Hello friends, hope you are doing great. Even if you’re not, don’t worry. It’s just a phase of life and will pass away. Just keep up your ‘smart’ (more important than hard) work consistently. It has almost been a year since I completed my graduation. However, there hasn’t been a single day when I didn’t miss my college days, especially the hostel days. Recently declared GATE results and the emotions following it brought back many memories of my four years of graduation. From targeting the seniors and friends who scored high for unending parties in college canteens, to accompanying those who found their inner peace in smoking joints at Thapri rather than looking at their results, this is one exam which one may feel to be the make or break for his/her engineering career. This was the case in our college at least, but I guess it might be similar in other engineering colleges as well. I used to feel sad seeing the aspirations and hopes of my friends come dashing onto the grounds of reality, and what followed the result was even more saddening. Cursing the college, its management, its placement team with simultaneous increase in the intake of nicotine and alcohol to lessen the pain of failure never worked, dear friends. The point is, things aren’t that bad after all! If one can survived the gruelling four years of engineering, I am sure that he/she can face and eventually overcome any damn challenge life throws at them. It’s just that one needs to work out the things using a different route and while doing so, learn few lessons which will come handy later on.
Like everyone, I have learnt a lot from my college life. It has given me everything which one can ask for. However, the journey was not always a merry one, and it was during my tough times that I learnt my life’s lessons and laid the foundations of my future success on them. This is the main motive behind this blog. Call it an advice from a person who has already traversed the path you are travelling, or anything; here are the certain points which will always help you in your graduation life, and some alternate career paths available apart from the most commonly known ones.
Let’s start with the lesson points.
- Always have at least 2 back up plans: The point of paramount importance, whatever you do, always have back ups. Uncertainty of future has its own adventure, but without proper planning, it might land you on a tricky situation. The reason why I started my blog with the example of the GATE exam is that students usually don’t plan beyond GATE (and campus interviews). Evaluating the conditions in and around our college, it’s not easy to crack the coveted exam. Since there’s a factor of uncertainty, I believe one should definitely have air bags activated to save their career in case it crashes with harsh reality. The latter half of the blog deals with it.
Keep building your resume : From your second year itself, start building your resume. It has two sides – the academic side, and the co-curricular + extra-curricular side. Make the utmost use of the free wi-fi provided to you, not only by downloading movies, but also by completing online courses from reputed institutions like MIT’s Open Course Ware http://ocw.mit.edu/index.htm , NPTEL courses http://nptel.ac.in/noc/ and edX online certification courses https://www.edx.org/ to strengthen your resume’s academic facet. They are abundant on the net and it takes only 1-2 hrs/day. When you will be facing the interview panel ,these certifications will give you a definite upper edge. To strengthen your co-curricular + extra-curricular side, make sure to get involved either as a participant or as an organizer in as many events occurring in your campus as possible. The exposure which they provide hones your soft skills to the levels required in the corporate sector. Without soft skills, no organization will select a candidate even if he/she has good technical knowledge.
Stop blaming and complaining: Will taking part in blame games and non-stop complaining about the ‘factors’ which should have helped, or worked in your favour, going to get you a job? Is it going to get you better grades? Is it going to help you improve your exam score after the results are out? The answer is a simple NO. This is the biggest mistake which we do. The bitter truth of the world is only you are responsible for your present state. No one owes the responsibility of your career, apart from you! Get this thing clear. The more you complain the more time and energy you waste. So, no matter how much it tempts and excites you to get indulged, stop spreading negativity around your career.
Never let out your plans if they haven’t materialized: One should avoid boasting about one’s future plans or even casually sharing it with people. You never know who’s keeping you in their mind. Achieve what you’re planning, and then announce. This is an important point. Remember it.
Don’t expect to mint money immediately after you leave the college: Minting money is something which shouldn’t be our main objective simply because most of us won’t be able to. We aren’t graduating from IITs / reputed NITs / IIMs that companies will offer us lakhs & lakhs of rupees as our starting salary. If that would have been our wish, we ought to have worked hard in our 11th & 12th Since we didn’t, it’s better to keep the expectations real.