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The Silicon Review Asia

A Graduate Producing Mill

A Graduate Producing Mill

When Sujith Kumar, head of Human Resources at Infosys, was invited to a convocation ceremony, he expected it to be like any other convocation ceremony handing out degrees to graduates. He was surprised to learn that the ceremony was for the female mill workers at KPR Mills who had turned graduates. He later wrote in a social media post that nothing comes close to what KPR Mills is doing for its employees.

KPR Mills employs 58 full time teachers to educate their female employees in order to help them get certification required for higher education. The project began 14 years ago with 15-20 students has educated 24,356 girls. Others who have attended their convocation ceremonies over the years talk about the grit and determination of the female mill workers.

KPR is now tied with Tamil Nadu Open University and Alagappa University due to its full time teaching facility.

The managing director, P Nataraj mentioned the story of how they decided to educate their employees. He recalled, “One day, my brother K P Ramaswamy was interacting with employees when a woman employee expressed regret for not being able to continue her studies because of financial constraints. Since almost 80 percent of our employees live with us, we realised they have eight hours to spare. Why not arrange classes for them for two to four hours a day?”

The company encourages the workers to find better jobs after their education and do not expect them to stay with the mill forever as they want them to have better lives and uplift them and their families.


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