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By Aparajita Sharma, Class of 2003

 

The confessional screen throws intricate patterns of light and shade across my mind as it time-travels back to 2001. The first thought I confess; of association with my alma-mater is one of relief- not being a ‘teenage drama queen’ in a pink pair of stilettos to begin with. The theatricality of young adult hood has mellowed into a Scott Adams quoted “We’re a planet of nearly seven billion ninnies living in a civilization that was designed by a few thousand smart deviants” philosophy.

 

The second confession as I retrace into memory lane, is the overwhelming feeling of uncertainty- the ‘Risk’ factor in gaining admission into a new institute that no one had heard of. Not that Life is without the pitfalls of risk altogether, from the multi-coloured currencies that slide between the paws of the “Street” Kings- Mr Bull and Mr Bear, numerous health and environmental hazards through our largely self-created carbon footprints, to the plague-like proportions of global terrorism. There is also the highly improbable, yet chance occurrence of being hit by a flower pot having accidentally discovered gravity from a high rise ledge, and making a perfumed, yet rather quick descent to a splattering finale of itself and my head.

 

 We were a ‘Starship Infinity Enterprise’, voyaging into uncharted territories of combining high quality post-graduate education with the collective brand building of an Institution, an Identity for posterity, sans a pointy-eared Vulcan and other non-hominid species as our Professors and the Management. The faculty, most of whom are institutions in themselves, waved their magic wands at very well structured courses that beckoned like strobe lights. Some courses seemed easy, yet gruelling like summer camp programmes, while others made some of us want to serve trout instead, to Hannibal Lecter in an Alaskan log cabin. It was a heady feeling, the early 2000’s, as brand India Inc. surged ahead and we entered the centrally air-conditioned, and impressive marble laden corridors of intoxicating business buzz words, concepts and ideologies, coupled with high-tech teaching paraphelia, stylized woodwork and frosted glass cubes. Warren Buffet’s sheer legend dominated our conversations and idolization as much as the flamboyance of Richard Branson and our own Dr. Vijay Mallya. 

 

Project deadlines regularly beeped ‘Code Red Eye’ as our all-night, prodded open, bloodshot optic nerves peered anxiously at weekly report submissions and power point presentations; while the caffeine-addled brain struggled to wonder if this eye condition was in reality the norm in the corporate world. Some of us also wondered though if we would have to co-ordinate it with our ties and manicure! The regularly interspersed subject examinations narrowed the concept of time from hours to seconds as the brains attempted hyper-drive functionality like a Formula One race car. Our feet quickly learnt to think on themselves and simultaneously co-ordinate with the grey cells, as much as our melting pot of personalities amalgamated into a unified, golden goblet called Teamwork. We ran our own Olympic marathons - spanning night and day towards achieving the top grades, where visions of orchard-full rosy “A”pples rained or stadiums of cricket “B”ats chased our lazy rear sides.

 

 

Stimulated game plays and ‘personality-enhancement talks’ opened up new vistas of self-realization, as our naïve minds re-programmed from thinking on lines of an Animatrix cartoon; to an entire ‘planet Pandora’ of entrepreneurial and innovative probabilities. We were an italicized Promise with only self–limiting possibilities. We hung on to the precious pearls of wisdom lavishly donated, as we strung together our personal necklaces of knowledge, insight, and experience from the best minds of the country.

 

Placements, the litmus test of graduating nerves, found us running between numerous 10-step guides for cracking interviews, Bejan Daruwala booklets, to watering holes offering ‘Soma Rasas’ in all blends, shapes and sizes. The Management hand-held and guided us all like wizards as we feather-touched a gleeful “My Preciousss” to our branded offer letters.

 

As the founder batch, we peered at the dense, concrete mesh of the imposing skyscrapers through our ‘Johari’ windows, flew in our black capes through the BCG Matrix, and swore on our management bibles to make a success of our foray into the corporate jungle.

 

In a ten-year span that has seen the global economic meltdown, the H1N1 virus, the horrific mushrooming of terrorist outfits, geo-politically motivated natural resource wars, global layoffs and volcanic disruptions, the inherent light of Inbuss glows like the guiding and perennial Evening Star. The triumphs and tribulations live on for us Infinites to continue our adventure, and venture beyond the outer limits of the stratosphere, as a Brand, to be globally synonymous with ‘history makers’. Amen.

 

Aparajita's campus placement was at Citifinancial for 4 years,10 months as a Credit Underwriter for the Consumer Finance Business. She then worked with HSBC Group L&D (Learning & Development), Pune as a Banking Systems Trainer for HSBC Bank Employees.. The profile entailed classroom training, Web-Ex training, preparing training modules, enhancements, banking system implementation and post delivery guidance for banking products & services on-site. Also performing inhouse development of 'Learning Solutions' for HSBC banks all across the world.And an additional function as a Subject Matter Expert (SME) for Basel 2 implementation through E-Learning for HSBC. She is currently working with IBM, Kolkata in Learning and Development as an Instructional Designer. This entails story-boarding, content development, authoring and site mapping for HR-BTO projects.

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