Thursday, January 26, 2006

Training and Placement

There are so many articles written about IIT nowadays, and this one is in the process of joining the list. Today I came across a pretty sarcastic blog (and if I werent an IITian, it might have been humourous), which talked about IITians acting like prudes, when infact they are capable of not much. The guy writing the blog had probably been humiliated by an IITian sometime in his life earlier, and despite his best efforts, had failed to clear both JEE and GATE, and what better way to get even with something that has caused you such mental aghast than slamming it on your blog. And he has done some pretty good job of it as well. Because after reading the article, you had probably get down to believe that IITs are institutes producing only self - obsessed bastards, who have nothing else to do except discussing Newtonian laws (oops..he failed to mention Einsteinian), ogling at beautiful women, preparing some brilliant coffee, going to the office place wearing slippers, and making fun of other people.
Now, after 50 years of IIT, if this is the image that is being portrayed to the outside world, then its a matter of deep concern. Especially at a time when IITs are fast losing their importance as centres of excellence in technology. And at a time when the T&P department starts believing that its not their job, in the first place, to get every man a job.
IIT is the stuff of what dreams in a middle class household are made up of. Clearing JEE is often seen as the fastest way of making money. When people come to IIT, its often with the dreams of getting a 30000 + a month job, along with the images of a secure future. And the best thing about IIT is that it helps keep the dream right through the first three years. Things like extra-curicullars, are encouraged at the expense of a good CGPA. And the whole system falls flat in the fourth year, when you seem to be running from post to post to get a good job. And the answer to what becomes the ultimate question "Why do you have such a low GPA?" And you have no answer, because there can be no answer, except for the one which we are unwilling to give, because we havent put in hard enough efforts because we didnt think it was worth it. And then all that IIT provides you after years of toil as an engineer is a software coding job, which tests none of your analytical or engineering skills in the first place.
The worst thing about Training & Placement is that people, because they work on a voluntary basis, and not on an official basis, dont take it as a responsibility. Now what I am going to write is in direct contrast to what I wrote as a comment on someone else's blog the other day, but I guess this is true: Politics in IIT, while not always making the best man incharge, also makes the people work hard towards making a mark. How else would you explain a ceratin 6 point something (and its a negligible something I believe) becoming the G.Sec of AIC (Academic Interaction Council: the body in IIT that runs the academic schedule). His CG and the post he holds seem to be a complete misfit with one other. It would much better be handled by the Institute Rank 1, you will say. But this guy has brought in sponsorships worth RS. 25 lakhs (unconfirmed reports put the figure at Rs. 30 lakhs as well) for Tryst, which otherwise was usually conducted on a Rs. 5 lakh budget. And he is working because he wants to make a difference, which was why he expressed his desire to become the AIC G.Sec in the first place. He also knows that any failure on his part would make him accountable to all those who rooted for him during the elections.
T&P cell, on the other hand, comprises people who think they want to make a difference in other people's life, but who more often than not tend to give up halfway. The T&P cell this year has been hailed for its professional approach, and its because of the perseverence of just two and three men. But there have been black sheep in it as well. I know of a person, one of my good friends, who worked day and night for the placement cell, till the moment he got his job, which was on the first day of campus itself, and then he just stopped. He wasnt motivated enough, he said. There are others who have got jobs and are still working for the cell, but these are too few, and the rest are working outside T&P. T&P, I have heard, buoyed by its new found success, and an all time average salary high, has stopped inviting more companies. And this, at a time when only 50% of the batch has been placed. And of these, some have multiple offers, from companies who have openly recruited off-campus and on campus at the same time.
Now there is even talk of paying a handsome salary to students who are working in the T&P department. This shall make everyone eager to do their bit, which shall further undermine the working of the cell. This, when only two or three people (even this seems to be an exaggeration, probably only a single person ) has worked hard for the cell. And then comes irresponsible statements from students working in the cell, "It is not the T&P responsibility to get everyone a job in campus. We are more concerned with the logistics and planning of companies visiting the campus." This is kind of ridiculous. I have lived with people who werent placed till the day they got their degree. And they werent the worst guys on campus. It was embarrasing, for them to tell everyone they had not been placed. And had the T&P cell be made a political body, we could probably have someone manage things much more efficiently. Then probably people could assure that everyone got jobs, not very high paying, but atleast jobs. The great IIT dream could possibly still be rescued. All it takes are some hardworking individuals. And possibly, some politics, or some accountability.

