A Professor (Retd.) in the Department of History and Coordinator, Centre for Tourism Management in Dibrugarh University, Dr. Shiela Bora holds a Ph.D.degree from Gauhati University in Assam. Having completed her Bachelors degree with Major in History from Loreto House College in Calcutta, she was awarded a Master’s degree in History from Gauhati University. She is the recipient of the Gauhati University gold medal, as well as the prestigious S.K. Bhuyan Memorial prize, for securing the first class first position in History in the M.A. examination in 1970. Post her retirement in Dibrugarh University, Prof. Bora has been appointed Guest Faculty in the Departments of History and the Department of Women’s Studies in Gauhati University.
Dr. Bora has traveled extensively in the United States as a two-time recipient of the Fulbright scholarship from the United States Foundation of India (USEFI). In 1989 she visited Yale University, Connecticut, USA, as a senior post-doctoral research scholar, to work on the “Impact of the American Baptist Missionaries on Women of North-East India.” During this visit she was invited to deliver lectures on her subject of research in the Yale and Vanderbilt Universities and also to address the Board of Ministries at Valley Forge. She was awarded the Fulbright scholarship for a second time in 1996 when she was affiliated to the Divinity School at Harvard University as a Visiting Lecturer where she taught Women’s History for a period of two years. Her lectures won for her, great acclaim amongst the student community at Harvard.
A life member of the Indian History Congress and the North-East India History Association, Prof. Shiela Bora was greatly honoured when she was was elected President for the XXVI session of the North-East India History Association.held at Kokrajhar in 2005. Currently she is a member from India, on the Board of International Advisors for “The Journal of Women’s History”, published from Ohio State University, USA. She has delivered several lectures in foreign Universities. Some of her notable lectures and conferences abroad include lectures in Oxford University, Vanderbilt University, U. S. A. and Yale University, U. S. A. She also participated as an invitee in the Global Conference on ‘Building a Worldwide Movement for Democracy’ in 1999 and was a signatory to the Draft Declaration on Democracy and Human Rights.
Dr. Bora has completed a project entitled , Subnationalism and Youth of North-East India, that had been sponsored by the Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Government of India, New Delhi. The report of the study that had been undertaken in the three States of Arunachal Pradesh, Assam and Meghalaya, had been submitted to the concerned Ministry in October, 2007 and has been published in book form as, Youth at the Crossroads: A Study of North East India.
Dr. Bora has numerous publications to her credit. Some of her well known publications include:
- Student Revolution in Assam (1917-1947), in which she highlights the important role of the students of Assam during India’s Freedom Struggle.
- Adhunik Europe published by the Gauhati University Text Book Coorindation Committee in 1980. The second edition was published in 1992. The third edition was republished in 2016 as Europor Buronji.
- The Story of Tourism: An Enchanting Journey Through India’s North-East, published by UBS Publishers and Distributors, New Delhi.
- Paryatanar Ruprekha: Uttar Purbanchalar Itihas Aaru Sanskritir Patabhumi. Published by Banalata, 2005.
- Historiography in North East India : Assessing Suryya Kumar Bhuyan: This was a paper presented in a symposium to mark the birth anniversary of Dr. S. K. Bhuyan in 1994 and published by the North East India History Association in 2000.
- Emergence of Feminism and Feminist Nationalism in Assam: Role of Chandra Prabha Saikiani and the Asom Pradeshik Mahila Samiti (1926-47). Published by North East India History Association in 2013.
- Destination Meghalaya and Destination Assam, form a part of the syllabus for the Hospitality Management Course for IGNOU.
- Kanaklata Barua: A monograph on one of India’s youngest martyrs in the freedom struggle. Published by National Book Trust of India.
Prof. Bora had been a Member of the National Consultative Committee for the UGC’s Programme of Capacity Building for Women in Higher Education, till the withdrawal of the programme.