VIJAYAWADA: A social activist and youth parliamentarian, Rishitha Jaladi has gained recognition on an international platform as she has completed the Study of United States Institutes (SUSI)-2021 programme. A native of Nidamanuru village near Vijayawada, the 21-year-old has been involved in community service for the past six years. She has laid special focus to help government school students and children from marginalised communities. Rishitha has conducted several awareness sessions on sex education, drug abuse and gender equality.
Her work to serve girls and underprivileged students secured her a place in the Youth Leadership Exchange programme held in the United States of America. SUSI is a five-week programme funded by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs whose mission is to promote mutual understanding between the people of the US and other countries. The lead partner for the programme is Meridian International Center, while the host institution is FIUTS (Foundation for International Understanding Through Students) at the University of Washington, Seattle.
Currently, Rishitha is studying MBA at KL Business School in Vijayawada. Her father Jaladi Ramachandra Rao, an LIC agent, and mother Rajasri are from Nidamanuru.
Besides social service, Rishita has gained wide recognition for her oratory skills during her speech in the Parliament Central Hall in 2021 and received applause from Prime Minister Narendra Modi himself.As a student leader representing India, her study was on education and future of work focusing on building communication and leadership skills in a global environment. As part of her visit to the US, she participated in lectures, collaborative discussions, small group and individual work, site and corporate visits, and informal cultural activities with Americans.
Speaking to TNIE, Rishitha explained, “SUSI programme was conducted in a hybrid format, including a virtual component from June 21 to July 30, 2021, and an in-person component in November 2022. After the virtual sessions, I worked on a community action project (CAP) ‘Value-ED’ that aims to create awareness about the importance of value education and skill development in local schools at the most basic level.”
She has received several other awards, including ‘Jnanabheri’ cash award of `1,00,000 in 2018 from the then Chief Minister of AP and a special appreciation award from the Governor in 2019. She also bagged second prize in the National Level Declamation Contest, held by the Ministry of Sports in 2019, in addition to several other awards.