Student Speak 10 - How Abhishek Successfully Planned his Journey to the Arizona State University

    Updated on: 11 Aug 2022

    We invite all our customers to a short interview, and a few of them are kind enough to oblige. This is Tenth in the series of such interviews.

    Q. What were you doing before you decided to study abroad?
    Ans. I did my undergrad from the National Institute of Technology, Nagpur. Then I started working in Tata Consultancy Services in Mumbai, I worked there for 4 years, then I decided I should go for higher studies and decided to pursue my master's degree.

    Q. What motivated you to pursue your course abroad?
    Ans. As I was working in the technology domain, so after certain years of work, I felt that I needed to know more about the technology, like have more insights into the things that are being implemented in the industries.
    The US is a good place where you can get the insights of the technologies and companies, that’s why it was a way to get an education in the USA & then start looking for jobs to get the experience.

    Q. How did you shortlist colleges for applying?
    Ans.  Most of my friends who have joined a year or couple earlier, I spoke to them and they gave me an idea about how the colleges are. And the comparison with each other in terms of job perspective, that helped me a lot. So, when I applied, I had 4 admits. One was from Arizona State University; where I finally decided to join. Others were from the University of Colorado, then one was from the University of Texas and one University was from Australia.
    There were also online sites that gave me all the information about colleges & they have these free webinars, you can attend them to gain info and insights about colleges.

    Q. Is there anything you wish you knew when you were applying?
    Ans. While I was an undergraduate I never focused on pursuing masters here in the US. At that time I didn’t have any idea; I wasn’t looking forward to it & wasn’t interested in these areas. 
    But later when I started working in industries, I realized that the US is a good place to learn stuff about technologies. So if I knew that before, I would have probably come here for masters, like just after a year or two after my graduation.

    Q. Which services (online/education consultants/networks) did you use at different stages during your application process?
    Ans. There is a website called GRE.com, they are very good in terms of giving info about the colleges. And they have a panel of students who have studied here in the US, and then they hosted webinars, where they discuss the queries of the students. They pick their questions & answer whatever query they have. It’s a good place to start attending those webinars & start gaining information from scratch & then deciding what you want & where you want to pursue.
    Since I was working in the industry, so writing SOP or gaining a letter of recommendation was a little bit easy for me. And as I have gathered work experience & whatever were my undergrad projects, hence I could get people in my office for a letter of recommendation.

    Q. How was your experience at your university? Will you recommend this course to your juniors?
    Ans. I am studying at Arizona State University. It is a big University; it has 4 to 5 colleges in Arizona itself.
    The total number of undergrads and full-time graduates is nearly about 70,000. So this is a well-known college.
    I would recommend it if students are trying to get a job in the US, this can act as a good bridge in gaining the knowledge & experiencing the culture here. It is also well known in terms of companies that do come to visit our campus, have seminars and discussions. You can interact one to one with them, know about companies and then decide whether you want to give interviews for them. So it’s a good place to be invested in and I would definitely recommend it.
    Here you have branches like Software Engineering, Computer science, most of them are dealing around computer science courses. It depends on the student what course does he/she want to pursue, if he/she wants to do Ph.D. then software engineering is a better option, it depends on person to person.

    Q. How do you find the faculty there?
    Ans. I wouldn’t rate it very high for my course because it is a new course in software engineering and them kind of wanted candidates who had some work experience in industries. Faculty don’t go in very detail of every topic, they just give a kind of overview of what technologies are new in industries.
    The faculty is very supportive. You have faculty from different countries such as Germany, the  US, etc. Some of them are very supportive you can always approach them, anytime. Some of them like, it may be a little bit difficult to gain what you want, you would be seeking something from the faculty, and he/she may not be experienced enough in those areas, then it becomes a little bit frustrating in reading that subject. 
    So there are both ways, there are good faculties and also faculties who just want to complete their subject and get over with it.

    Q. Have you finished your course?

    • If so, what is your next pursuit? And how did you find it?
    • What advice can you offer to your juniors to improve their chances of finding the internship/job of their choice

    Ans. I would be graduating this April or May start, so this is my last semester. I got a full-time job at Walmart Lab as a software engineer, so I would be joining there.
    Grabbing an internship is difficult because not many companies are interested to invest in you since you will be working for just 2 to 3 months for them during the internship period. They keep it in mind that almost a month would be required by you to know and understand what is happening and the technologies that the companies are using. And you may just get one or half month to complete your internship work, so most companies are not that much interested in the internship opportunities, there’s a little fight here for internships, you have local startups you can apply there and you can try your luck there, but there are good amount of full-time jobs. So if you are related to computer stream, then after practicing coding problems and all, you can grab a full-time job opportunity.

    Q. So it has been 2 years since you left India? Do you miss anything for while you are staying there?
    Ans. Yeah, I left in 2017, I have traveled back a couple of times to India and I came back this January start.
    You will definitely miss your family, your relatives, your friends, maybe you will experience a little bit of culture shock after coming here. But it’s a good thing because it’s important to know what’s happening around the world & have that experience, which you won’t get in India. 
    But you will find so many Indian students that you won’t feel homesickness, in our class there are nearly 80% of Indians, so you will feel as if you are sitting in an Indian college classroom.

    Q. Are you open to juniors reaching out to you for advice?

    • We have started a discussion forum, may we list you there as a mentor?
    • Which areas can you help them out?

    Ans. Yeah, sure, I am available and I am happy to join.
    So the whole process of starting from scratch, first of all making your mind to actually pursue it, then all the things like gaining information about the process of applying, about the colleges and then things like SOP, letter of recommendations and then arranging for education loans, like basically going through all those steps which every student goes through while trying to pursue a Masters degree and then afterward while coming here what happens, what you go through and what things are required, dos and don’ts, and regarding internships and full time opportunities. So I would be happy to help in whichever area required by the students.

    Q. How was your overall experience at GyanDhan? Did you face any problem during the loan application, and if so, how GyanDhan assisted in redressing the issue?
    Ans. Luckily I got to know about Gyandhan, I guess from the internet itself. The process was very smooth, they referred me to Axis Bank. The representatives from Axis bank were on their toes and trumps of following the steps, making sure that I am getting whatever I am waiting for, like making the drafts and giving the required amounts at times so that was very smooth. There was never an issue from the bank’s side.

    Q. Would you recommend us to your juniors for education loans? If yes, then why?
    Ans. I would definitely recommend it because after kind of interacting with other banks and all I found that Gyandhan is offering the lowest interest rate when compared to others. So that’s why I would recommend GyanDhan.

    Q. Having experienced the whole process yourself, would you like to add anything else or give a piece of advice for future students?

    Students who are doing BTech, after B.Tech and maybe after working in industry, they would feel the need for doing something more challenging and like if they are trying to pursue their career in engineering so they have the option of either doing MTech from India or doing MS from countries like the USA, Canada, Australia or Germany so first of all, the main thing is to make up your mind in which country they want to pursue.
    Basically you have to be very alert in terms of what things are required, because once you start the process and if you miss something in between, you will have to start all over again. 
    So I would just suggest that students who are trying to pursue, make sure that you have all the information beforehand and then start taking the decisions like planning your work and then working your plan.
    We had also organized two AMA sessions with Abhishek, where a number of studies abroad aspirants participated and got their queries related to higher education abroad addressed. If you wish to have a look at the QnAs and get a detailed insight into Abhishek’s journey, click on the given links - AMA 1 & AMA 2.  

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