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The toppers from my engineering batch

By on Oct 30, 2009 | 14 comments

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In our Indian education system, the toppers enjoy an elite status. I remember I had gotten admission in one of the most famous jr. college in the city [then famous for producing max. number of merit students in HSC exam] and the SSC state topper sat next to me. I felt great [for whatever reason, duh!].

My fascination for toppers continued till my engineering degree. There were 3-4 studious folks in my class/batch who were exceptional in almost everything that involved a text book. They’d have their journals ready well before time [big deal!], would have topped all sessional exams, were the first ones to get the correct graphs in practicals. Me and my friends would secretly envy them in first and second year [in third and fourth year of engineering, nothing mattered to us anymore 😉 ].

Couple of years after graduation, I came to know about the overall ‘topper’ batch from our college and I’m pleased [meh!] to know that none of them has done exceptionally well in life. Most of them are software coders who and others joined their family business. That’s totally unlike I had expected them to be : the rockstars of the world. One of the ‘toppers’, as a matter of fact, sits in the same cubicle as my other friend who never attended classes and just managed to clear all the subjects and now makes couple of hundred bucks more than the ‘topper’.

Trust me, marks in exams don’t matter much. Because in the end, the toppers end up doing the same job as the non-toppers.

Chill.

The Big K



14 Comments

  1. Vidyut

    October 30, 2009

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    That’s right, right, right(i.e. trivaar satya). I have also seen toppers and ATKTers sitting in same cubicle and earning same money.

  2. MadhaV

    October 31, 2009

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    Trust me, marks in exams don’t matter much. Because in the end, the toppers end up doing the same job as the non-toppers.

    100% True.. So rather than being Studios enjoy your Engineering. 😉

  3. Gaurav

    November 1, 2009

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    The ‘toppers’ only study subjects relates to engineering. They miss all the joy in engineering.

  4. kidakaka

    November 1, 2009

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    I dont completely agree with what message you want to convey Biggie. If students mug the subject, then what you say is most likely true. But I have the privilege of having friends who not only topped the university, but more importantly also went in-depth into the subject.

    If you study the subject for marks, thats a waste of time, if you study it for knowledge and application, then its of a much higher value. So guys, study … but only if you want to.

  5. The Big K

    November 1, 2009

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    Well, absolutely. That’s the message I’m trying to convey. If you do anything for the love of it – marks/grades won’t matter. I am only pointing out the unnecessary importance given to topping the exams.

  6. Gawn

    November 1, 2009

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    Marks dont necessarily reflect intelligence in engineering exams in India. Today only I had an university Oral exam, and the oral was bad because the external examiner was busy asking stupid out-of-context questions rather than the questions related with subject knowledge :@

    All the hard work of understanding the concepts of the subject since past week went away just in 5 minutes.. :@

  7. saandeep

    November 3, 2009

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    Toppers in what sense? If they mug up the subject then sometime they will be proven average students !!

    If they learn the subject well then they will be proven masters !!

    So learn subject you get marks or dont get doesnt matter!!

  8. Mayur

    November 4, 2009

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    I remember a quote from Ram Mohan sir (Biggie, remember the old Ramu?) He said, “People only remember no. 1. So if you are not the topper, it doesn’t make a difference who you are.”

    “Likewise, 75% is distinction. 60% is first class. Any thing in between them is also first class. So if you’ve got 60.1 and your friend is 74.9, you’re probably the same”

  9. Rohan

    November 4, 2009

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    My experience is a mix of the two views voiced here.
    I know guys from my college who were outstanding students and are equally doing very well in their professional lives or other endeavours. This may be so because thet really studied hard and more importantly gained the right knowledge of their subject that got them ahead.
    Whereas there were these Mugger Pests who just felt great completing assignemnts before time and ranting out all the crap they dumped their brains with into the exam papers. Today I dont see anyone of them doing anything remarkable or even superior for that matter.
    Yep I still remember one of my Thermal Engineering viva in which the external examiner spent a nice 45 mins time with me trying to grill me but eventually it turned out to be a viva for him than for me and all he could do was ask my professor ” yeh ladka itna depth mein kyon jaata hai, aapka topper hai kya”( I was no where close to be called a topper) but I loved the subject and tried to learn it indepth. And it does give me a sense of satisfaction because I learned what I loved to and not just for the sake of being in the rat race.

  10. The Big K

    November 4, 2009

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    @ Mayur: Yep, I do remember Ram sir saying that. Made a lasting impression on my mind 🙂

    @Rohan: That’s the point. I’m against unnecessary importance given to ‘topping’ the exams.

  11. Mayur

    November 5, 2009

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    Tell me a thing… are you secretly happy that none of them are doing too well or are you sad that you were not amongst them? Why does it bother you right now?

    You could have been a topper yourself. And you didn’t choose not to be one. Just that you couldn’t mug the way the geeks did.

    Respect them Biggie. Being a topper is also an achievement and they had worked hard to be a topper. Although the achievement might be irrelevant today.

  12. The Big K

    November 5, 2009

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    @Mayur: Am I, in any way, showing disrespect towards ‘toppers’. In fact, even I tried to be the ‘topper’ in the exams I seriously studied for. I’m only saying that being ‘topper’ doesn’t guarantee exceptional achievements later in life. There are exceptions also.

    By the way, yep; I’m secretly…err.no! I’m admitting that I’m happy they aren’t doing exceptionally well in life.

  13. safwan

    November 6, 2009

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    Biigiee rightly said and good message from you keep writing this good things on your Blag.I have noticed most of toppers are kinda nerd not geek. they just mugupthings and they will be week in practical life .They don’t go for PT instead go to library although they will be having separate library period.

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