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Today we have with us Arushi Sharma who has undertaken the Ekalavya Programme at IIT Bombay where only 91 out of 2,492 applicants got selected. She concludes the interview on a positive note by saying “Keep applying, work hard and never lose hope, a good opportunity is always waiting for you.”
Read on to know more.
InternFeel (IF): Please tell us something about yourself. Where are you studying currently? What are your hobbies and interests?
Arushi Sharma (AS): Hello, I am Arushi Sharma, a final year student at The LNM Institute of Information Technology (Jaipur), currently pursuing B.Tech in Computer Science and Engineering. My hobbies are painting, sketching and reading informative articles and novels. I have a very positive attitude towards life and I like to explore new horizons.
IF: Tell us something about your internship including stipend, duration and place?
AS: I did my summer internship at IIT Bombay as a part of the Ekalavya programme under the guidance of Professor D.B. Phatak. The internship offers projects under Computer Science as well as Electronics department and students are selected on the basis of academic quota (excellent academic performance) or software quota (coding rounds). Students have to fill a form on the Ekalavya IIT-B website. The application process begins from January end. The duration for internship is 8 weeks. Earlier they used to offer a stipend of INR 8000 on successful completion of 8 weeks period but from 2015 onward no stipend is being provided by IIT Bombay. The internship lasts for 8 weeks and students can stay within the campus.
Duration of the internship – 8 weeks
Stipend – INR 8000 (no stipend from 2015 onwards)
IF: How competitive was the selection process? According to you, which qualities have helped you have an edge in the selection process? Also, what were the key things that selectors were looking for?
AS: The selection process was based on 2 criterias – academic quota and software quota. The academic quota selection is purely on the basis of the application form while the software quota selection is on the basis of coding skills. There were around 2492 applicants and 91 got selected for the internship programme. So you need to stand distinguished in order to compete with so many applicants. I got selected through the academic quota. I had briefly described about all of my previous academic projects in the application form which probably gave me an edge over the others. I had pre- knowledge of languages like C, C++ and Java as well as SQL and Data Structures & Algorithms. Also a good rank in my branch and a good CGPA added to the factors which helped me to get selected for the internship. So, the selectors look for excellent performance in any specific field and also some good projects done by you in the past.
IF: Could you please highlight the work/research you carried out during your internship period?
AS: I worked on the project “LTI (Learning Tools Interoperability) 2.0 standards Implementation for ekShiksha to offer Question Bank/ Quiz Services on IITBombayX” and it was under MOOC (Massive Open Online Communication). We were supposed to design software that would help faculty to create a quiz using the questions from the database based on his/her choice of topics and he should be provided with various facilities and options to create a quiz of his choice. The project was intended at automating the current process and reducing the manual labor for the faculty. This quiz module was to be integrated with the Moodle and made available for the students so that they can take up the quiz. It was a web- based application.
IF: Can you give us interesting details about your experience – good and bad?
AS: The best part of the internship was that I got to know about the work culture at IIT Bombay and the quality of student life over there. I made some really good friends; every one of them was from different institute and different region. Since the finest students from the top institutes get selected for the internship, there is always a lot to learn and a fair share of ideas and innovations. And the last and the most important thing would be the location -“MUMBAI” which is obviously a dream city. It has some of the best locations to visit and the reverence for the city never dies. The institute campus itself is too huge and exquisite– it has a beautiful lake within, the student gymkhana to take care of all the student activities and the best canteens.
IF: How do you think this internship has helped you grow? In other words, what are your key takeaways from the internship?
AS: The internship has given me an insight to deal with the real world problems, completing the work within the specified deadlines (for the sake of regular evaluations), spirit of team work and an opportunity to work with the best students from all over India under the guidance of distinguished mentors. Apart from the fun learning experience it has given me long lasting memories with the friends.
IF: Has this internship had a decision altering impact on your career? Do you now think of a different future path as compared to before doing the internship?
AS: I always had inclination towards designing web based applications and this internship provided me with an opportunity to build the same for a leading institute. This has surely helped me in some way to shape my career. I got acquainted with the latest technologies. I got a chance to learn and work upon some new stuff. So ultimately this internship has acted as a boost to my interests and will help me build a career in this field.
IF: Lastly, do you have any words of advice or caution for students aspiring for this internship and reading this piece?
AS: I would like to suggest all the aspirants that they should be very clear with their concepts of some of the basic and most important courses like C language, Object Oriented Language, database concepts, etc (for Computer Science students). Also try to maintain a good CGPA as it will help you land with some internships at elite institutes and also help you in higher studies. Keep applying, work hard and never lose hope, a good opportunity is always waiting for you.