- 2017

Dr. C. Sylendra Babu, IPS

‘Be honest. Tell me, how many of you can honestly say that you are happy?’.
When Dr. C. Sylendra Babu, IPS put forth this question, there was an awkward silence in the room.

On the 20th of February, Dr. C. Sylendra Babu, IPS had visited Bala Vidya Mandir School to address the students of classes 9 & 11 on the importance of cyber security.

He started the interaction by asking the students whether they were happy at what they do, and addressed them on how this was the period of time where they should be enjoying themselves as much as possible.

A distinguished athlete and a very prominent personality, Dr. Sylendra Babu had organised and participated in an 890km long cycle rally from Chennai to Kanyakumari. He has participated in many sporting events including athletics, swimming and shooting in which he had won national awards and represented India on many occasions. He had also participated in an 8 km swimming marathon.

Dr. Sylendra Babu had been awarded the Prime Minister’s Medal for saving 18 bus passengers who fell into the Sivagangai Lake, the President’s Medal for Meritorius service, the President’s Police Medal for distinguished service and the Chief Minister’s Medal for outstanding devotion to duty for curbing communal riots.
A father with two sons as old as many of the students, he knew how to communicate with them well and understood the situation from the student’s perspective. Students listened intently as he advised them on many aspects of life, and shared many of his own life experiences.

Students were shown a video on the speech of Ms. Indra Nooyi, CEO of PepsiCo, and were told that the key to success was to work hard, to always recognise where they were from as part of themselves and to never let the creativity in them die out, for that was what kept them alive and active.

Students were also shown the video of the song ‘Dancing Queen’ by Swedish band ABBA. Dr. Sylendra Babu said that that was one of the more popular songs in his early days, and that he felt inspired by the song. He told the students that the song should tell them how they should dance and jibe, and have the time of their lives, not feel worried about the future but to live in the present.

Finally, he told the students about three incidents he had come across where students had been experiencing cyber bullying and were in trouble. He spoke of how the computer and the internet, some of the most useful and prominent inventions could link people all across the world in a positive way, but at the same time bring together the wrong people also. He told the students that they should think twice about anything and everything they spoke on the phone or sent through messages, or posted on social media because there was a record of anything they posted and if it fell into the hands of the wrong people, there could be dire consequences.

Dr. Sylendra Babu is also the author of 4-5 major books on physical fitness, success in interviews and how students should look forward to the positive aspects of life. Students who interacted with him were awarded with his book ‘Boys & Girls, Be Ambitious’.

Students felt honoured and were excited to be in the presence of Mr. Babu and learn from as eminent and straightforward a person as he is.


Session with Vishwanathan Anand

The last horizon club meeting of the academic year involved chess grandmaster and former world champion Vishwanathan Anand addressing the students of Class XI on 27th February. His presence caused a stir across the whole school and students thronged the gate in hope for the champion’s signature. His session with the students began at around 3 am, with the students buzzing with excitement at the thought of this master of his art addressing them. His session moved along at a pleasant pace, with him starting with the story of how he got into chess as a 6 year old after his mother introduced it to him as an apparent whim. He moved on to tell the students how he got hooked to the sport, playing by himself and trying out all sorts of different moves of the game. His parents saw his interest and as if by fate, he was joined into a chess club, where he could finally test his skills against other people.
The story took an amusing twist, where he revealed that initially no one wanted to play with him due to his young age. He moved on from the chess club at the age of 14, and qualified on his first try to the nationals. He then took part in the junior and sub-junior chess championships at the national level. He became India’s first GM at the age of 16 and went on to the win the Padma Shri in 1988, at the age of 18. He became the undisputed World Champion in 2007, and held the position for a record 21 months. He then moved on to the Question and Answer Portion of the Session, where students asked him a variety of questions on his life and chess career, including many questions such as the other sports which he followed, his toughest opponent till date, for which he said that he had faced many tough opponents, ranging from the seniors at his chess club to the current World Champion Magnus Carlsen. Some of his other answers to questions which were; if he had ever shown his anger due to a loss, revealed that he has had many fits of throwing of objects and pained yelling, which Mr. Anand said was a part of the sport as well as life. He also comically revealed that he had had to draw many a game with various juniors who had tried to pit their skills against him.

