Earlier this year London College of Communication (LCC) alumnus Sharma Ramasesha had the opportunity to revisit his college for the first time since he graduated in 1970!
Now 85 and living back in India, Sharma was in London on a family trip over the summer and took the opportunity to have a tour of the Elephant and Castle campus, led by Principle Lecturer, Bill Bradley.
Sharma started at LCC in 1968 when it was London College of Printing, on the Higher Diploma in Printing Management. Before coming to London, Sharma had had a varied career in India, originally gaining a degree in Science, before moving in motion picture photography, and later working as a medical photographer. His photography background led him to graphic reproduction, and he began working for the Government Press of the State of Karnataka, India, and it was this that led him to LCC, through a British Council scheme.
He remembers that the class had students from Spain, Sri Lanka, Ireland and India, as well as the UK, and he had many great stories from his time at LCC, including the time the teachers went on strike over wages;
A student meeting was convened and we decided by consensus that we should support the strike by sending a token contribution and a Telegram conveying our support. Coming from a country with a tightly state-controlled education system, I was pleasantly surprised to experience the highly liberal British system at that time.
Sharma graduated in 1970 and continued to work for the Government Printing Press for a further two decades. He is now engaged in DeskTop Publishing activities to keep himself busy and so even at 85 plus, he is active in printing, training, and editing publications.
After his tour, we asked Sharma what it was like to be back after all these years:
It was an immense pleasure to be in my Alma Mater when I visited the College after five decades. It gave me fond memories of my admission to the London College of Printing, in September 1968.
I am proud that I am an alumni of an Institution which was on the forefront of innovation in printing technology - I mean the College Stereos, a technology in the production of Image Carriers, then in great demand in huge volume printing, and this innovative approach continues to be so even to this day, as in Communication, not just Printing, with the evolution into digital and 3D printing.
I am glad to note that my College has kept abreast with changing the very concept of providing skills needed. The elaborate machinery and equipment which were needed for the earlier era, and which we used day in and day out, have become sort of museum pieces. However, I was glad to notice that they have been given the right place due to them.
My tour with the faculty when I visited the College was very interesting, and I am proud to be an alumnus of London College of Communication.