Brand Ambassador of Manipal’s American University of Antigua College of Medicine who is a cricket legend, Sir Vivian Richards, was a totally different experience. He is as charismatic in his brand-new avatar as he is in his avatar of the legendary cricketer. It was a cold, wet, breezy afternoon in Hyderabad on 17th December 2018, that I had my lifetime’s opportunity to have tea with Sir Vivian Richards the way he loves it, the Indian way that is. And I was mighty bowled over by his humility and sense of humour.
The fearless and ferocious player is performing an unmatched job of being the Ambassador of American University of Antigua (AUA) College of Medicine, a part of Manipal Education and Medical Group (MEMG), India’s largest higher education and healthcare service provider.
The ‘Made for Medicine’ Tour in India with Sir Vivian Richards is one of Manipal Education and Medical Group’s universities initiatives to reach out to aspiring medical students inviting them to learn about one of the most prominent medical schools in the Caribbean.
As one of the most celebrated cricket legends and as a native of the Caribbean, Sir Vivian Richards, role in promoting the college and his home country was passionately evident in the chat I have had with him after enjoying the tea. I was enamoured when he said, “Because of my connection with cricket and India, it was just easy for me to become the salesperson”!
He sold it to me! The 365 beaches, the vibrant and welcoming people, and an impressive facility for the students coming from all over the world for furthering their education. He emphasized on how the environment is conducive for learning and safe as well as enjoyable for the students, for the parents to feel relaxed about sending their children to AUA. He endorsed it by saying, “The students couldn’t be in a better environment, and the native of the island says so”.
This is the destination for aspiring students who are focused on taking up medicine and acquiring a global doctorate degree as well as turning out to be well-rounded doctors that we so much need. In a nutshell it is 'THE MEDICAL INSTITUTION' that provides 'quality medical education' for preparing 'world-class physicians' who can practice anywhere in the world.
AUA that was founded in 2004 with the commitment towards advancement in the field of medicine, is one of the only three medical schools in the Caribbean to gain the distinction of being approved, accepted, recognized and accredited by a diverse international medical education authorities or bodies, including the U.S. Department of Education, the UK General Medical Council and the Medical Council of India, among others.
Mamta Purbey, Executive Director of Enrollment Management & Institutional Analytics and Joshua R James, Associate Director of Admissions – India, with Sir Vivian Richards are a great team. Their passion in sharing all the information about AUA with the press as well as aspiring students and their parents during the event was evident thoroughly. They emphasized on the fair practices followed in the enrollment procedure with the importance on the personal touch extended by them in making new students and their parents comfortable from the very first day.
Unlike the chaotic scene in India, American University of Antigua (AUA) College of Medicine, a division of Manipal Education and Medical Group (MEMG), boasts of providing a fair chance to aspiring medical students from India of becoming doctors of supreme calibre. Doctors who have the energy and inspiration to deal with pressure, aptitude to allow free-flowing communication between them and their patients, and the service attitude to serve their communities back home or practice anywhere in the world. AUA is recognized by the Medical Council of India (MCI), which makes practicing in India after earning an MD a real possibility. AUA offers numerous scholarships to Indian citizens and residents to help offset the cost of medical education.
Meeting ‘The Legend’ wasn't in my list. No, I never dreamt of ever coming face to face with him. And that too in his newest avatar. We spoke of Indian tea, bright colours and how much his daughter loves bright colours, his Indian connection and his love for spicy food. Being a voice artist, I was impressed with his voice quality. I couldn’t resist from complimenting him for his powerful voice. His eyes sparkled with a childlike delight remembering his voicing work with Johny Walker and how much he loves being a faceless voice actor too. He promised to do more of it.
For now, as the voice of AUA, he is passionate to invite the Indian parents and students to explore the 17-acre campus in his home country as the ideal place for medical education. He promises a safe environment, a supportive community and the school’s hands-on training in transforming them into successful doctors who could be placed in any of the prestigious hospitals in the world.