He also gave his praise for his classmate at Don Bosco, Mr. Arvind Swamy, whom when asked stated that he thought that he was already successful at school and was admired even before his rise to fame as a Kollywood star. He also told the students that even if they were pursuing lesser known sports, to follow their heart and not give up. Mr. Anand also sadly stated that just like other sports across the country and the world, politics had reached its long arm even into the domain of chess. But, he said that sportsmen should never let such hurdles in their career stop them or influence them into the wrong path.

Overall, it was very eye-opening session which told us to follow our heart and go after what we want in life. It also told us that we cannot always win at what we do or in life, but should not let that deter us from achieving our goal in life.



Mr. Sivaraman joined IAS in 1962 and was assigned to Madhya Pradesh. He became Collector in 1966 and introduced major changes in tackling famine by using funds for permanent development works for mitigation of future famines.

Later he joined the Finance Department of Madhya Pradesh and served for about 6 years . Subsequently worked in the capacity of Joint Secretary Dept.of Economic affairs, Govt.Of India and led several delegations abroad.
He served as the Director General of Civil Aviation of India and Additional Secretary Ministry of Civil Aviation. He introduced major safety reforms in pilot training, setting up flight inspection directorate, introducing air safety audit etc. He then became the Revenue Secretary, Govt.Of India and initiated major tax reforms under Dr  Manmohan Singh.
He also worked as Advisor to the UN Security Council Committee on Counter- terrorism.


Mr. Sivaraman delivered a speech on future career prospects and gave the students an insight into the interesting experiences of his personal life.
 He explained that we must strive to achieve a versatile and multi-faceted personality. He elucidated on diverse career prospects available in the present era. He also reiterated the fact that academics were just one aspect of our lives and adequate importance must be given to holistic development.  He gave a brief description of how he had humble beginnings being born into a lower middle class family and then working his way up to achieve one of the most coveted positions in the society. He also cited a few examples of how he dealt with tough situations in his life, which taught us that courage and an undeterred spirit are essential in facing hardships.

All students were inspired to emulate his values. He emphasised that hard work, perseverance and courage are very important to succeed in life.



The guest speaker for the fourth Horizon club meeting was Mr.P.V.Ramaswamy who is an author and a well-known motivational speaker.

In the meet, Mr.P.V.Ramaswamy spoke to us about the need to set goals to achieve in the future and work towards it. He spoke in detail about what he called as ‘looking beyond’. He emphasized on the need to look into the future, having career goals and working towards achieving them. He enthralled the students with his humorous way of speaking. There were several comical videos of real life incidents shown to us, with which he not only engaged us but also conveyed strong messages like- ‘high expectations sometimes lead to disappointments’. During the meet, Mr.P.V.Ramaswamy also spoke about his personal experiences in life –his journey as an author, the various obstacles he had to overcome to be successful, few interesting encounters he had in life and about his own family.
During the questionnaire session, which was the last part of the meet, he gave very interesting answers to questions put forth by the students.

On a whole, the Horizon club meet turned out to be a very interesting and interactive session and it was indeed our pleasure having MrP.V.Ramaswamy addressing us and sharing with us his wide knowledge and experience.




The guest for the third Horizon club meeting was Mr. Siddharth Ramesh, a proud alumnus of Bala Vidya Mandir Sr. Sec. School. He spoke about the problems and challenges faced by students in the formative years of school and the ways to tackle them. He stated that good values inhibited by students help them contribute to the development of society. He stressed on the role of students in bringing positive changes in India and the world at large.




The second horizon club meeting for the academic year 2015-16 was held on Monday, August 1st. The guest lecturer was Mr. Mathivanan Elangovan, senior director of Architecting Learning Solutions, Cognizant Technologies.Mr.Elangovan spoke of his intriguing and interesting journey from his days as an electronics engineeer to Director of Learning Solutions at Cognizant Technologies.

