Joining an IIM is a dream of all MBA aspirants but not all get a chance to do that. India has 20 IIMs now and I got an opportunity to be a part of one of the baby IIMs, IIM Sirmaur.
After clearing CAT, I received an expression of interest for IIM Sirmaur in April. After nearly a month the window closed and the process of selection began. Our batch had got points in academics, work experience, diversity in academics i.e. points were given to people from arts, commerce, architecture and other non-engineering backgrounds. The whole process of selection took another month and the final list came out in June.
My name had come in the penultimate list and that gave me just a week to leave my job and reach. Though all of the events happened very fast, it was a big change when your life changes in a week. One of the Fridays I was working late for a deliverable and the very next afternoon I get a mail giving me the good news that I converted an IIM. I faced a huge dilemma which probably a lot of working MBA Aspirants might face – whether to keep working or to go for the MBA in a relatively new institute. With an experience of over 4 years, it was probably my last time appearing for CAT and leaving a stable job where you get paid at the end of the day with a doubt that after 2 years, you have to go through the placement process again, made me wonder. But at the end of the day, it was an IIM. So I decided to take a leap of faith and come.
Indian Institute of Management, Sirmaur is in Paonta Sahib, Himachal Pradesh which is a small industrial town located on the border of Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh. Located just beside Yamuna River, the campus has a wonderful view of mountains all around. Most people travel to Dehradun and get a cab to Paonta Sahib which takes around two hours. Chandigarh and Shimla are the other cities close by.
After coming here, I came to know that most people from our batch have a varied background and there are fresh graduates as well as experienced. The experience ranges from few months to many years. Being in a class of 67 people with such a mix of people vanished the doubts I had. The faculty is mostly from IIM Lucknow and it has been such an opportunity to learn from few of the best teachers in the country. We have gotten a great bunch of seniors who have been very supportive and trying their best that we get better opportunities than them.
With just the third batch, IIM Sirmaur has just started growing but the two weeks here has made me realise that big or small, IIM’s brand value is not just in the name but because of the quality of education the students get. It has been an exciting journey so far and hope to make the best of these two years to be at par with the best of the other IIMs.