How did you decide that you wanted to get into the core profile?
I didn’t actually decide upon my profile until I sat for placements. But I knew what I didn’t want to do. I wasn’t very sure about my profile in the start, but I knew that I didn’t want to do Data or Coding, and so I cut down all the profiles that didn’t suit me and found my natural pool. Accordingly, I started preparing for the Interviews.
What were the companies that you were aiming for?
I was preparing for three profiles at the beginning of the placement season: Consult, Operations and Core. I had prepared myself only one CV, which was of Core Profile. Although I had a few companies in my mind, I didn’t target any companies specifically or prepare for them.
What was the general interview process for the core companies that you had given interviews for?
Initially, for Tata Projects there was a CG shortlist round, where they look for a CGPA of around 7.5 or above. After that, there are basically two rounds that you have to clear- the Technical Round and the HR round. For Tata Projects, in the Technical round, I was asked a very basic Civil Engineering Question: What is known as the pre and post-tensioning of beams? followed by questions on my internships and CV. For the Technical round, you should only have a good knowledge of your departmental courses. I did not have an HR round for Tata Projects, they had only one round. For other companies, there were basic HR questions asking you about your family, about your background, strengths and weaknesses, what you did at KGP and how it has helped and shaped you etc.
We’ve heard that for pursuing core, one requires a very high CG, how far is this true, and how would you like to comment on it?
There were many people in my department, who had better CGs than myself, but most of the people in my department chose to get into non-core rather than core, and so, there were few people who were left for core. A lot of people go for further studies as well, so that further reduces the number of applicants for core companies.
What were the resources that you had used to prepare for the company? Ex- additional courses, projects etc.
It is not that necessary for core, I believe, because they don’t really ask a lot of technical questions, but if one wants to do some preparation, they can revise from the GATE Material and go through their notes from all 4 years. That should do for any core profile. If you have a decent CGPA in core, that is all that the companies are looking for.
Did you have any involvements at KGP? If yes, how did they help you?
I did not hold any PoRs, but I was involved in Inter IIT my whole KGP life. And I believe, my involvement in Inter IIT is what helped me land my third-year intern at Schlumberger. Inter IIT was my strong point and was all that I had.
This year people will be sitting for placements as well. So, what will your advice be to your juniors who will be sitting for placements this year?
I’ve mentioned this earlier too and will mention it again. There are many people who don’t know what profile they have to choose until the end. I was stuck in a similar situation. I had tried Data and Coding, and I knew that I wasn’t interested in that. Most seniors I contacted had advised me to start Data and Coding, but a few of them advised me something which I would definitely like to advise my juniors. Start discarding profiles that you don’t want to work in. Instead of thinking of what you want, you should clearly know what you don’t want to do. And this helped me a lot, I starting discarding profiles that I didn’t want to work in and soon, I found a natural pool for myself. There are not many companies for core, and there is not much preparation required for core, so you can always prepare for other profiles like Consult and Operations in my case.
Would you like to say something to the general KGP junta out there? And give them a message?
I would like to advise people regarding placements itself, one of the most important things during the placement season is to keep your friends close. Don’t go alone, take your friends along, because that time there is a lot that is going on in your head, and you need your friends to be there with you. During the placement time, try taking a step backwards and think if you really want to do what you are doing or it’s just due to peer pressure. You will be tempted to take the easy way out like taking up data as everybody does in the last two months. Don’t give in to the pressure of placements. It’s a beautiful process. Go through with it. At KGP, Grab every opportunity that comes your way. And do whatever you choose, be it a society, Inter-IIT or any other, whole-heartedly at KGP. That is what will take you far.