Thotegowda is a man with many feathers in his cap. His humility and his quiet personality keep those feathers hidden. Hailing from Chikkamaglur district of Karnataka, Thotegowda always dreamed of becoming a teacher. The need to provide for his family meant that he had to work while pursuing his studies; it also meant that he was forced to keep his dream aside, in his words, ‘change track’. Nevertheless, Thotegowda completed his B A in an evening college, followed by a B Ed from Bangalore University. It was only here that he got some free time to play sports he loved post-class hours including badminton and volleyball. He then went on to pursue a triple Masters via correspondence- an MA in Economics from Bangalore University, and MAs in History and Kannada- both from Mysore University- passing with flying colours. An achievement that he openly acknowledges he is most proud of in his life, was topping his 6th semester of B Ed.
Between 2006 and 2016, Thotegowda worked for different organizations including Standard Chartered Bank (2 years), as a cashier cum assistant accountant at a printing press and also as an operator at a business firm. Thotegowda even signed up for a BCom to get a good hold on accounting but the course was discontinued before he could complete it. In 2016, he joined Samvada as a coordinator of the Early Childcare and Education program at our creche that supported women garment labourers and their children. In 2020, when the creche was discontinued and looking at his meticulous, systematic work with banking, he was offered a role with the accounts department.
Thotegowda enjoys watching Kabaddi on TV, reading biographies and psychology books, and taking an interest in his children’s studies. He wishes he had access to career guidance as a young student that would have helped him decide a suitable career path for himself. Based on his experience, he hopes that young people today are able to receive timely career guidance. He still holds on to his dream of being a teacher one day.