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By Prudhvitej Inmadi
Prudhvitej Immadi recently graduated from Electrical Engineering department of IIT Bombay and joined Samsung Electronics in Korea this September. He has something very unique that most of us at one point dreamed of, which is being All India Rank 1 (AIR 1 aka Ikki aka Hawa Ek etc) in IIT JEE. We asked him how this unique achievement affected him and how others treated him. Many funny anecdotes on the way!
It was the big-day and everyone knew well before the results that I was going to get a good rank but 1 definitely took me by surprise. I was pretty calm and wasn’t jumping my feet off the ground after the results. I distinctly remember my parents asking me why I wasn’t celebrating and I wasn’t because it didn’t sink in by then. It took quite some time, actually some days to sink in and understand what it means to be the topper.
Media and their stories
The media attention and the limelight were overwhelming to say the least. I was a naïve 16 year old, getting flooded by all the questions from the media persona and hence there were some very lame interviews of mine. Many of my friends still make fun of me whenever something comes up. I was a celebrity for some days but all is not done there. Media is media after all and there was suddenly a story in TOI that I was inspired from a character of a movie of my favorite actor. Thanks to TOI, I shared stage with him in the Audio release function of his next film. Though it gets embarrassing sometimes when I see the poster on face book that says “AIR-1 inspired from Pawan Kalyan”, it wasn’t a bad experience after all.
College was different from home in the sense that I was surrounded by ‘toppers’. I was less special than at home though I was more special than anyone else. There was so much attention in the initial days but once I made friends with people and the more friends knew me, I became more mortal. One of the good things the tag brings is that it made socializing easier because most people were kind of eager to talk to me and for the social person I am, it helped in making so many friends.
From the POV of recruitments, I can’t give much insight into how JEE-AIR helps because Samsung was the first interview I attended seriously and I got selected for the internship. I did a DB (Deutsche Bank) interview before that, just to understand how interviews work and I told them in the end that I don’t want to join. Samsung was the second. I didn’t do any interviews during placements because Samsung Electronics’ profile is the best bet among the firms that come to campus to recruit EE grads. Also, I was very content with my internship as well and hence I didn’t feel like giving a try at any other firm.
My heart lies in serving the poorest and I am here to explore how technology can help in empowering their lives. The South Korean economic miracle is itself a fascinating story for me. That’s also one big reason for me to come to Korea. Living in Korea, I want to learn about all the factors that lead to this miracle, what corporate and socio cultural factors drove this and then maybe do something in similar lines in my own country. My orientations have changed quite a lot in the past few years and I embrace all of them. What I want to do now takes time and I might change in the meantime. So, I too am excited about what lies in the future.