Isha Garg’s Journey To IIM Rohtak
“Agar kisi cheez ko dil se chaaho to puri qayanat usey tumse milane ki koshish mein lag jaati hai”
These words quite aptly capture my journey to one of the prestigious business schools in India – Indian Institute of Management, Rohtak.
When I failed twice to get admission in an IIT, I was asked to choose between B.Sc (Mathematics Hons.) at Panjab University, Chandigarh and B.Tech in a college that I was not fond of! Being clear of my choices and of the fact that I won’t be allowed to attempt JEE again, I swallowed the bitter pill. Engineering was, in itself, easier to flow with, than the environment and the people around me in my college. People were nice (well, they mostly are!), it’s just that I could not find people whose thoughts resonated with those of mine.
Anyway, I started taking part in a lot of competitions and in organising fests to fill the void. It was at the end of the third year, precisely July 2016, when after having organised some events successfully, I realised that I wanted to go for management. But this time, I wasn’t ready to settle for less. I sat for placements as a back-up and got placed in Sapient Global Markets in August 2016. Now, I started researching on how to get into a premier b-school. It was only in August that I realised that CAT 2016 is scheduled for the first week of December and I had very less time to prepare! I joined a coaching institution too but quitted after attending just one session as I didn’t find their teaching methods suiting me. Quite determined now, I started preparing on my own.
Throughout my preparation phase, I had people coming to me, now and then, blabbering things like cracking CAT is not a layman’s job; you need a proper coaching for it; proper direction and all sorts of things.
One thing that I’ve learnt, after living 6 years away from home and experiencing the company of all kinds of people, is, “No matter what you do, people will always have something to say. So, gather yourself, close your ears, keep your eyes open and never let your feet stop.”
This is exactly what I did. No one but my mom and my roommate knows how many nights I was awake, studying, labouring my way through the Quantitative and Verbal reasoning! The morning of 8 January, 2017, was bliss. A message popped up on my phone, stating that my CAT percentile is 96.14. Now that wasn’t a very good score, some would think. However, this was enough to mend my 4-years-long broken heart.
A few days later, I received the call for CAP interview for 9 IIMs. The days following this mail were again, tough. I knew that it was my chance to redeem everything that I had lost long ago, and I didn’t want to let this go. The interviews went pretty well and after a long wait for the results, I converted IIM Rohtak – the one I’ve always dreamt of! I’ll be joining IIM Rohtak later this month and I am looking forward to meet all those jolly and brilliant people I’ve interacted with, on the WhatsApp groups for converts.
I am just thankful to all the seniors who helped me refine my WAT and PI skills during the most difficult time, when I felt that I might be lagging behind those who attended coaching classes. I don’t know whether it was my mom’s prayers and love (who reminded me every single evening to continue the CAT preparation), the guilt inside me (that had highly inflated inside me, after having failed in JEE), the taunts of friends, relatives and neighbors (who never let me and my parents forget that I did not get that prestigious a graduation college) or some supernatural force, that triggered the instinct of “do or die” , whenever I thought of getting into a b-school. Had it been any different than it turned out to be, today I might have been heading towards Gurgaon to work than prolonging my academic career a further two years in Rohtak.
Finally, “If you want something, just go for it. There is always a way. If you are passionate enough, you’ll discover those, if you are not, you’ll find excuses. It’s your choice, always!”
About the Author:
Isha Garg is a Computer Science graduate from Punjab, India. She has a passion for writing straight from her childhood and is an author at 11ahleven.com. She is also a graphic designer. When she is not glued to a computer, she spends time teaching kids and reading novels.