Scoring well in GATE (Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering) is a silver lining for those who could not get into IITs and NITs at the undergraduate level.
The GATE Score is currently seen as one of the benchmarks for admission to postgraduate and research programs by many Universities outside the country as well such as the National University of Singapore.
Karishma Ghosh, a biotech engineer from Graphic Era University, Dehradun cracked GATE 2020 with All India Rank 91 and got admission in M.Tech (Biotechnology) at IIT Bombay.
Karishma credits her success to perseverance and time management. She got this stupendous success while managing her extra-curricular activities that includes participating in seminars, workshops, cultural activities etc.
In an interview with DehradunTales, the IIT student shares her strategy for cracking this exam. She emphasizes on enhancing the basic understanding of the subject along with practicing previous year question papers.
Besides it, she also highlights the importance of mathematics in determining your overall rank.
DehradunTales congratulates her for this amazing success and wishes her luck and good fortune.
Read her full interview to know her detailed preparation strategy, hobbies, favorite books, and much more.
Full Interview of Karishma Ghosh GATE 2020 AIR 91
Q. Before getting into details, tell us about yourself.
I am from West Bengal. I did my schooling from Army Public School, Kolkata and completed B. Tech from Graphic Era (Deemed to be University), Dehradun.
Q. Why did you choose IIT Bombay for higher studies after getting an All India Rank 91 in GATE 2020?
I was basically interested in biomedical engineering for my higher studies and IIT Bombay had the best research environment out of all other IITs offered to me. Besides it, the placement scenario in IIT Bombay is also the best.
Q. When and how did you start preparing for GATE?
In first year itself, teachers of my college highlighted the importance of higher education in the field of biotechnology as it basically revolves around research.
So, for students who wanted to pursue a career in this field, preparing for GATE and getting into IITs or universities abroad was the obvious choice.
My entire second year of B.Tech went into planning which included going through previous year question papers and marking important topics etc.
Then, in the third year I started sincere preparation for it which included making notes and taking guidance from our teachers.
Q. How much time does it take to prepare for this exam ?
It depends on you when you want to prepare. Some can prepare right from the first year and clear the exam and some can prepare in the last year itself, and still clear the exam. So, it depends on the student’s capabilities.
Q. What was your mode of preparation: self-study or coaching?
While I was taking coaching for Medical in class XI and XII, I realized that it puts extra pressure on you and you’re not able to make much substantial progress.
For me, it was a mixture of all kinds of sources. I took some help from the university.
Dr. Manoj Pal is a university professor who gave GATE lectures usually three times a week. He also provided question banks and notes to the students.
Similarly, I went to other professors who have cleared GATE and took suggestions from them regarding the books they prepared from.
Whenever I could not find any material or topic in the books, I would search for it online from different sites like Unacademy, some websites on Bioinformatics etc.
Q. What was your strategy for this exam?
I think the main component to crack this exam is the understanding of this exam itself. You need to do your homework about the exam and how the paper is patterned.
Go through previous year papers and figure out what kind of topics are covered in large proportions and what topics you may leave out.
Along with this, there is a need for the understanding of the subject. If you have the clear understanding of the basics of your subject, you will be able to solve most of the questions.
Most importantly, you need to have a good grasp on mathematics which is pretty much a deciding factor in determining your overall rank.
Q. How did you manage the preparation for this exam along with your college life?
The preparation phase for GATE was a bit tough for me because I am the sort of person who likes to get involved in a lot of activities.
In college, I was the event head and vice president of a university level club, Biopreneurs. I organized a lot of events and conducted various seminars and workshops.
I also participated in many cultural activities. So, balancing out academics with extra-curriculars was a bit difficult.
I made a proper schedule, including what day and time to keep for which topic to study and made sure that I stuck to my schedule, which helped me a lot.
Q. What career options are available after Biotech. Engineering?
The companies which provide healthcare applications and devices like ECG machines/scanners or CT scanners etc., require technicians who know how to handle such equipment.
You can also go for research in the field of biotechnology. Various companies provide placement for researchers who research different ways of planning and programming of such machinery.
I obviously preferred the research field.
Q. What are your plans after M. Tech and where do you see yourself ten year down the line?
I will most probably be going for PhD and get into research projects that include biotech instrumentation, particularly including imaging techniques that we have in the medical field.
I don’t think I have a clear vision of any long term plans as of now. I believe that I will continue to work in the research field.
Q. Who is your role model?
They have been involved into many different genres like academics, painting, films, literature etc. Like them, I also wish being able to achieve excellence in diverse fields of life.
Q. As you like reading, please tell us some of your favorite books.
I am a fan of Dan Brown books and one of my favorites is Inferno. In the beginning of the book,you build a perception about the characters and right at the end of the book your perception completely changes.
You start to empathize with the villain’s character. That’s what I like the most in this book.
The beauty this books lies in the ending. There was a movie based on it.
Q. What would be your message for the readers of DehradunTales?
My message for readers of DehradunTales would be
“we must set a goal and have the confidence to walk the path to achieve it.“