“It is during our darkest moments that we must Focus to see the light.”
-Dr. Alexander Karakkal “81 years of content life”
Hailing from humble beginnings, proud son of Mathulla Kurivulla and Mariama, and a beloved brother to four sisters., Dr Alexander Karakkal was a force to reckon with, looming larger than life in every way. He completed his primary education from Karakkal LP school and his high school education from Peringara Prince Marthandaverma high school.
He went on to complete his degree and post-graduation from Tiruvilla Marthoma College and Trivandrum University College. He also served as the Union Speaker in Marthoma College. From a very young age, Dr. Alexander Karakkal displayed a prodigious proclivity and affinity towards the oratory arts. He consistently worked on it [maybe some examples here?], but his breakout moment was when he brought back the trophy of the prestigious Inter-collegiate elocution competition to Marthoma College, after a long drought of 20 years.
He continued his impressive streak of victories there by racking up numerous wins in various elocution competitions and essay competitions. His magnus opus was his performance and consequent victory in the Tagore centenary prize, for which Alexander Karakkal received the prize from the former Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi herself. At the University level, Alexander Karakkal was a recipient of Sajeevothama gold medal, CV Chandra Shekaran gold medal, AM Varkey Memorial Cup, Sri Narayana centenary debate competition and the All-India Speech Competition (conducted by Trivandrum Corporation). He also won the Lion’s International Essay Competition on World Peace.
In furtherance of his academic pursuits, he was awarded the prestigious Fulbright Scholarship, to aid his doctoral pursuit in Princeton University and during this time he got the opportunity to interact with American Presidents like Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, Jimmy Carter and also Senator Adlai Stevenson the third, Chester Bowles, John Kenneth Galbraith, Arthur Schlessinger and Walter Johnson. One of his crowning achievements was when he won the American Historical Association award from President Clinton for outstanding contribution to American history research.
After he was awarded his doctoral thesis from Princeton University, he returned to India to follow his passion to be an educator in his home state. Back in India, he became the Head of Department of History in Pathanamthitta Catholicate College and later he became the Principal of Kottayam Baselious College. After his long years of service in the educational sphere in Kerala, he was called by the then Governor P Shiv Shankar to serve as the first pro-Vice Chancellor of Malabar University (Kannur). He was subsequently confirmed as the Vice Chancellor as well.
Being the first Pro Vice-Chancellor and a brilliant educator, he was pivotal in the rapid growth of Kannur University. Eventually, when he retired, as a token of his outstanding contribution and his irrefutable body of work, all the political parties joined together to give him a grand farewell. All the while, during his many years as an educator, he never failed to give back to the society, and he took on various important roles in the society. He was a Princeton visiting fellow, member of KTDC Director board, Telecom advisory committee member, LIC board inspection committee chairman, President of American History Congress, Chairman of the American History Research Association, Member of Archeology and Cultural Department and a consultant editor of Journal of American History.
Dr Alexander Karakkal was a very pious and god-fearing person and was very active in the church. In recognition of his consistent and unrelenting contributions to the church and society at large, the Malankara Orthodox Church bestowed upon him the honorary title of ‘Sabhavalsalan’, of which was presented to him by Mathews I Catholicos during the Catholicate Platinum Jubilee function. He was also the longest serving elected member of Malankara Orthodox Sabha managing committee (45 years).
During his time as the Secretary of the Orthodox Sabha, he enacted wide ranging reforms that transformed the very fabric of the Sabha. He had the rare honour of serving alongside six Catholicos. In 1972, he was the General Convener of the 19th death centenary celebrations of St. Thomas, which was conducted in utmost splendor.Wife: Valsa.
Children: Bindu – Architect Koshy Alex,
Binju – Deepa Mary Panicker.
Grandchildren: Varsha, Varun, Darshan, Diya.
Tagore centenary prize
ശതാബ്ദിയുടെ നിറവിൽ ശ്രീ അലക്സാണ്ടർ കാരയ്ക്കൽ സാറിന് കുടുംബാംഗങ്ങളുടെ സ്നേഹോപഹാരം .
ഈ ബുക്ക് ഡൌൺലോഡ് ചെയ്യാൻ ഇവിടെ ക്ലിക്ക് ചെയ്യുക .
ഈ ബുക്ക് ഡൌൺലോഡ് ചെയ്യാൻ ഇവിടെ ക്ലിക്ക് ചെയ്യുക .
SCHOLARSHIPS, HONOURS AND AWARDS
First Prize : Tagore Centenary Gold Medalist-All India Essay Competition on "Tagore as a Universal Man" by the Ministry of Cultural Affairs
Gold Medal : Kerala University - Inter Collegiate Elocution Competition -
UNESCO Prize : Winner - Best Essay " Is Peace Attainable"
First Prize : UN Quiz conducted by United States Information Service, Trivandrum
Fellowship : American Studies Research Centre, Hyderabad
1977 - 1981
Fellowship : University Grants Commission for Research Work from
Fellowship : Princeton University - Doctoral Research in History
Fellowship : Indian Council of Historical Research for Doctoral Study in History
Sabha Valsalan : Title from His Holiness Catholicos of the East – (The highest a lay man can aspire in the Malankara Syrian Orthodox Church)
U. S Award : Outstanding Historians Award of the American Government
Delegate : Represented India as the Guest of U.S. Government in the American Historians Annual Conference at LA, California May