In August 2011, I remember purchasing the form for IBSAT among many other competitive exams but the lines that came out from my mouth astonished my friend who was standing beside me. ‘I am going to Hyderabad, for sure and I am going to make the best of it’ I spoke as I clutched the form in my hands like a priced possession. Life threw its own pangs and I gave the endless number of competitive exams everyone gives.
Amidst the interview calls that were in my favor, I went to I.B.S. Hyderabad along another friend for the GD and PI. Through the train route I wondered what the institute would be like; how would the people of Hyderabad be different from my city; would I clear the selection process; how would the institute otherwise be apart from the brochure and information provided by the institute, shared by pass-outs, friends and online. Even though I didn’t know that I had this customer centric approach to look at an educational institution and judge it on the basis of its faculty, infrastructure, reputation, hygiene and cleanliness etc I did pretty well on reaching the institution.
Going to the campus for the first time was an experience in itself. When I reached the campus, I was mesmerized by the grandeur of the campus area and its cleanliness. With coconut and papaya trees in sight, I walked towards the central area which had the academics block at one end and the library at the other. The absolute green surroundings added to my overall first impression.
On walking to the library’s reading hall, for registration, I collected the information required and got all necessary paper work done with the cordial and accommodating staff at the counter. Due to my endless curiosity, I went to see the library (which was just above the reading hall) and was elated to find that it was no less than a palace of academic and other books.
I was directed to the academics building by a staff member, where the GD’s were being conducted, waiting for my group’s turn. The GD was conducted in a lecture theater where our classes would be held in the future and this gave me a tentative idea about the classrooms. I gave my personal interview in a class room like many others where I was evaluated for my ambitions, goals and seriousness by institute’s own faculty members for around 20 minutes. By now I was affected and impressed by the faculty’s cooperativeness and staff’s humility along with good infrastructure.
After the procedure, I saw the instructions and advanced to the canteen area with my friends. To my surprise, there was an amazing variety of snacks, beverages and options available to eat throughout the day at a campus which was distant from the main city. Also, with the mess (that was serving regular food to the hostelers) just next to the canteen, my friend and I got the opportunity to visit the mess which was spotlessly clean and tidy, hence hygiene was totally assured.
Further, on interacting with undergraduate students who were present in the campus, I learnt that the food quality is good and there is variety from North Indian to Chinese food. Hence two criterion i.e. food and academics were satisfying on interaction with existing students, faculty of the institute and witnessing the physical evidence i.e. the modern classrooms, well-equipped lecture theaters, a loaded library as well as hygienic mess and canteen.
Now, the only thing that was left was hostel room. How would the hostel room be? For this question I didn’t need to go too far because that year I.B.S had called in prospective students along with parents to stay at the hostels but my friend and I had decided to stay at the city to explore it in the evenings.
On interaction with few parents and competition I learnt that the rooms were clean and tidy with a huge cupboard for clothes; a full size study table with a chair for studying and an iron bed which had to be equipped with easily available mattresses. Moreover, there were two hostel options, one with attached washroom while the other with a common one.
In fact, it was amazing to learn that the institute had a saloon for the students in these respective hostels. On hearing about individual occupancy in the hostel rooms, it felt even more interesting as the place was offering the comfort and privacy I was also concerned about. Hence, my worries for staying in the campus were also reduced to a great extent.
On exploring the campus further, I found out the plethora of sports facilities like table tennis, badminton court, squash and tennis courts, swimming pool, football ground, cricket ground, a modern gymnasium and others that the institute provided for. To add to all this, there were special rooms for the college band; recreation rooms with television sets to watch crucial matches; special clubs for arts, culture, public speaking, creative writing, entrepreneurship, marketing, finance etc.
On a holistic basis, the institute was away from the conservative clutches of home and the glittering city and thus provided for a peaceful environment for study. Moreover, on going through the information brochure of the institute I learned about the never heard before ‘case study pedagogy’ which was designed to make others and me self reliant for studies and answerable for the knowledge attained through self-study by studying the chapter, case and correlating them for class all by oneself.
This was certainly not the case for me since my childhood because either my parents tutored me or arranged tutors for me if I couldn’t understand a particular subject. But now in this method of learning, I had a challenge of not only becoming self dependent for my academics but also discussion, competition and debate on my thinking in the classes. With such a drastic change I had a humongous challenge to make or break myself among the proposed batch strength which provided for stiff competition that existed in the real or say corporate world.
With the image of the institute; the placement guarantee and records; the cordial staff, the informative faculty, the compelling infrastructure, well-equipped hostels and hygienic mess moved me enough to select the institute for my MBA when the results were in my hands.
Contributed By : Chayan Jain (Class of 2011-2013, IBS Hyderabad).