Nipun has been chosen as one of the top 50 most employable candidates across schools and programmes in India for the Class of 2016. He has one of the best 50 profiles among the candidates who participated in the Best50 competition.
‘Because the only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars…’ – Jack Kerouac, On the Road.
The above lines capture the true essence of who I am. I believe in living life to the fullest and going the extra mile with whatever I do. Ever since I can remember, I’ve been inspired by beauty and creativity in ways that are uncommon to most. I remember it was the year 1997 and I was a young boy of 9, watching the Miss World pageant on TV with my parents where some 75 young ladies sashayed down the runway wearing more than just a confident smile. It was the red chiffon gown of some Miss Argentina that impressed me the most. This was my first exposure to the world of high fashion and all the ‘fabulousness’ that it implies. A dream was born. Fourteen years later in 2011, I graduated in Fashion Design from NIFT, New Delhi with runners up award at the Wills Lifestyle Debut Designer Award, 2011 – a nationwide search for India’s best debut designers.
I draw my greatest inspiration from the popular children’s story about the ‘little engine that could’, with its motto that if we think we can, we can. I’ve been, therefore, able to perform par excellence at a diverse set of things I’ve chosen to do in life. It’s therefore not surprising that I can be a fashion designer from the best design school in the country and I can be a business graduate from one of the best Business schools, IIM Bangalore. I can live and work with craftsmen in remote villages in extreme poverty and I can mingle with the country’s elite at fashion weeks. I can cook, I can draw, I can paint, I can dance, I can act and still I can excel academically. I can make my own shirt, and I can consult a global brand on their business strategy. I have visited over 15 countries, worked with people from over 12 nationalities and negotiated in about 5 currencies. Most recently, I also got a Pre placement offer to work with the Alshaya group at their head office in Kuwait, where I completed my summer internship earlier this year. My dream is to start a truly successful international fashion label of Indian origin someday in the future.
A perfect combination of creativity and logic with an amazingly fast pace of learning new things and a constant endeavor to stretch my boundaries and go beyond the comfort zone are some of the skills I possess and the reason why I think I deserve to be featured in the best 50 this year
What have you done at your Post-Grad/Business School/Undergrad level that makes you stand out from the crowd?
As the only non-engineer/technology, non-commerce guy in my batch, I guess statistically I would be an outlier anyway. I guess it’s my love for arts and aesthetics that differentiates me. I am heading the design and creative team under the publicity vertical of the cultural club of IIM Bangalore, selected out of over 100 students. I’ve had the most amazing feedback on my work with the cultural club, whether it is posters or banners or just any kind of visual communication. I have also had the honor of designing the logo for the biggest fest on campus, the annual culture fest Unmaad twice in a row.
Besides being in the cultural committee, I’m also a part of the TAAL dance crew of IIM Bangalore and have performed at multiple occasions. Having had training in Street Jazz, I think I have a lot to offer to the dance club. I have also organized, designed and choreographed two fashion shows for the various cultural fests at IIM Bangalore.
What have you done in your life that you are the proudest of?
If there is something that I’m most proud of, it is my spirit of never giving up and following my heart against odds. One example that I can think of is from when I graduated high school. Having been an excellent student my whole life, it was expected that I’ll follow the traditional and also probably the most common path that boys of my age were expected to follow – go to an engineering college!
However, I wanted to study design, something that I was a lot more passionate about. Many people questioned this decision of mine including my own parents who managed to coax me into going to an engineering college for one year. However, I was willing to follow my instincts and didn’t give up on the dream. I appeared for the NIFT entrance exam the next year and got in with an All India Rank 15.
Years later a similar situation repeated when people questioned my decision, or even an ability to get into a business school. Once again, I made it happen. It is, therefore, a matter of pride for me that I have been able to follow my heart and do what I felt was the right thing to do despite many others claiming that it was not /that I could not. I think the greatest pleasure in life is in doing things others think you can not do.
Meet the rest of India’s 50 Most Employable Management Graduates from the Class of 2016 here.
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