There is no age of learning, one must chase behind their dreams and strive harder to win them. Sumit (left-most in blue T) through his story is trying to convey that, do what you love and love what you do. Seek happiness in every little thing and be the hero of your life.
I graduated in mechanical engineering from National Institute of Technology, Raipur in 2012. I write about this internship story because I think it really improved and changed me as a person. In fact, when I look back, I feel a lot of risky decisions I took in the later years. It was the end of my second year at engineering college and like most engineering colleges, NIT Raipur too had a mandatory six weeks training/ internship as a part of the curriculum. The college assisted us in getting internships by providing letters of recommendations but mostly the entire responsibility of getting the internship was completely on the students. The cultural diversity of students in most national level colleges is great and so one comes across students from almost every state in a college. A close friend of mine in hostel was from Rajasthan. He told me about a Gas powered plant owned by NTPC there and suggested me that I could intern there.
I loved power plant engineering as a mechanical engineering student. My love for applied thermodynamics actually made me decide in a matter of a day that I should surely apply for the internship. I obtained recommendation letters from my professors and send it to this college friend who submitted it in NTPC, Anta. The great part about internships and summer trainings is that most public sector, as well as other companies, is that most companies have a policy by which they have to compulsorily provide training to college students. An engineering student should never think twice before reaching out to such companies for a training at any time of the year. Most companies hold multiple trainings/internships throughout the year for students.
So the semester ended, and me instead of heading home (i.e. Kolkata) from Raipur, I headed with a group of my college friends to Kota, Rajasthan. I spent a day in Kota at my friend’s house and then directly headed to NTPC Anta. This plant was 70 Km away from the city and with help of my friend I got a rented accommodation very near to the plant in the village. I never knew when I started staying in the village that the forthcoming month was going to be a memorable one.
The very next day internship started, with all interns visiting different departments of the plant. Each day we would be taught about a separate subunit of the power plant. I was always interested in thermodynamics so it was great to see the principle of “Combined cycle” jump out from the textbooks and take the shape of a real-life power plant. It was the month of May and by this time temperatures in Rajasthan and especially inside the plant would cross 50-degree centigrade. When I would return back home from the plant, there would always be power cuts late at night. All around the place that I stayed there was nothing but acres and acres of fields growing various crops. Every evening I would visit the village market to have a meal at the only eatery on the highway.
I stayed with two other interns from NIT Surathkal. We met each for the first time during the internship itself. So we stayed most of the time together during the internship. Almost 5 years are over since training and we still are good friends. I saw the real rural Rajasthan during this time period. I had never lived in a village before. For the first time I got to experience such a place. I think most internships are not just about the technical or academic content but also about how we deal with various situations that arise during the internship. I think that give us bigger lessons than the internship itself.
I returned back home to Kolkata after staying a day or two in Jaipur after the training. These days most of us travel by flights but the great thing about being in college and having limited funds are also the long journeys in trains that I covered throughout college. Even my journey back home by Ajmer Express from Jaipur to Kolkata was indeed a very memorable one.
I have a message for all the students who read this. In college, I did not realize this, but after two years of college, I realized that one should always do everything that one loves to do the most. One should always follow his or her heart. Just keep trying for what you really believe in. If you feel you would enjoy an internship, just go for it, not because it would enhance your resume, but because you would love to do it. This particular internship taught me the same. Always keep learning irrespective of your age or any other factor that may stop you from feeding the hungry student inside you with knowledge.
Cheers! Have a great life!
If Sumit’s experience motivates you, you can check the latest engineering internships.