50 comments:

Caliguliminix said...

I can compare Stanford to the IITD's T&P cell. Here, there is a Career Development Center (CDC) which is the T&P's counter part. It is a center operated by trained professionals who give basic training of stuff like resume writing, interview skills, table manners, dress code and the like. They organize a lot of workshops and also conduct one-on-one sessions if people want them. The job of calling companies is left with the departments who have a better idea (which, sadly is not the case with iitd) and the CDC only provides the logistics for interviews, presentations etc to take place.

And the jobs of these bodies is not to "assure" students with a job, but to rather help them in projecting their strengts in a better way. I think the final responsiblity of getting a job rests with the student, but he should be given adequate guidance from an early stage to help him in that process. For eg. misleading information like CG makes no difference and only having a poltu post is enough to get you a job etc. must be removed at an early stage so that people have reaction time to strike a balance between acads and extra currics.

Phoenix said...

Excuse me sir, but i do not agree whol heartedly with ur post.
I dont think bringing poltu in here is such a good idea. if u do, there are more losses than gain. the example u gave stands out for dedication, but thats more the exception than the rule. i can give u tens of counter examples myself. the voluntary enthu with which ppl have been workin in T&P needs to be appreciated. yes some of them leave, but many more than just on or teo work, though agreed abt the one or two who wrk really hrd. and then there r the departmental teams anyway.

But if u wish to say that there is no accountability, i dont agree. things are nt perfect, bt they r on the right track.
i pray as hell selfish gains dont bring ppl and politics in this one cell of iit, thats nt yet up for sale.

ankur said...

Maybe the best way would be to involve more 3rd year and 4th year Dual guys in this cell as they wont have their own vested interests at heart.
I am not sure if poltu should be a part of it as this is a cell where capable and dedicated persons are a must but poltu may or may not guarantee that.It did in the above case but didnt in countless other cases too.

Arnav said...

I'd agree with caliguliminix in saying that it's not the role of T&P, or even the student 'volunteers', to "assure" jobs to everyone.

One, before pointing out the fact that certain students stopped working, acknowledge that they did work for sometime. And a lot more than one (or two or three) are working and devoting as much time as is practically possible. This tendency to run down all efforts, if nothing else, discourages people who have been working.

Two, despite holding workshops and seminars to help students with making respectable resumes and stop making a complete ass of themselves in interviews, if a substantial number don't pick up an iota of common sense and so keep getting rejected over and over again, it's very unfortunate.

Three, there have been a substantial number of companies that took in far less number of people than they were really eager for because the students turned up unprepared for interviews/tests, or many (too many for it to be ignored) students didn't turn up for interviews after getting shortlisted. There is no point calling new companies (I know that's a rather extreme statement) if the ones already coming in, that are no worse than the new ones we might be able to get, are finding it difficult to recruit because of the disgusting attitude of the students.

An alumnus, who has made far more significant contributions to T&P than any of us, once said after a particularly frustrating episode,"These idiots don't deserve jobs". Much as I would like to agree with that in moments of exasperation, I would say that it's not true but only a reflection of how frustrating it gets for the most dedicated of T&P members. T&P IS working. It could do so much more if they had a few more students helping them, instead of criticising them .

And about politics, I am amazed that you actually even thought of such childish arguments.

zubin said...

[Arnav} If the quality of students is so useless, why are they even admitted to IIT in the first place? Should not some screening process be made to ensure people who can get jobs (basically smart people, irrespective of their scientific acumen) get selected in JEE. Why this whole hooballa of IITs being a centre of scientific research and training when the cream (The cream consists of all those 8-pointers and nine- pointers who work hard for four years in engineering courses) settles is for what are essentially non-technical jobs. Which is the best placement on Campus? Not some core job for sure, but consultancies. How many people go into core jobs. Less than 20% (and even these are not the top DRs by any chance). These are those who have been unable to get a job anywhere else.
{Others} Now all of the poeople who are going to read this post, and these comments are going to be people with above average resumes. Do you mean that people who have slogged their way into coming into IIT and have failed to do anything "stud" (Oh..how I hate this word) in their four years, dont deserve a job. I believe IIT trains even the four pointers with that much basic knowledge, so as to get on even par with the top DRs of other colleges. And if you bring in companies, who recruit from other colleges, but dont come to IIT (deeming IIT to be too high for them), wont they recruit these people? But then, ohh, the average salary of students getting placed from T&P would decrease? Any takers for the decreased statistics?

paeritosch' said...

