About the Author: Yashwanth Vyza, a student of NIT, Rourkela, reminisces about his struggle of joining a foreign internship and how he finally got the perfect internship experience at TATA Steel, Jamshedpur.
Have you ever wondered how fascinating it is to read about failures that turn into successful stories? Well, mine is such a case which almost fell into a failure genre before I ended up doing an internship so exemplifying that I shall cherish it for my entire life.
My journey began with me getting selected in the finalists for Janelia undergraduate program in the US. Unlucky, though, I wasn’t selected in the top 15. However, this paved the path for my interest in foreign internships. From there followed a list of internship offers at EPFL, Switzerland; University of Melbourne, Australia; TAMU, U.S.A, etc. Thanks to my bad luck, though, I had a problem with my visa. As it required three months for processing, I didn’t have sufficient time to make it before May 2016. As a final effort I got in at NUS, Singapore, wherein I was sent forms to fill-up, etc. but couldn’t make it due to sudden unavailability of my professor right before my departure. All in all, it was a disaster for me.
Well, here’s the catch, before even applying to these internships, I was selected to intern at TATA Steel, Jamshedpur under Inspire program through my campus. It was a standard interview procedure with a written test, group discussion, and a personal interview. I was particularly comfortable as I was questioned in the areas of my interest. Although my opportunities to go abroad were washed away, I was very disheartened and unwilling to join TATA Steel at the beginning. Nonetheless, I joined there. Right after I reached Jamshedpur and went into the plant, I was caught in awe. It was such a humongous plant, the largest producer of steel in India. I was just caught amidst the simplicity of such a critically complex process. Right from their motive towards safety to the subsidized lunch we got there, everything was well organized considering thousands of employees that worked there. I was placed into a particular department and luckily I got the opportunity to work in a blast-furnace. The experience of watching hot-iron coming out of it was simply exhilarating. It is true that what we read in a classroom is different from what actually happens in the industry, but this experience had such smooth transition that I couldn’t even notice how comfortable I was. And, believe me, nothing there was of second-grade quality; from the most complicated machines like PLCs to even the smallest spare parts were of top-notch quality.
What sets apart TATA steel is how they got me involved in their working. I was given complete freedom to study and discuss with anyone ranging from the chief manager to even a technician, about the project I was allotted. And the best thing about this was how people valued my opinion in solving a conundrum. The importance they gave to the suggestions I made really boosted my confidence. I was very satisfied when I came to know that my suggestions regarding improvements for interlocks of PLC were being implemented. Apart from the work, I also had a good time with the people I befriended during my internship. Right from my peers from other institutes like IITs and NITs to even the staff working in control rooms and the managers, I had a cordial relationship with everyone and shared some jolly good moments. Jamshedpur had plenty of places to hang-out. We had fun on weekends too; from just roaming the streets to playing cricket in our hostels, we enjoyed everything!
All in all, I would say that despite my bad luck of not making it abroad, this opportunity at TATA Steel was far beyond my expectations. I worked in a world-class facility and made life-long memories and friends. Thar is what you require to enjoy your job, right?
Editor’s note: Check out these cool mechanical internships to have an incredible experience just like Yashwanth.