Mr. Elangovan spoke of two of the most important aspects in today's world that govern one's success-choices and chances. He spoke of the impact that a decision which we take has on our lives and also explained how imperative it is to realise our talents and build them. Captivating the students through his crafty one-liners, he imbibed in them the never-say-die attitude through his tale of learning object-oriented-programming in a week.

The session was a very interactive one, with the students asking him various questions which he answered with eagerness. The session ended with a standing ovation by the students to thank Mr. Elangovan for sparing time in the midst of his choc-a-bloc schedule to address the 11std students on the important aspects towards growth and happiness in life.



The first Horizon Club activity of the academic year 2016-2017 was held on 1st July. The eminent guest present was Mr. Swaminathan who had a lot of useful insights and words of advice expressed  through his thought-provoking talk in which he shared his success story. From an accountant intern to an Airport Manager to a Philanthropist, his journey was certainly very interesting to listen to and learn from. 

Mr. Swaminathan was kind enough to share what he felt, were essential for students to ensure success in life and more importantly make us responsible members of society. He emphasized on the importance of hard work, honesty and humility through the course of our daily lives as well as the necessity to inculcate compassion towards the rest of society in our habits. 

The session ended with students posing various interesting questions to Mr. Swaminathan such as “why an honest man like him had not joined politics”, "how he mobilised microfinance in remote tea estate regions of Tamil Nadu"  and “what his further dreams in life were”.  He responded to every question with great eagerness and equanimity. All in all, it was a great opportunity presented to us from which the 11std students were able to learn many valuable lessons.






On 12th January 2016, Tuesday, the students of class XI attended a lecture by Dr.Sumanth C Raman, an eminent Quizmaster and Media person. Dr. Sumanth spoke to the students on various topics necessary for life, including the importance of knowledge, attitude and communication.

Stressing on the importance of studying to gain knowledge and not for marks, Dr. Sumanth touched upon the same with a few illustrations from his own life. He advised the students on the need to do one's task well and with passion, and not expecting some reward or result out of it.

Attitude is the defining factor in one's success, and the right attitude can make a mountain of difference. With this idea as a foundation, Dr. Sumanth proceeded to narrate a story of his friend, who had come up with leaps and bounds in his chosen career despite suffering all possible handicaps of background. This inspired the students to strive to achieve success in the field they loved, and to cast aside all obstacles through the force of determination alone.

In the interactive question answer session that followed, Dr. Sumanth answered with zest a volley of thoughtful and imaginative questions, ranging from the various facets of the Indian Education System and his first programme on radio, to his opinions on the ongoing football season. After this fiery discussion, the students dispersed, inspired and filled with a will to follow their true dreams, their minds and hearts saturated with new ideas and zeal after yet another inspiring Horizon Club Guest Lecture.


December 2015

Calamity brings people together, such was the rain turned floods Chennai recently faced. Our speaker was of one such peoplewho actively takes part in environmental and societal activities. Mr Nityanand Jayaraman has a long history of social service who strongly believes that the nation can be revolutionised through the medium of youngsters, he sparked in us the desire to direct our incentives for the betterment of our surroundings.

The session began with an interactive quiz as the rapport built between him and the students until the entire room was buzzing with enthusiastic dialogue. We learnt the exact reasons for the floods which are; Encroachment, clogging of waterways and inefficient government. He took us back in time to the days of the healthy Adyar where the nature acted as a protector against its own wrath; which range from the beach dunes which were barriers to salty air and catchment for rain, mangroves which were excellent storm stoppers, to the lake diverse Adyar.

Today the soil is unable to breathe due to the vast diversity of pollutants and plastic, from the days of ample greenery now a days there is ample plastic. He presented on the reasons for the unaccounted damage and clarified that these in truth are not unprecedented rains , due to the fact that it isn’t scientifically valid against the rough 200 years modern weather data. We saw case studies of water bodies and how they have been abused such as the Chembarambakkam lake at the banks of which - is found the Hyundai factory , Okkiyam Thuraipakkam- the ‘’MAGNIFICENT’’ IT corridor of the intellectuals. It was pointed out that those companies and idealised members of the creamy society are the true perpetrators of this violence as they enjoy power.