Commenting on the above stated issues in a random order:

first: some companies did have an intent of taking higher number of students then they actually took but while CapOne could find its usual quota of 6-7 deserving guys, Schlumberger, which came 4 days b4, said they had an intent of taking 20 ppl but they cudnt hire as much owing to the fact that they cudnt find the right candidates(note that till 7th jan, the day Schlums came, only about 130 btech/duals had been placed out of a total of 470+) ...
wat i perceived was that they were irked by the slotting done here(of which students r hardly a part of); coz bmby nd kgp had offered them slots way back of late december, nd they had the prejudice of smart ppl already placed. So whom to blame?? candidates were prepared, tnp student team was out of the slotting thing, all of the ppl except about 10(already placed) out of 55 were present, that is, no 1 eligible was absent....

second: the issue raises a question mark on the credibility of the JEE. I myself have seen many ppl(with gud profiles) making unthinkable mistakes in interviews...
many a ppl dnt even care to go thru the cmpny's website to which they r sitting 2... sum even aftr attending the ppt nd giving the written test dnt get sure whether they even want to sit in that company in the first place... while some get screwed on their communication skills, others on logical/analytical skills(despite being the cream[zubin's definition])...
The ideal case of getting evrybody the dream job wud require a tnp cell customised to each & evry 1 where the subject wud b an exact fit; aint that like applying off-campus to a company which dsnt cme 2 the campus(if its cmng to the campus nd u r a fit, u'll get it newys), so ppl shud go ahead nd apply off-campus to firms which they think they r a fit; coz tnp cant call personalized cmpnies as calling an ad ageny for an ad enthusiast or a dance group 4 sum1 lukng for a career in dance...

now about calling general companies like i-t or department specific firms-
i dont knw the inside story but the department committees seem to b the least interested, u cant talk of cs or elec depp here coz they hve a different story altogether, with tens of companies more than happy to recruit 4m the 2 depps...

the central committee: I dnt knw if its coincidence or wat but since the time(21st dec.) i got involved a bit into it, i hve always banged into the same faces again nd again... Undoubtedly they have done a remarkable job... cnt say how many new cmpnies were called by the team nd hw many new ones came on their own... but the part i saw -"logistics" was surely unmatched with companies expressing it more than often ...
although it mite appear that the list of companies 2 cme lack new names but i can surely see now that new companies r being contacted...

Hats off to those who have worked day nd nite to make a difference in other's lives, to get a others a job, of which they dreamt of
A bit more people willing to help their fellowmen nd juniors is wat is required to make the good TnP, the perfect one
“Long is the way And hard, that out of Hell leads up to light”. John Milton

Anonymous said...

IITD TnP Statistics
-More than 40 days of placements
-50% of IITD still unplaced
-around twenty five 8 pointers are unplaced, while in other IIT's (including IIT Guwahati and IIT Roorkee) second round of placements have already begun, we still have a department in which only 4 out of 27 are placed.

Intially there was a hype that many new companies are being contacted by the newly formed TnP team but can any one name 5 new companies that came due to the TnP team (UBS, ZS, Fractal etc came on there own). But there are many companies that came last year and are not coming this year like Reckitt and Benckiser, Nagarro, Infineon, Insilica, Deloitte, Hughes, Magma and a few more. Starting with an ambitious list of 240 companies, how many have they contacted. Leave them aside, there are many companies which came to other IIT's but our TnP didn't even know there name.
TnP team was working till the time they got their own job(leaving 2-3 who are still working), but after that they even forgot wat TnP is about.
The so called mass recruiters(TCS, Infy and IBM) came to IIT (and due to One job one Person) very few sat for them and only 7-8 were selected and even oracle did not come for general profile for which it usually takes from other regional colleges.
The selection rate is decreasing exponentialy ( 100 in first 10 days , 50 in next 10 and then 20 or so. We still have abt 3 companies a day (most for Elec and comp as in past) but none of them is a good recruiter (which takes more that 10 students)...and we cant accomodate more companies a day (shortage of logistics in this big IIT and also shortage of TnP volus)
The problem with TnP is that they are not taking this issue of placing whole IITD as an image of themselves or of IIT as a whole. They are not taking themselves responsible for the remaining placements. So what is the solution? the unplaced students start volunteering and start working in TnP till they got there own job and after that leave it for the unplaced ones to come up.
The person who became the AIC G-sec had some ego in him, he had to show something, build a image of him, his hostel.... and all of us now say to him "phod diya". so why cant TnP team has such a spirit so that whole student community can say "TnP student team ne phod diya"

zubin said...

