05-10-2010, 00:46

While i am very dedicated towards writing about various events that i cover or various opportunities that i get because of being in the media field….i somehow did not take yesterday’s experience to be such a great one and let it pass away like just another day. I was in my washroom just now(i get most of my ideas there) and i decided to do something which was inspired by my learnings from yesterday and then i suddenly thought…that though it was not a very big event or gala gathering…what i saw yesterday was a little window to a place i had sometime in my life wanted to be in and i should definitely write about it!!!

Here it goes….

Recently someone i met in an event saw my profile on various platforms on internet and applauded that i have a very impressive profile and great accomplishments…I thought the person was being very nice to me to appreciate my work otherwise believe there is nothing extraordinary. But i  realized that he was true to an extent when i saw an invitation in my inbox to Judge an Ad film competition organized by IIT Delhi’s Film making Club. The invitation had indeed come coz of my profile which someone saw on internet. I know i had longed for this institute sometime in my life and though i felt i was not really the ideal person to judge the event, because i am not that experienced, i did not miss the offer as ONE i wanted to see the creative side of people who are considered the most “Intelligent” the most “brainy” in our country and TWO i definitely wanted contribute to the students by telling them whatever little i know about the art of film making. So i was at IIT Delhi …..to judge 11 Ad Films submitted by 11 different hostels  where engineering students from all batches of B.tech stay. The Theme was “Its what your Right Hand’s for

I would discuss about films a little later here, but one thing that strikes me immediately is the way the “IITians” manage to take out time for everything. And this is not a quality they enter the institute with…its a quality thats imbibed in them through these 4 rigorous years full of Knowledge, Education, Events, Presentation, fests, deadlines and along with all that..a lot of Masti. So how do they do all this? Whats so unique about an IIT that people crave to be here?

Smith was an answer to my questions and my guide for yesterday’s trip. I spent time with him in the cab and he was also very nice to me to show IIT around. He is a Civil Engineering Student from 2nd year, and also a part of the club that organizes the film events. smith told me that there are many clubs in IIT that you can be a part of based on your interest and various events n competitions are organized by these clubs. All the students take part in these activities and the sheer motivation behind the participation or winning is to get their hostel on the TOP. I couldnt help myself not getting back into memories of my own engineering college where the toughest deal was to organize a single event in a span of one year. In fact its quite sad to see that most of the institutes in India focus on studies only and do not bother about the overall development of their students. IIT whereas promotes these activities , though their studies and curriculum are tougher than any other institute in India or the world.

Smith told me that they have almost 3-4 events, workshops, lectures organized in between every minor and majors ( Minor and Majors are the tests conducted at regular intervals in IIT…like sessionals in other colleges). While they have their classes till 5 in the evening, its the nights that they use to prepare for these events. And i was really glad to see the commitment and preparation of students in yesterday’s event as well. Though the film had to be just 60-75 seconds, I could see the creativity, effort and brilliance in each film. And…they were not allowed to use any outside footage/images which meant the whole film was shot, edited, acted entirely by the students.

When i asked smith, how do you do this, he told me another great things about being in IIT. The students brainstorm a lot on an event as simple as this one. Ideas are thrown, the best one picked, and then worked upon. While i am already into working atmosphere since last 5 years, i have seen people not very open to the idea of getting together and discussing things. Many people dont realize the power of brainstorming as they are afraid of their ideas being taken away. I feel these students are lucky that they get to work in teams and realize the importance of team work so early in their Lives.

Not only do they have culturals happening, Smith and i Discussed a lot on international affairs and i was quite surprised to see his knowledge about international economics. When i asked how did he know so much, he told me that they have economics based discussions where people discuss about various issues related to economics around the world. While Smith told me that they hardly get the time to watch TV, i was sure that its platforms like these that enrich their minds and intellect, beyond any comparison to people who just assimilate whatever is there in the news, without adding their own analysis or views.

While roaming around with Smith i saw a group of IITians practicing for a street play for the upcoming cultural event. So much of energy, so much of passion, i was breathing in an institute which was in action 24*7 and it sure was an exhilarating experience. Curious to know when do people rest here, Smith told me that he doesn’t like to waste his time on weekends and love learning new things. Though he loves making websites and design for the in house publication, the latest bug he’s bitten by is Adobe After Effects, which they used while making the film. So he would now spend his time learning the art of this wonderful software and plan to make many more great films using the tool. I was keen to know, how they learn the tool….not really surprised by the answer…smith said just by trying!!!  This was another add on to what sets these people apart. They don’s rely on guides or tutorials to learn the craft, they try and learn. The best thing indeed is they dont learn just what is required …but whatever that comes on!!!

There are many who do not try things, thinking they havent learnt it, but its the art of trial…error…perfection that these students learn at such young age…which gives them confidence to take up challenging tasks in big companies even though its just their beginning.

While i was really impressed by Smith’s ideas and realities he told me about being at IIT, i was quite delighted to see some amazing films by the students. From the idea of “Right Hand being used for auspicious occasions in India and thus also using it for Saving electricity and water” to “Right hand Right work by Congress” OR showing the contrast between cigarette smoking as passion and as a death agent…the films were definitely master pieces in their own sense, with use of good lighting, great music, wonderful script, brilliant ideas and great execution. To add to the quality was use of After Effects and Animation in few films. I was thrilled to see work like this from people who hardly have any experience in film making. I remember the films we made as documentary students in IIJNM. Though we were learning the art professionally, our films were not anywhere close to the films i saw yesterday.

