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Cherish: I am a born learner. I love learning and exploring life. Right in my childhood,I realized that my brain drifts a million miles a minute; I take up more things than I can handle; I ask too many questions and I learn almost everything that comes my way.
This helped me become a musician at a young age of 13 and to play live at myriad locations in Chandigarh, Punjab, Haryana and Delhi NCR. I have been blessed do far to find with the most amazing and talented musicians to play with.
I have always loved the writing. The idea of permuting a few hand-picked words in the most perfect manner to express a complex blizzard of your emotions is incredible in itself.Traveling is like my first love. I travel to wherever I can, whenever I can. There is no place I do not want to be and there is nothing I will not explore.The curious child in me deserves to ponder about the numerous questions of life. I strongly believe that traveling (after reading), helps you learn the maximum about everything. The curious child in me deserves the myriad questions of life to ponderabout. After reading, traveling helps you learn the maximum.
Finally, I took up Engineering in Information Technology because of my sheer love for computers. Since then I have done my best to maintain a decent score and pursuing my countless passions simultaneously.
IF: Which internship you got the chance to take? What is it all about? Stipend and duration?
Cherish: The internship started with a profile of a Lifestyle Reporter at The Times of India. My ever so beautiful and kind mentor Ma’am Jaspreet Nijher found me worthy enough for such a prestigious position in the Organization and helped me push my limits. I served as an intern for more than 6 months.
Interviewing celebrities and writing about the city’s trending and hot topics has helped me to grow in every possible way. in every possible way. I have been lucky to meet some of the most reputed faces of Bollywood. Being a musician, I interviewed many celebrities from Bollywood and also Punjabi Music Industry.
IF: How you came to know about the internship? Generally what was your way of being in touch with the media to get the information about the various internships?
Cherish: Benjamin Franklin said, “Either write something worth reading or do something worth writing.” I always wanted to give back something to the society. I believed that my thoughts and beliefs about life and various things in life and worth spreading. If I could make a bunch of people contemplate about something which I have written about, I believe my articles have done their job. I have always looked up to The Times as a brand and knew this is where I see myself making an impact.
IF: How much competitive is the selection process? What things you feel are looked for in the applicant by the selectors?
Cherish: The Times of India is a brand as old as 175 years. It takes more than just writing skills to be an intern. The attitude you bring to the table is what matters the most. Always be inquisitive in life or you will become obsolete. Another thing which really helped during my internship is the “Game for life” attitude.
Envisage this, missing a few hours of sleep or a meal, catching up with friends or maybe a few assignments from college can wait; but what you might miss by not seizing the opportunity that is knocking on the door is something which you will never get.
IF: What qualities of yours – educational / otherwise, you feel helped you in having an edge over the selection process?
Cherish: My experience and proficiency in content writing and editorial boards gave me an edge over the others. I worked as a freelance writer for national as well as international clients for more than 20 months before I applied for the internship. My knowledge about the city’s who’s who also helped me crack the interview process. Also, my soft skills have always come in handy in times like these.
But more than anything, what made it for me was the ideology: Whatever life throws at me, I am game.
IF: Approximately when you got the news for the selection? How was the celebration?
Cherish: I waited till my first article got published and then celebrated. I got calls from my family and many friends. Some even flew out to Chandigarh to congratulate me and celebrate.
IF: What all preparations you did (academic/otherwise) before joining and after the results?
Cherish: I kept doing my freelance work and refurbished my Verbal and Communication Skills. I read numerous books and gathered knowledge about the Industry and the city.
IF: Any problems that you faced before joining, which you feel could have been easily avoided if known in before?
Cherish: None is worth mentioning. Just do your homework and remember the Industry expects you be the smartest person who has ever walked in their rooms. What happens in that 8 by 10 feet room decides what will happen to you outside those walls.
IF: Any common mistakes which you feel students should avoid while searching and applying for internships?
Cherish: Beware of Spam Mails and people trying to trick you into something non-lucrative. Remember to cross-check your information by all means possible. A talk with your seniors and people who have already done or are doing something similar can be extremely beneficial.
IF: Cherish, Please tell something on the process/steps which a student can follow/undertake to get this awesome internship.
