The 2 years of JEE preparation from 2011 to 2013 were the best years of my life. They ended in an All India Rank of 33 in JEE Advanced 2013, leading me to join IIT Bombay, Computer Science and Engineering.
Back in 2010, my best friend’s brother got a rank of 125 in JEE. It was completely a new thing for me. Before that, I had only heard of people getting a 4-digit and 5-digit rank in JEE. At that time, I was in class 10th, barely 15 years old and so, I had limited information about JEE. Because of my friend’s brother’s rank, I was extremely fascinated with JEE. To top it up, my school took me on a visit to the IIT Kanpur campus. I was totally amazed to see the campus, the environment, the labs, the auditorium, lecture halls, and students. It was a life-changing moment for me and it was at that time, that I made a promise to myself that I will work hard to achieve a rank better than 125 in JEE.
Fortunately, even in 2010, my parents had got me a broadband connection at my home. It was because my elder sister was doing an MCA course and so, she needed an internet connection. Being the younger brother, I never let her use the computer and the internet and always hijacked it 😛
The hijacking turned out to be one of the best things I did because I used the internet positively – to search for articles and blogs on JEE preparation, interviews of JEE toppers, study material, books, and whatnot! Remember, by this time, I had made a goal of achieving a rank better than 125 in JEE 2013. A rank that good requires a different level of preparation and so, I scanned every bit of the internet to gather all the information I could about JEE and JEE preparation. I learned a lot about various programs at different IITs, including IIT Bombay, Computer Science and Engineering program. When I learned that all the top JEE rankers go to IITB CSE, I revised my goal – a top 50 rank so as to bag a position at IITB CSE.
My parents got me enrolled in FIITJEE Kanpur’s 2-year classroom program. My admission was delayed because of my sister’s marriage that was scheduled in Feb 2011. So, my batch started towards the end of April 2011. To be specific, it was on 29th April 2011. I remember this date because it’s my parents’ marriage anniversary on the 29th of April.
On the very first day, the maths teacher went student-by-student and asked each person – “Tell the class about yourself and also talk about which IIT you want to be after 2 years of JEE preparation”. When my turn came, I was loud and clear – “A top 50 rank that takes me to IIT Bombay, Computer Science and Engineering”. I had fixed this goal in my mind. I lived and breathed this goal every day, every hour, every minute. For the 2 years of JEE preparation, I was so obsessed with this goal that I had a sticker in my almirah that said “Top 50 rank in JEE 2013”. Even on my study table, I had written with a pen – “Top 50 rank in JEE 2013”.