As a passionate Canadian, rooted in the multi-cultural heritage of New Brunswick, Indu has contributed to New Brunswick's development at multiple levels. After immigrating to Canada in 1969, Varma earned her Bachelor of Education degree from Mount Allison University and began teaching in 1970. Varma's numerous prestigious awards (Governor General's Award, Prime Minister's Award, Hilroy Fellowship Award and Marshal McLuhan Award) tell the story of her passion, her pioneering work in using computer technology and the internet effectively through telecommunication projects, which inspired and engaged countless children in active learning at elementary, middle and high school levels.
Throughout her successful 37-year teaching career, Varma focused on proactively improving learning conditions for children and working conditions for the teachers of New Brunswick by assuming leadership roles at various levels that reached far beyond her classroom. As an elected leader, president of the New Brunswick Teachers' Association from 2005 to 2007, her vision, passion, dedication and commitment inspired her colleagues, and influenced the decision makers.
Some of the visible gains that reflect her work include the New Brunswick Government's grant of a personal notebook computer to each teacher in 2006, class size reduction of four over four years beginning in 2006, CAD 15 million to address the compelling issue of class composition, and CAD 40 million dedicated to Innovative Learning Fund.
As an effective communicator, problem solver and a collaborative team player, Varma worked in partnership with educators, government officials, cabinet ministers and premiers of both political parties to create a shared vision that has put our children first. Through her gentle and persuasive efforts, Varma has contributed to raising the profile of education in New Brunswick.