Life at IIM Sambalpur

Located amidst hills and farmlands, the campus of IIM Sambalpur is peaceful and far away from the hubbub of the metropolis. However, the life as a student of an IIM can’t be that peaceful. Their lives revolve around classes, assignments, presentations and exams. Meeting the not-so-realistic deadlines for these components of evaluation is what majorly makes up for most of the time of a day here. Students at IIM Sambalpur run a number of student committees and clubs. On one hand, we have academic committee, commonly known as Acadcom, which acts as a liaison between the faculty and the students. This committee puts forward the issues pertaining to academic curriculum and students’ incessant requests for deadline extensions.

If we have the acadcom at one end of the spectrum we also have the cultural and the sports committees to lighten the ambience and foster much needed interaction between the batch mates. The sports committee recently organized a badminton tournament which saw the participation of the entire batch. More such tournaments are in the pipeline. The cultural committee organized the New Year’s festivities. It was a well-balanced affair which saw the intermingling of traditional and modern performances.

Life here is hectic but it is never mundane. Unexpected is always expected here which means we need to be on our toes all the time. But of course, we still manage to have our share of fun.

We spend our leisure time playing Cricket, Badminton and TT; visiting Sambalpur city in search of alternative cuisine or to catch a movie at the last minute or simply taking long walks in and around the campus. The City is located at a distance of approximately 20kms from the campus where we commute using the institute bus.

Any typical day starts at sharp 8.30 a.m. in the morning. Here, 8.30 means 8.30. Reaching in class at 8.32 a.m. will most certainly put you in trouble. Each session is for 75 minutes followed by a 15 minute tea break. Though, in essence, each 75 minute session is much more than that stipulated time. This is because IIM pedagogy method is interaction based. The implication of this for the students is that they need to come after reading the material distributed to them well in advance.

Apart from the rigorous curriculum we also get access to the best faculty in the IIM system. The depth of knowledge of the professors and the sheer ease with which they handle the course both astounds and inspires us. We do not need to be told to read, it comes naturally after seeing the amount of effort being put in by our lecturers. After the classes are over, one can always find students burning the midnight oil in our rapidly growing library.

Students, in collaboration with the institute authorities, host a number of activities to facilitate their overall development. ‘TALKAHOLICS’ is a much celebrated event of our campus which is held on every Thursday evening. For this event, 3-4 topics from current happenings around the world are circulated in advance and students are invited to come and speak on it for 10 minutes which is followed by questions from colleagues for a maximum of 5 minutes. Originality of thoughts and ideas is highly appreciated and the interaction mode gives a platform for exchange of ideas, hence creates a learning environment.

The challenges of a new institute and the maiden batch are multifaceted. Our redemption lies in our quest to meet these challenges head on and live to tell the tale. We are getting to see life from a very different prism but the view is constantly teaching us the values of collaboration and adaptability. Life in IIM Sambalpur might not be easy but we would not have it any other way.