Cherish: Well, you need to be a good writer or a presenter to be able to make it to the interview. Things that can polish your way are experience as a presenter/anchor, making short film and documentaries or impact videos, work experience in editorial boards or literary clubs and events.
The most important thing which will take you miles is the attitude you bring to the table and your spontaneity. Remember a media firm can throw any challenge at you anytime, so you should always have your socks pulled up and your gears ready. Another thing which could be is to find the e-mail address of reporters of your city using the “timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/” address.
IF: So Cherish, could you please highlight us with what work/ project you carried out during the internship period? What all tasks were assigned to you?
Cherish: I started as a Lifestyle Reporter for The Times of Chandigarh. With that I began writing about the current music scenario in Chandigarh for which I interviewed many Bar and Lounge Owners and other musicians.And because of my fixation with Music, I also got the chance to Interview Coke Studio Musicians. Another thing which has kept the lifestyle pages flipping were the Bollywood stars in the city. I was lucky enough to interview many Bollywood stars during my journey.
IF: What was the best thing about the work culture and the internship? How was the work life? What all things you liked there?
Cherish: People at TOI are extremely professional and sophisticated. One thing which really struck me was, all of them looked extremely young for their age. The culture of the entire Organization is very chilled out and hardworking at the same time. I loved how dynamic our lives become with media. Every day is a new chapter with new boulevards of uncertainty.
IF: Were there any special events during the internships?
Cherish: Well, a lot of them. This is the best part about this field and profession. You do not know what your next consignment is and what challenges it might bring to you. I loved facing every challenge that came my way. I loved interacting with various new faces and getting to know them. I was lucky to see how music videos get shot.
IF: What was the guidance provided by your guide? What all support you received from TOI officials.
Cherish: My Mentor, Ms. Jaspreet Nijher has been a huge inspiration for me. It was because of her faith in me that I managed to excel in my work. Also a great deal of thanks goes to Mr Amit Sood who handles the marketing for the brand. The conversations I had with him while on a video shoot was extremely enlightening.
IF: To which all people you would, like to thank in context of this internship?
Cherish: My Family for believing in me. My teachers and mentors who had faith in me. Ms. Jaspreet Nijher has been a huge inspiration for me.It was because of her faith in me that I managed to excel in my work. Also a great deal of thanks goes to Mr Amit Sood who handles the marketing for the brand. The conversations I had with him while on a video shoot was extremely enlightening.
IF: How much difference this period of 6 months made in your intellectual capabilities and mind-set.
I think these 6 months have not changed my life forever. My life can never boring now. The contacts I made by being an intern are priceless. The special treatment I get whenever I visit any place in Chandigarh is a completely different perk altogether.More than anything I think it has broaden my mind and has given me a great deal of confidence. These skills come in handy when you’re talking to someone of high stature and reputation.
IF: What advice you would like to give to your juniors, which can help them in getting internships in their future college life?
Cherish: Always keep browsing the internet for something of your interest. I’d also recommend to stay in touch with your seniors and find good mentors for yourself. Whenever you’re finding an internship of yourself, be completely honest in the interviews and try to optimize your resume often.
IF: What are your future plans after this internship and how much impact this internship will have on it?
Cherish: My plans are well on the way, I am already on my way of establishing a Media firm which will not only deal with prints but also e-media as well. My experiences and contacts from TOI have been of great support in this venture of mine.
IF: Any views about this initiative of InternFeel, and how beneficial it would be?
Cherish: I’d like to congratulate the owner of this wonderful initiative for achieving what it has. This is one great self-less start-up I have seen in a long time. I wish InterFeel good luck for its future endeavours and hope it will change many lives.
IF: So Cherish, this was an amazing interview! We are at the end of the interview. From the entire team of InternFeel, we thank you for sharing your experiences with us, for everyone and we wish you best of luck for all your future endeavours.
Cherish: It has been wonderful interacting with you. I’d be more than happy if my knowledge and experience can help any individual in his/her career. Also, I’d like to extend a proposal of helping InternFeel and the students associated with it in any way I can.
Note: Students interesting in contacting Cherish, can send us a mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. All mails minus spam would be forwarded to him.