My father passed away when I was just 5 years old. For my upbringing, my mother started her own business of selling garments. She taught me how to live contently with meagre resources, even when one is not favored by luck. Though I saw poverty from close quarters, my mother ensured that my upbringing was comfortable. Unfortunately, I lost her at the age of 11. My world came to a stand-still, and I had absolutely no clue as to what was happening to my world. Subsequently, the issue of my guardianship turned out to be a matter of much confrontation between my mother's family and father's family. Eventually, my elder uncle(mama) and aunt(mami) took over my guardianship and since then, they’ve treated me like their own son. They ensured that I got good education and have supported me in all walks of life. And I really owe them everything for always supporting me.
Since a very young age, I have taken every decision of my life with little support from anyone. My self-reliance and motivation have shaped me into an independent decision maker. Amidst the disturbances in my life, I maintained my psyche and chose to channel my energy into studying hard for academics. So, I chose education as my way-out. In both class 10th and 12th board exams, I not only topped my school, I also secured 99.90+ percentile across the Gujarat state. Thereafter, I pursued my undergraduate in Civil Engineering from the best government college in Gujarat where I secured the 1st rank and was awarded multiple gold medals.
My education and experience so far have provided me with the basic skill-set to survive in this world. They helped me understand the significance of spiritual and ethical values, and the necessity of social welfare. Post my graduation, I started my professional career in the education industry. This was the first time that I attained some financial independence. Additionally, in an effort to give something back to the society, I also volunteered for an NGO, where I tutored kids from underprivileged households to improve their academic performance.
My hard work was consistently rewarded. Having worked for one year, I still wished to learn more and decided to pursue my MBA. I prepared diligently for all B-school entrance exams. I secured admission offers from 3 of the top 10 business management institutes of India. I chose to join S.P. Jain Institute of Management and Research.
The tragedy of losing my parents at an early stage made me emotionally stronger and independent in the years that followed, and inculcated a sense of responsibility within me. I learnt what it takes to stand up and keep going after the storm has subsided. Being a self-driven person, my goal has always been to carve the path to success by acknowledging any forthcoming challenges. Today, I feel that I have transformed into a strong, mature and responsible individual. Hence, I can proudly say that courage and heart conquered the past which made a strong individual believer!
Today, I miss them a lot and wish if they could see me progressing. But, I am happy that I have uncle and aunt who gave me the utmost love that they could!
-SAGARKUMAR PATEL, PGDM CANDIDATE, CLASS OF 2020 AT SPJIMR.