The session concluded with Mr Jayaraman being bombarded with questions to which he earnestly answered to his ability. Through the course of his talk , he emphasised that ‘’damage done is done’’ hence we should look for a sustainable future.
This meet left a mark in the minds of students and pried open our eyes that hearts beat as one ; for Chennai , for India and for the world.



November 2015

In the 4th Horizon Club meeting, Bala Vidya Mandir had the pleasure of inviting Mr.V.S.Sambandan, the Chief Administrative Officer, The Hindu Centre for Politics and Public Policy, as a guest speaker to address the gathering. He holds a PhD degree in Economics from the University of Madras, and a MBA degree from the Bournemouth University, UK. During his career as a journalist he has reported and written extensively on economics and social issues and served as The Hindu’s foreign correspondent in Sri Lanka for six years during the Sri Lankan separatist conflict.

Mr.V.S.Sambandan spoke on the importance of Continuous Learning, Inter- Personal Relations and Communication Skills. He started his speech explaining what, why, where and how the straight line is the shortest route, that  gives maximum output with minimum effort. Mr.V.S.Sambandan brought out the difference between pondering and asking, and said that only after pondering, one can ask a question. He felt that the job of a journalist is to present how people react to situations. The art of journalism lies in putting things in proper perspective.

Mr.V.S.Sambandan exemplified the art of communication through movies, cartoons, songs and books; he demonstrated that their success depended upon how effectively they communicated and struck a chord with the audience.
Mr.Sambandan spoke about achieving greatness as the mission of one’s life, and elucidated this through the life of the great cricketer, Sunil Gavaskar, who was his greatest inspiration.

The journalist said that social media was an excellent platform to put forth grievances of people. He told the audience that journalists have multi- directional access to information, which minimizes the chances for misinformation.

With this Mr.V.S.Sambandan ended his educative speech on the topic. The students felt that the speech was lucid, hilarious, interesting, thought- provoking, informative and inspiring.



A wise man once said, “The best way to a man's heart is through his stomach." This cannot be more true in the hospitality industry.

On Friday, the 4th of September we witnessed an enthralling talk from Chef Reggie Mathew on the abc's of hotel management. One would be very surprised to know how much work is put in to make that one portion of crème brûlée served on your table. Chef Reggie told us that every aspect in a hotel is very important in keeping a customer happy and that's why in the training course for hotel management he had to learn how to make beds, do the laundry, serve, clean a table and many more. Apparently one has to take a 3 year course to simply learn how to remove the poisonous glands and make a dish of Fugu- a fish, in Japan. Earlier to this session we thought all that there was to being a chef was learning a recipe and following it to the ‘T’. But there's a large amount of thought put into every dish we see on the menu of a restaurant. The reason why we don't see those many cheese filled dishes in Chennai is not because the chefs don't cook continental cuisine, but because cheese is hard to digest and maybe even unhealthy to eat in a city with tropical climate! Having been to our famous 'big fat Indian weddings' we definitely know the quantity of food required to keep the guests happy so we were naturally curious about what would happen when you run out of food. The Chef cited a personal experience for all of us and told us that in that particular function he was serving, over 200 extra guests turned up! What they then did was contact all the restaurants nearby and work out dishes together. He told us that when in crisis, all hotels pitch in and help each other out as they never know when they might need the favour as well.

"What is the mark of a good chef?", a student asked. "Is it their Michelin star rating or their secret recipe Biryani's taste?" Chef Reggie Mathew said “I personally think the healthier the chef, the tastier their food." After over an hour of engrossing, humorous and interactive session we were forced to say goodbye to Chef Reggie Mathew and we left the AV room, fully convinced about the different prospects connectedto this great industryand the endeavours required to reign at the zenith.



Dr.S.R.Ramanan gave a wonderful and intellectual speech about Observation and forecasting as a part of the Horizon club meeting held on 21.08.2015 .The children  gained knowledge regarding observations, frequency of air flow, humidity, wind speed, visibility and how they play a vital role in our life. The children were enlightened on the various types of thermometers and how predicting the weather in India is difficult as it has a tropical climate. Awarness on how to pursue the subject of meteorology as career was created.He concluded his speech by stressing on the point that that weather and climate are not something to be given just a cursory glance, but it was indeed crucial to our livelihood.


