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Chatuni Uduwela is a 23 year old graduate in Law, and an undergraduate in Economics and a young professional who works part-time as an intern at a research firm, a News Anchor and a teacher of Drama and Communication. She expressed her opinion on work, and how being a “working woman” has inspired her.

A working woman?

Chathuni feels uneasy to call herself a working woman. Why?  “Women do all kinds of work, mostly full time, and come home to work some more. And I, with my part-time work and (ongoing) education, barely qualify!” she explained.

She is happy with her academic and professional careers and describes them as being fruitful. “So far, I’ve been blessed with exceptional opportunities: each of which affirm that women, even in the developing world, are steadily chipping away at glass ceilings and breaking away from stereotypes that once held them back,” she added.

Thank you free education!

“Everything isn’t perfect, but to follow the footsteps of exemplary women is a privilege,” said Chathuni. She is grateful to be living in times where women are acknowledged as able, whether to lead entire nations, take the helm in public or private service, or to ensure a better future for our progeny.  She finds this progress both humbling and inspiring.

But she does not believe the situation that prevails is a picture of perfection. She believes that there is much space for progress to be made.

“At the same time, there remains much to be achieved; more people in need of inspiration, guidance and support. Women are key to filling this lacuna. People’s economic prospects are only as limited as the opportunities before them, and I believe these hurdles can be collectively overcome. Having spent decades receiving free education, I feel it imperative that I, too, pitch in,” she said.

Sharing skills and empowering

Chuthuni began her career where her passion lies: Elocution.

“In a time when English is the currency of choice in workplaces, and a necessity for upward social mobility, I teach Drama and Communication,” she explained.

For her the ability to communicate is important, and a skill that needs to be developed.  “Having benefited immensely from my own training, whether as a freelance television host and news anchor, a debater, or speaker pure and simple, I believe that this skill set needs sharing. The impact I make each day is minuscule, but crucial to those learners whose confidence, skills and eventual prospects improve as a result,” she explained.

In pursuit of economic justice

Young and motivated, Chathuni aspires to see social and economic justice. She sees working with children as part of the solution to reach this objective.

“To work with children of any age is an immensely fulfilling thing, but I’m equipping myself to also help remedy the issues underlying inequality, through the pursuit of Economic Justice, towards which my undergraduate education is geared.”

She is grateful to the Sri Lankan education system for offering her free education, and is committed to contribute to the social development in her capacity. For her it is a way to pay the debt she owes to the system which has offered her an education enabling her to reach her goals.

“Who knows? With these pursuits perhaps, I’ll finally succeed in repaying debts owed to free education,” she said.