Monday, 3 August 2015

Deconstructing Destiny: Success Story Of Two CETians

By: Anshuman Ray
"If you want something you never had, you have to do something you have never done"

The essence of these simple words is so empowering that when you literally see someone making it their credo and accomplish the ultimate feat, everyone is overwhelmed with an unshakable belief that YES, WE CAN!

It wasn't any normal Saturday. Everyone of us looked forward to 12:30. "Two CET alumni, Pamela Satpathy and Padmini Sahoo have cracked the coveted Civil Service Examinations and will be interacting with the students shortly" the word was out in the campus. The buzz was strong and the anticipation high. With every word, the excitement turned into inspiration as we listened to their heartfelt tale of perseverance and dedication.

The session started with the question whether one should go to  Delhi - The mecca for preparing UPSC examinations or one should study on their own to which both of them agreed on the fact that Delhi or not Delhi, the sole factor lies with the person preparing for the examination. It's not an outright necessity as Mrs Satpathy was married since three years and has been preparing for the exam. She has previously worked in infosys and after that as a scientist at CSIR. Her mentors constantly encouraged her to push the envelope which made her figure out that she has the zest and vigour to contribute for the betterment of the  society. Miss Padmini Sahoo started out her preparation right after she completed her B.Tech. Both of them cleared the exam in the third attempt which only goes on to show that if one trails their cross with conviction, success will embrace you with open hands.

The next question was how to choose optional subjects for preparing for the examination. To that, the simple answer was aptitude. It's all about choosing the subject which you can easily regress back to and won't get bored to study all over again because cracking the exam is never a sure thing as UPSC is Unpredictable Public Service Commision exam, as proclaimed rightly by Mrs Satpathy.

There are approximately nine lakh candidates appearing for civil services and out of them about 14,000 qualify for the mains and only 1200 clear the interview. It takes formidable effort and an immeasurable amount of patience  to be among the 1200 people. But it takes tremendous sum of relentlessness and never-say-die attitude to achieve this feat in 3 attempts. Personally, as students, being disheartened with the smallest of disappointments has made us follow a quick-success-or-chuck-it regime. We never want to be entrapped in the vicious cycle of Effort-Failure-Success fearing that the third one may not exist in the loop. But yet again, these two people have proved the fact that failure is the biggest motivator and the absence of encouragement will provide the same kind of impetus which excess of it would do, as elaborated by Mrs Satpathy. Sometimes it is as simple as making a commitment and sticking to it for a while.

On asking about did any of them had a back up plan, the answer was nothing short of illuminating.  Mrs Satpathy did her masters in sociology. She even taught sociology in her college. The bottomline being making the subject a part of your life and practicing it on a daily basis. It brought a new found interest in her and she tried making the subject more fascinating for her students which in turn made her proficient in her subject. She also considered the possibility of serving people even if she doesn't become a civil servant. But at the same time she made sure to maximize her efforts to become one. It's like having a plan B which ultimately leads to plan A. She left no stones un-turned to merge the seemingly bifurcated roads and work toward's the bigger picture.

If being an IAS is reaching the zenith, being an IAS for the right reasons is deep seated. The toil of many years with a belief  that they are going to change the world is almost cathartic. Both of them elaborated how important it is not to make the exam one's entire life and making the optimal utilization of all the resources at their disposal. Miss Padmini also opened up on enjoying the process rather than reaching the end as every ambition is a means to an end, not a end to a means. It's all about marinating and being prepared for anything life serves on your plate. With a little bit of luck and ceaseless efforts, the clouds will  pave the way for a brilliant sun to shine making the world your oyester with endless horizons.

The entire CET fraternity is proud of your spectacular achievement!! All the best for your future endeavours.

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