JULY 2015

Three feelings ambition, motivation and inspiration – these were experienced by the students on Friday 24 , July 2015 in the lecture delivered as a part of the Horizon Club . The 11th students were moved by the talk which was delivered by the esteemed CAPTAIN R.C Rajan who took us back in time on the history of emergence of ‘’flying’’ and walked with us through the First and Second War on how aeronautics moulded the world into a better and smaller place.He shared with us his experience as a trainee pilot, teacher and the rise in his career by perseverance and passion. Students gained knowledge on requirements to become a pilot and posts available in this field. What marked this session was that the students had the chance to watch the actual footage of the Pearl harbour bombing in 1941. The most interesting part was his ability to strike awe, desire and fascination in our hearts. There was an interactive question and answer session where students actively took part. CAPTAIN Rajan’s presentation undoubtedly caused students to envision and be associated with the flying world.




Mr.T.S.Krishnamurthy , Former Chief Election Commissioner of India  was the guest speaker for the Horizon Club meeting on Friday 9th January, 2015. He shared his vast experience with the students of Class XI. He spoke about the importance of communication and decision making to attain success and emphasized on Courage, Confidence and Communication to be the keys to success. He shared experiences from his personal life and brought forth the thought that one should have the courage to stick by their decision and the fact that one does not have to be impolite to convey one’s views. The students found the session interesting and asked him questions based on his views about the current scenario in the country.



GUEST SPEAKER: Mr. Siddharth Hande - A social entrepreneur                       

The Horizon Club meeting on Wednesday 12th November, 2014 witnessed Mr.Siddharth Hande , young entrepreneur share his experiences and expertise with the students of Class XI. He heads N spatial, Kabadiwala Connect and Supportive , all organizations aimed at a social cause.He spoke about social entrepreneurship and how important it is to identify and pursue one’s aspirations and not just follow others. The session was interactive and informative for the students.



GUEST SPEAKER: Dr. Madhu Thottapillil- Orthopaedic surgeon and  Sports Medicine specialist

The students of Class XI attended the Horizon Club meeting on Thursday 4th of September, 2014.The guest speaker was Dr. Madhu Thottapillil, an orthopaedic surgeon and a Sports Medicine specialist. He is the team doctor for the Chennai Super Kings cricket team.He spoke to the students on the importance of Sports in their day to day life. Dr. Madhu related incidents from his life to bring forth the thought that one should avail every opportunity that comes his way and work hard to make it a success. He also emphasized on the importance of being attentive in class for each lesson is important in the pursuit of one’s career.



GUEST SPEAKER: Dr. Radhakrishnan, Additional Director General of Police, CID and Civil Supplies, Tamil Nadu

The students of Class XI attended the Horizon Club meeting on Friday 22nd of August, 2014.The guest speaker was Dr. Radhakrishnan, Additional Director General of Police, CID and Civil Supplies, Tamil Nadu. He spoke to the students on security and sense of National responsibility. Dr. Radhakrishnan emphasized on the fact that as students they should aspire to be leaders and set as an example for others to follow. He gave instances from his personal life to bring forth the thought that no matter how adverse the situation it is our sheer will to succeed that makes us a leader.


JULY 2014

GUEST SPEAKER: Mr. Darius Bahadurji, Chairman and Managing Director, Vantage Advertising Private Limited

The students of Class XI attended the Horizon Club meeting on Thursday 24th of July, 2014.The guest speaker was Mr. Darius Bahadurji, Chairman and Managing Director, Vantage Advertising Private Limited. He spoke to the students on how to cope with success and failure. Mr.Bahadurji gave instances from his personal life to bring forth the thought that it is not necessary to succeed every time but to face failures and learn from them.

He expressed that it is fine to be unreasonable at times when you are leading an organization and at the same time one should know to employ the correct people for the job. Mr. Bahadurji reiterated the fact that in a business, one should keep an escape route available in case of an eventuality. The session was thought provoking and the students could relate to the views that Mr. Bahadurji expressed.