Now that we have seen both sides of the story, I guess the purpose of this post has been pretty much accomplished. I had no intention to either dishearten those working so hard for the T&P cell, or to downplay the achievements of the cell.
And I am not writing this to please anyone, but I guess the main point of this post, was to make the people running the T&P to understand the view point of all those not getting a job yet. The lack of a job breeds frustration, and I just wanted the cell to think as to where all it is going wrong, and to suggest possible improvements. If people say T&P IS working, I am ready to believe you, its just that the T&P should also be more flexible, and should be ready to handle criticism. I am not sorry about calling spade a spade, and I wrote all things that were true to my knowledge.
Again, I repeat, my criticism, while hardly making any difference, could just make you ask questions about the cell's working. And I would hardly appreciate if people didnt comment anonymously to this post atleast. Please speak your mind.

Anonymous said...

Well there are many things i wud agree on wid u sir,but to me what really disappoints is the fact that ppl in IIT just don't know about themselves ..in the sense that whr to apply ...whr they wud fit into ...evryone today in the campus is looking for consulting job....sad to knw that they don't even know wht it takes and wht they wil do .....thn banking ..........of wch they don't knw a bit....all everybody knows here is they just don't wnt to be in tech and coding jobs.And come on ..we al knwo that its just not possible to get a consulting job for evry1 esp after knowing the %egs of ths kinda compnies who come to recruit.........So its time for all of us to sit back and give a thought before hoping for something wch you and even me(:() don deserve...But We all shud give applause to "TNP" team who have worked with so much of dedication just for u all....

ToTo said...

@anonymous
"applause to "TNP" team"...for placing 50% IIT at a time when all other IIT's are in their second round?? As far as the case of sitting in consulting or banking is concerned, for ur kind information Mr./Ms. anonymous it is same for other IIT's also and they hire from same pool of students[who dont hve ne idea of consultacny/banking].. "its just not possible to get a consulting job for evry1" but for our TnP is it possible to get any job for everyone?? "So its time for all of us to sit back" and now we again sit back what are we doing till now? are we not sitting only as we are not doing any work?

Anonymous said...

Well...interesting post and aftermath zubin.

My comments....
1st of all we must understand that IITD is different from other IITs...so lets not compare. Regardless of what has been said, i hink that tnp has done a good job(I remember a certain senior saying in SAC meeting that the new system will not work at all due to 'logistics'). If the other IITs have worked better, it is because they have better systems in place. That does not in anyway undermine tnp's work at IITD.

Also, lets face it...IITD has a bad reputation among recruiters...may be because of the purane paap of old tnp, and partially because we do have a very casual attitude towards companies. As students we need to do some serious soul searching about what we want.

No, poltu is not a solution. If you have one example of a certain GSec working well, you also have at least a few examples of past Gsecs working badly. It is totally upon the person randomly selected by poltu and his or her convictions.

I agree that 3rd yearites and 4th year Dullas shud have a more important role(they do get a lot of treats!). In my opinion it is these guys who shud be given the key responsibilities rather than final yearites. I have 'reasonable' amount of faith in the present system(note the qualifier) and I thing based on this years working we will have a better system next year.

As far as our year is concerned, I am praying hard.

aditya shankar said...

Hey Zubin...your blog has certainly pulled us out of the gay abandon which we seem to enjoy to the absurd limits of narcissism without caring about whats happening to people around us....a typical IITian way of thought...

hey every1, I must admit one thing at the outset itself, I love stating Facts and Figures, because it spares me from the rigmarole of indulging in the act of an interpreter ( of Maladies!!! as is the case in our hands).

Let me first introduce you to certain comments put forth by the persons belonging to the high echelon surrounded by heavenly airs.. residing far away from the worlds of mere mortals...

(P.S. -> Sorry for making a few private conversations public and also for infringing on the personal space of some of you guys...in other words sorry for eavesdropping albeit unintentionally)

1. Hey, i dont know why should i call more "good" companies to campus when there aren't enough good men in IITD. ( Fair enough, there are only 9-10 heavenly guys in the TnP team so why would he be interested in calling more "good" companies).

