This article is based on an interview with Ms. Latha Venkiteswaran, Executive Director, IIT Madras Alumni Association. Through this interview, we throw light on IITMAA’s activities and its efforts in forging a network of alumni of IIT Madras, organized in several cities of India through multiple chapters.
“Working in a company like Detect which involves people from across various fields, says Daniel, gives you an experience that academic life simply cannot. “In fact”, he adds, “our firm is proof that students from IIT Madras, if provided the right guidance in technology, can generate more intellectual property than even PhD scholars from big universities can. We even foster other startups to grow out from Detect Technologies from the problem statements that we identify from the industries.”
This is the second article in the ‘Made in Insti’ series where we have interviewed Sandeep Mederametla who dropped out of IIT Madras, started up thrice, came back to campus and is building his tech backed services company in his own style. Sandeep joined hands with Srinvas and Madhu, ex-students from IIT Madras and chose to come back to campus and start PutPeace.com in insti, simply because “which other market can we connect with, the most?” Read on this candid interview to know the team behind the startup which comes to our rescue for last-minute print outs and late hour hunger pangs. The simplicity and depth of these answers exemplify their maturity towards PutPeace.com and life in general.
“Working on something which you like and taking risks based on that is a really good way of learning. Institute is doing a lot of things to maintain this ecosystem by providing safety nets. You can defer placements by one year. Opt for MS in Entrepreneurship to get a degree while starting up. It is working on the ecosystem with Nirmaan and CFI. My suggestion to all juniors would be — give it a shot. There is not much to lose. Either try your hands at starting up, or work at a startup. “
“It still hurts to have my capabilities and achievements questioned. It still hurts when people don’t think I deserve enough just because I am not an engineer like them. It’s a double burden, being a girl and being in HS. Our kind, we fit into all kinds of stereotypes and jokes. A part of me says it doesn’t matter now. I am out in the world to face bigger battles which is way more intolerant than IIT was of difference. But, another part of me doesn’t want anyone from my department to feel the same as I did however inconsequential my emotions seem in hindsight. The plea is for more tolerance, respect and love for people who are not the same as you are.”
“Insti has indeed provided us the opportunities to harness our interests, try out new ideas. For being able to venture out and engage ourselves in activities we enjoy, without having to defend each of our actions and the stability this atmosphere contributed to is what insti will always be remembered for.”
Amala Bonnie recounts how her five years of stay in insti molded her as a person and the wonderful set of people and experiences that she was gifted with from her alma mater.
The thing about insti and all that it offers is that you can sculpt yourself into a unique product. You can find yourself and define yourself as you want. It is easy to fall into the trap of believing that there exists a standard template for an “Insti Stud”, and then strive to do the things expected to attain the so-called stud status. But I quite frankly think that’s a stupid thing to do.
“Our team successfully implemented a solar electrification project in a girl’s high school in Chennai. Period!”
Where does one get to say that?
Helping school children get a better source of power so that they don’t suffer in summer says it all.
IIT Madras had the honour of receiving Prof. Baliga as the Chief Guest presiding over the 53rd Convocation Ceremony of the institute this year. The day before the Convocation, Prof. Baliga gave a talk titled “The IGBT Miracle: From Conception to Global Impact”. The talk was well attended by students, professors, alumni and dignitaries. In between his busy schedule, he spoke to T5E about his career and work.
“From getting lost in the institute to stealing refrigerators and mistaking drunk drivers for kidnappers, our graduating junta have done it all. But as a final word of wisdom to the juniors, our graduating seniors agreed that insti life should not be a rat race to attain the highest CGPA, get all the major PoRs or climb the insti ladder to be a ‘stud’. Even though there are no disadvantages in having a decent CGPA, several felt that it should not be the only driving force behind your existence in insti and it is those memories you make on the way with your peers that stay with you longer than your CGPA.”