The best part…the students din run out after the awards…they wanted to know what lacked/was good in their film. It was great to interact with a bunch of intelligent people so keen to learn an art they would probably never practice in their whole life. But that’s what IITians are…..its the learnings that they get and the things that they do which sets them apart from any individual….Its an all round development student’s get here that makes them what they are….and i wonder if each and every Indian Kid get an exposure like that….what a country we would become!!!!

  1. Vishal Sharma says:

    Brillant insight into the revered halls of iit,i liked the bit where you highlighted the devout-like practice of ‘trying and learning’..sadly,the resources and associated intangibles(most importantly,the culture)isn’t extended beyond the walls of an IIT,to those who need it and can utilize it equally well for the larger good of our country in possibly initiating the educational revolution we so desperately need..

    • xpressionsDeepika says:

      Hi Vishal,

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts. In fact while we talk about foreign collaborations and exchange programs, if our very own institutes could learn the best practices from each other, the education system indeed can be revolutionized.


  2. I’m really glad to read this post, especially when someone has praised IITian community of which I’m a part. Moreover, Aravali (my hostel) got the first prize in Ad-Making Competition which gives me one more reason to cheer on this post of yours.


  3. Anshul Goel says:

    I’m really glad to read this post, especially when someone has praised IITian community. glad to know u r being a part of IITD culture deepika

  4. mohit agarwal says:

    nice insights….i have been for more than 3 years in this institute…and in such a long time a person starts to take the positive things of a place for granted..and starts focusing more on the negatives.
    Your blog reminds me of my fresher year, when everything seemed so novel and great.
    Maybe I have turned a cynic in these years…or maybe the some of the things don’t seem so nice when you get used to them.
    Thanks for taking me back in time (and for awarding the first position to our video 😛 )

    • xpressionsDeepika says:

      Thanks for writing in and glad the article took you down the memory lane. It happens with all of us Mohit. Every place has some good some bad. We often tend to take the negatives seriously and positives casually. I am sure if we consciously decide to be positive towards life…everything falls in place. Especially college years shud be njoyed as much possible….so jus look at the brighter side. Congrats for the award…..it really deserved it!!!

  5. Saurabh Jain says:

    Thanks for such a nice post! Very rarely do we see any non-IITian (except our parents ofcourse) talking good things about IITians. We’re often called as arrogant, over-hyped etc, that I never reveal in the first instance in any public gathering that I am an IITian. But this post makes me feel so good and nostalgic about my life in IIT Delhi. Looking forward to PanIIT event end of this month 🙂

  6. Mayank says:

    I was intrigued by this point of urs that says … iitians dont believe in tutorials but indeed in trying …. why is it so unique thing .. i mean everybody has this quality in themselves….I believe even you would have not jsut crammed up the tutorial to every piece of software that you know 🙂 …. this is not something you can try and put into the iitian genre … Its all about how things are perceived by the individual.. the institute he studies in matters but its the individual more that matters in these cases .. and yes I agree IIT’s have a big role in making them what they are (being an iitian of course I cannot deny it ) but still its more of an individual decision to try things…. What we need is not an exposure of IIT to every kid in India …. What we need is an exposure to a culture .. an exposure to a thinking where students are more interested in gaining knowledge rather than just getting a good payscale 🙂


    • xpressionsDeepika says:

      Thanks for writing in Mayank. We indeed try and learn but its very rare that people put in so much efforts in something which is not related to our regular work/profession or probably hardly help us in future. What i liked about IIT is definitely the culture it provides and the environment in which so much learning happens. And as you said “we need an exposure to this culture” , the driver can be our educational institutions like IIT.

  7. Abhinav Bhardwaj says:

    Whosoever is related to the contents of the article can clearly sense the depth upto which you have observed the reality. Apart from your exhaustive description of IIT environment, I liked the last line related to such exposure to each Indian Kid. Really beautifully written post.

    PS: Good Work Smith, keep going!!! JK

  8. sandy says:

    I agree with Saurabh .. even I try to keep it to myself that I am an IITian.. because there is a inbuilt notion that we are arrogant.
    @Deepika.. a great read..specially for a alumni. It made me remember all the night outs I had for street play practice 🙂

  9. Vikas says:

    Hey Deepika,

    Very beautiful piece of writing, so thoughtful, so straight and clear. I have to appreciate your insight and understanding about IIT people because generally people refer IITians as geeks and arrogant creatures! I always tell people that its not only the education that we get in IIT which makes us what we are its more because of the hunger, the curiosity, the eagerness to try new things, to do things differently and to do it in a better way than others. I am actually feeling very happy that you understood us so well! 🙂

  10. sam says:

    hi…i just came across this blog…not a iit student or not have been excellent in studies throughout my life…it was really inspiring….i don’t study in india but this was really i would recommend to uni’s over here in australia….really it was a ripper..cheers to who wrote it

  11. […] About « Why UR so Unique if UR an IITian […]

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