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Research as a career is rewarding as you get to discover something cool but stressful, as experiments fail most of the time. One has to find ways to relieve stress, maintain a healthy brain and come back with novel ideas/approaches. To me, hiking, running, and helping others have been very helpful in managing the ups and downs of my research and personal life.

It was the fall of 2011, and I was in the last year of my Ph.D. when I felt a need to find a way to foster science and education in Jammu and Kashmir. I am lucky to have found good mentors and friends over time, and these people have contributed immensely to my personal and professional growth. Things might have changed now; in those days (early 2000), most of us were not sure what next, what are the various career opportunities in science, and how to pursue science. There are many challenges in our part of the globe; schools, colleges, and universities are often shut down due to hartals, curfews, and lockdowns. Unfortunately, infrastructure and resources are limited, and the education system is relatively at par.

The students of Jammu and Kashmir are highly talented and hardworking but lack mentorship and exposure. I would say JKScientists was born of the idea of finding a unique way to help, mentor, and foster science and education among the youth of Jammu and Kashmir. Change doesn’t come overnight, as there is a saying, “Rome was not built in a day,” but one has to start and then gather like-minded people and be consistent. Again, I am lucky to have met those like-minded and sincere people who are the main force behind JKScientists. In 2011, Facebook was relatively new and trending among youth, and I thought of starting a Facebook group called “Kasher Scientists. A few years ago, we decided to rename it “JKScientists,” and now we are a registered public organization in the US. Initially, I added the people I knew, and the chain continued, and today we are more than 13K members, who represent the students, scientists, scholars, technologists, and teachers of Jammu and Kashmir. It has been a decade of growth, learning, and mentoring, and the impact of our programs has been life-changing.

Founder & Director:
Dr Syed Mubarak Hussain