Your most recent achievement – you cracked JEE. You know you worked hard. You know you are in the top 1% of the students of your age in the entire country. You think the headache is over, but trust me and my two years of experience. What you endured in your 12th grade or intermediate or whatever it is they call it from the state you came from was as sweet as strawberries and cream. You’ll realise the battlefield your parents put you in the moment you see that car leave with your mother turning back, waving to you with tears down her eyes. I’ll give you an interesting piece of trivia – mothers of soldiers stationed at the border behave exactly the same way when leaving. I hope you can do the math from here.

Did the above paragraph just scare you? Well don’t fear for you’re not in this alone. You’ll have about 200 or so fellow students in your barracks enduring everything with you and before you know it, this pain will be part of your life. Why do you think we are paid so much? definitely not because of our looks.

Okay, let me set all jokes, sarcasm and dark metaphors aside. The reason I’m even writing this is because chances are the moment you got your allotment and your branch, everyone in your family keeps telling you what to do. “IIT mil gaya to aaram na kar wahaan isse zyada padhai karma hai”, “Beta IIT mein GRE, GMAT aur GATE yaad mein rakhna” and the infamous “Beta B.Tech ke baad MS phir MBA phir naukri phir shaadi”. Everyone is so hell bent on telling us what TO DO they forget to mention the very obvious contrary – WHAT NOT TO DO.

If you knew me personally you’d realise that in 2 years I have a rap sheet for doing the most idiotic things possible. So, trust me, I’m licensed to give this advice. I’ll keep it pretty general though.

1. Do not be Loud and at the same time, Do not be a loner. You’re in an IIT for god’s sake. Get out there and mingle. Talk to people about everything except yourself. You don’t want to start off as a hero. Start small and build up the fame. Remember a building with a good foundation is the strongest.

2. Do NOT EVER show attitude to a senior. The initial days, its good to be a little timid. Learn to walk the walk and then you can talk the talk.

3. Do not bunk your first semester classes. Bunking classes is a tempting thing to do but it becomes an addiction if you get away with it the first few times. Oh! this brings me to my next point:

4. Do not attempt to try NEW THINGS and HABITS.*nudge, nudge* Now, don’t play innocent with me. You know exactly what I’m talking about. How much ever it may tempt you, don’t do it. It’ll turn out to be an addiction in the end

5. Do NOT be a NERD. Non-IITians call us nerds. Don’t worry about them, that is just their jealousy speaking. The correct term is GEEK. Wear the GEEK tag proudly.

6. Do not be confined to a single friend circle. Talk and get to know people. Remember you are a batch of 200 genii. Knowing all of them is a plus one for you.

7. Do NOT neglect your ACADS. Whoa! this is a topic to talk of. We have an entire article on this point. You really might want to check that out.

8. Do not take too much pressure. You are now in an IIT – the largest pressure cooker in the world. Assignments will pile up on you, profs will breathe down your neck and projects will fail from time to time. You cannot do anything to avoid these. Learn to go with the flow. Listen to music or follow a TV series. Chill your nerves, indulge at the cafe. Do whatever to get stress off. Trust me- stress kills you.

9. And lastly, DO NOT EVER MAKE FUN OF AN ELECTRICAL STUDENT. The poor thing already has enough to deal with.

-Nagarjun Srinivasan


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