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Memorable Manitobans: Gian P. Kaushal (1932-2004)

Educator, cultural ambassador.

Born at India on 12 May 1932, he began his career as an educator there in 1952, quickly making an impression with his unique teaching style and special rapport with his students and colleagues. From 1954 to 1964, he taught physics, chemistry, mathematics, botany, agricultural sciences, and zoology to higher secondary students. In the winter of 1964, he relocated to Saskatchewan, where he taught school first at Denzil and then at Pelly. His wife, Kastura, with whom he had two children, was also a teacher, and in 1967 the family moved to Beausejour where she taught biology at the senior high school and he physics, mathematics, and chemistry. He was eventually appointed the head of the science department there. During that time, he was responsible for piloting science programs for the Province of Manitoba, including “The Discovery Approach” and the development of a science curriculum for teachers of junior high school students.

During the course of his career, he received accolades for his contributions to the field of education. He was presented with a scholarship from the National Science Foundation of America to participate in the Harvard Project Physics program at Clark College in Atlanta, Georgia, and was also presented with the Award for Contribution and Meritorious Services for the Advancement of Science in the Province of Manitoba. Besides being recognized for his vision, determination, and courage, and for his advocacy for higher education, he was also known for his ability to connect with others. With his immigration to Canada, he was considered to be a trailblazer for many who emigrated from his community in India in subsequent years. He was able to transcend the boundaries of cultures and religions and was described as “a Hindu amongst Hindus, a Sikh amongst Sikhs, and a Christian among Christians.”

He died at Edmonton, Alberta on 23 September 2004.

Sources:

Obituary, Winnipeg Free Press, 28 September 2004.

This page was prepared by Lois Braun.

Page revised: 25 September 2020

Memorable Manitobans

Memorable Manitobans

This is a collection of noteworthy Manitobans from the past, compiled by the Manitoba Historical Society. We acknowledge that the collection contains both reputable and disreputable people. All are worth remembering as a lesson to future generations.

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