"The most difficult decisions we’re faced with are not about success or failure but finding the courage to simply try again.” - what can be a better example to bring this quote to life other than Adya Shakti’s journey from 39% to 98% in CAT to make it to one of India's top B-Schools, MDI Gurgaon!
As they say, “Impossible...is nothing!” And that's exactly what Adya has always believed in. Having been brought up in a small town in Bihar, opportunities came rare and any kind of support such as tuition or coaching weren’t available. Although a topper throughout, she was clueless on what career to pursue after school. Following the crowd, as most of our story goes, she ended up doing engineering. For a person who always wanted to achieve great heights and do something different in life, this decision didn't seem very right! Moreover, as a topper, it was quite unsettling for her to come to peace with the fact that she was pursuing her engineering from a tier-III college.
After passing out of college, she decided to write CAT for the first time. Having scored a mere 39%, it did make a dent in her confidence but it could not discourage her from believing in herself.
Right after college, she went on to work for a small startup in a sales role, after having rejected her offer from campus placement in an MNC. The startup was at its initial phase and hence, required demanding work hours. The job was not paying her well and was just enough to make ends meet. "This is not what I wanted in my life. I have got to correct it!", she thought to herself, every single day! Grappled with financial constraints and being tight on schedule, she could not join coaching to prepare for CAT. She started her preparation again, all by herself. She would study in metros and would use free materials available online like Unacademy and Youtube videos, Bullseye test series and others to prepare.
While she would work harder every single day, the thought of scoring a low percentile again never left her mind. And in those times, she would only think, "Dream and dream until one day you reach your destination", she mentions.
Amidst all the preparation for CAT for which she left no stone unturned, she also started to sit for various other exams like Bank PO, and government PSU exams like Coal India, MSTC. She would qualify these exams with flying colours every time but could not clear the interviews for some reason or the other.
November arrived and it was time to write CAT for the second time. The only thought that crossed her mind on the D-Day was to give her best. Well, hard work always pays off and Adya scored a whopping 98%! When results came out, she knew she had crossed the first hurdle and it was time to give her best in the upcoming interviews. Juggling between a hectic job schedule and her preparations for interviews, she finally made it to one of her dream colleges, MDI Gurgaon.
After coming to MDI, it was overwhelming at first to compete with brilliant minds. But she ensured that she makes the right use of all the available resources and opportunities - whether it was participating in competitions or working on live projects. She then went on to intern at one of the most sought after internships with ABG and that proved to be a great experience in terms of learning and exposure!
Adya loves reading and she says that MDI’s reading space/library is her favourite spot on campus. When asked about the best opportunity she feels MDI has gifted her with, she says, it was being a part of the counselling cell of MDI. Here, she gets an opportunity to help people who are struggling with their thoughts and emotions. And when people come back to thank her for listening to what they have got to say, it gives her immense satisfaction!