My Placement Story: Part 1

by Roshana Naresh

Suddenly you get to be the headlines wherever you go. Your future plan becomes everyone’s life concern. You realise you are constantly being asked this one question, ’Are you planning to pursue higher studies or job?’ whatever your answer may be, they never fail to judge you. Trust me it takes some time, a little courage and a huge amount of thinking, before you get used to the question and answer confidently. When all of this begins happening, slowly reality sinks in, you start becoming conscious that you are to make a life decision, that your entire life is divided into paths and put before you, only with the destination blurred. ‘Which path to take ?’– a question that constantly haunts on and on. You raid the internet, get in touch with seniors, pull out long lost contacts, gather information in every way possible and you put all of it in your head for analysis. Finally you arrive upon a decision. But wait, that cannot happen, at least not so soon. Now is the entry of a family friend, who profoundly succeeds in making you doubt your decision. And then it happens All Over Again (There, it seems perfect now).

If all of this is happening to you right now, I am 90% sure you are in the last semester of third year engineering. The remaining 10% is for those premature life planners, my genuine advice is please do not ever think about all this before you’re in the 3rd year.

There are three categories of people, the first with the mindset – ‘I don’t care about placements’, the second – ‘my life relies on placements’, the third – ‘I have not yet discovered what to do with my life – MBA? MS? ME? Job?’ In my experience, every B.E/B.Tech student is bound to fall under any one of these categories at discrete instants of his/her ‘Engineering life’, though the pattern mostly starts from being a category three student and eventually getting pushed to being a don’t care (like in K-maps :P). There is one other set of people who jump out of this placement cyclone by deciding against it, being smart enough I must say.

THIRD YEAR BLUES

Until the middle of January 2015, I was blithe. Of course the news of one’s immediate seniors getting placed gives all sorts of ambivalent emotions, though not strong enough……yet. It was the time when our beloved seniors decided we required pre-placement preparations. I still remember the first day of those sessions, a tinge of fear crept in but I made sure not to let it grow any deeper. My class has never been so attentive, listening to the speech with rapt attention as though our sentencing was being announced. I could sense anxiety filling the air. Seniors were talking about companies, interviews, questions, answers, online tests, your attitude, walking style, the way you sit, etc., – suddenly I noticed myself being too self-conscious about my sitting posture. There was an unforgettable instance when the senior started drawing the floor layout of CUIC, and all of us started giggling. He marked the pathways in and out to help us get a mental picture of the place where each one of us were doomed to spend most of our final year – it was our biggest threat!

The first day was followed by many other sessions of placement preparation – including both theory and practical classes. Seniors arranged for lectures on important topics and helped us throughout. We were trained with mock group discussions and also they showed us a demo on how to enter the interview room, greet the interviewer, maintain a calm but confident tone, etc. Our seniors were so genuine and helpful that they did all of this not by force or compulsion but by their own will. This was continued for over a month and towards the end of the sessions we had a mock interview, which anyone could easily have confused for a real one, it was organised with utmost care.

I personally benefited a lot from these sessions, and thank you seniors for that. Facing placements was a challenge I was eager to take up. ‘Go away third year, come soon final year’ was what was going on in my mind.

To be continued