When I was in class 12, I was sure that I did not want to do engineering as it was too common. I wanted to do something different, so two days after my board exams on March 29, 2013, I signed up for the chartered accountancy course. That day I chose to leave physics, chemistry, math and computer science at home and move towards a new journey.
I had filled the JEE mains form and no other form for an engineering entrance exam. The exam was held on April 7. I had almost forgotten all the formulae in the exam, but somehow I had made it. Then on June 16, I had appeared for the Common Proficiency Test (CPT). Fortunately, I had cleared both these exams with a good score.
On one hand, I had booked tickets for Indore to join the Integrated Professional Competency Coaching (IPCC) and on the other hand, my father checked my result for JEE. I was confused about what I should do, since I had just graduated from school and didn’t think that I was mature enough to make the decision on my own.
I finally chose to pursue metallurgical engineering at NIT Raipur.
When I joined college, I got the hostel E, room number 32. There were four people who shared the room including me. I believe that they were more talented than I was sometimes, since they could grasp certain concepts faster than I could.
Everything was great in the beginning then as it happens, we started fighting and it became difficult for me to adapt to the situation. However, room number 32 taught me a lot of things. It taught me how to eat, how to dress, how to talk and how to live. I learned what emotions are and how much one should open themselves up to others. The best part about that hostel was the amazing seniors we had. They taught me everything I needed to know to live life in a hostel.
During my second semester in college, I had an appendicitis operation and there were about 10 days left to complete notes, submit assignments and prepare for exams. I had three stitches on my stomach and had to dress my wound two times a day. I was not allowed to sit or climb stairs. I was not allowed to eat solid food or walk long distances. I somehow managed all that, but the worst part was when right before an exam I forgot the spelling of my own name. I didn’t know what I could do to pass it. In the exam, I attempted only a few questions and when I calculated my score, I thought I wouldn’t pass. I cried a lot that day. Even though I passed the exam, I realised the importance of my health during that time.
When I moved to hostel G into room number 311, I made friends for a lifetime. We made memories to cherish forever. We’d go for walks, to restaurants and learned to save money together.
I was also a part of the street play society and even though I may not be in contact with the two groups I performed with, but the confidence I gained from there has remained. Whether it was the journey to IIT Kharagpur or our performance at Marine Drive in Raipur, all of these experiences helped me grow.
However, not all my experiences were great. My internship at IIT Madras didn’t begin well. On the 10th day of my internship, I got a fracture and it became difficult to continue since there was a plaster on my leg up to my knee. But people helped me out and motivated me to continue. With everyone’s support, I completed my project successfully and the motivation I got from them would stay with me for life. When I joined college, I would walk with a stick. When I noticed people looking at me, I got the willpower to recover quicker.
If I have to talk about one of my favourite places in college, it is the central garden. I have laughed and cried over there with my best friend. Our auditorium was also a place which left its mark in my heart.
Besides the places in college, my fondest memories are with my friends. We’d call our parents at 10 pm to tell then that we’ve safely reached. But that’s when the actual fun would begin. The night outs and the discussions we’ve had during those times can’t be put into words.
During the placement season, instead of competing with each other, all we wanted was that we get placed. Some got good jobs while some didn’t. But what mattered was that we had each other’s back all the time.
I couldn’t get a good job and neither am I settled. But what I did learn there was how to struggle. I learned to live my life positively and to keep the negativity aside. My faculty at the college have taught us lessons that went way beyond academics. They taught us about choosing our careers, about how to tackle failure and much more.
I am not perfect, but at NIT Raipur, I could at least find the ingredients that could make my life a little closer to perfect. My college gave me something immaterial and I would always be grateful for it.