Date : a day before SPORTECH began

2. Hey, why are the people expecting that we will have cent percent placements...50% is more okay..last yeartoo we had only 60% placement. ( hey guys according to latest figures we have 242 lucky guys ( alas they made it) who are placed, it adds upto to roughly 51%!!! i must say the job ( although w/o responsibility) of the much famed and talked about TnP team is over... excellent "job"... ( come on guys all of them have landed with the best companies in the business.. lets not ruin their party...its indeed marvellous)..jokes apart...the euphoria which is prevailing arnd the TnP team must die quickly if we want it to perform with responsibility and commitment in the years to come..otherwise it might turn out as an ephemeral phenomenon... If some of you are not in sync with what i just delineated i must, again, bring to ur notice a few more facts and figures... IITR and IITG are almost placed ... with decent salary and "good" companies coming to their campuses... and one more fact, contrary to general public opinion, they are not all placed in mass recruiting firms offering peanuts...in IITG a person selected in 'such' firms is eligible for second placement also.. and one more comment which was quoted in IITG might bring a fair share of shame on our faces.. it goes on like this... We think we must start our placements in seventh semester itself from next year...as this experiment turned out to be a failure as is the case with IITD

i dont knw what else can be said with regard to matter in our hands :(



3. "It is not the T&P responsibility to get everyone a job in campus. We are more concerned with the logistics and planning of companies visiting the campus.

well now when this is the statement which triggered this avalanche of thoughts how could I miss it!!!

Hey guys can u tell me one simple thing... dont we have a a section in our resumes where we boast about our POSTS OF RESPONSIBILITY ...and it precisely where all this exercise was aimed at ( not for everyone of those heavenly guys but yes its true for a majority of them)..and now comes a comment that its not Tnp's RESPONSIBILITY to get everyone job.. again i am at a profound loss of civilised words.. how could these heavenly guys HELL WITH THEIR RESPONSIBILITIES which they so profoundly mentioned in their resumes ... can any1 of u tell me how many guys from the central committee have turned up in the TnP cell after they got placed... it seems that the TnP committe has been shut sine die..

Date : Well, now its almost famous!!

4. this comment might seem to be rather insignificant but this aptly portrays the attitude of these heavenly guys towards mere mortals..

" When you have to take a software job why do u have to attend a class of "Internat'l Competitiveness"

Come on heaven...dont shower us with such acidulous remarks...people r already depressed and discouraged.. we all accept ur nobility.. please dont pass on such cheap remarks..u r only tarnishing ur image...one more hing i must admit if oedipus complex is the worst sin a condescending air of superiority complex is even worse !!

Date : Manhattan on Campus

I think a few other quotes can wait for some other day...

But, Zubin i ve a pretty different opinion regarding the Poltu funda.. yes its true that TRYST 2006 is a splendid endeavour... but on all other accounts poltu has failed miserably (this year in particular)... I think this is because we only vie for posts and then shrug off all our responsibilities... the same phenomenon too is bugging the TnP too.... on the hindsight we cannot even ignore the pros of poltu, a necessary evil.... come to think of it in following terms... leave GSecs...the secys work because there is an inherent competition which exists among them...same is the case with representatives... but in the current context TnP is an independent identity... living in a world of solitary confinement and splendid isolation..basking on its unseen glories... there is no competition at all...meaning there is no motivation at all in some of these heavenly creatures....

One word of advice for TnP from one of the mortals - please look beyond BAIN & BARCLAYS there are companies which need to be contacted for the sake of we mortals...

and please dont offer lame excuses like there was no infrastructure and all... the problem is that we have all the infrastructure in place all we have to do is to tap it efficiently... we dont need a TnP building to make all squares meet... we are not new to the IIT system.. tnP should have anticipated the high handedness of the system and worked accordingly.. a little manipulation and diplomacy can make it happen..A lesson which many of us must have taken in SLOT P.. so please dont say a certain 'skilled' Training Incharge burst ur boisterous balloon... its you who accepted the job voluntarily (there was no gun pointing at ur head) and so now u must perform the job with certain respectable degree of accountability... u knew what the scenario was before u went aboard.. so please dont say now the waves are too hostile to let us tread our expected path...

Sorry for posting such a long comment but I couldnt control paaji.. thanks Zubin..

zubin said...

Hey guys, thanks for posting so many of your comments here. Well, as for the POltu funda..lemme just explain my point a bit. It seems I have been misunderstood by most people. How were people selected to lead the T&P this year around? Excuse me if I am wrong, but wasnt it in terms of the proximity to the guy who headed the cell last year? SO didnt that constitute poltu as such? Or else how do you explain, a fifth yearite from Chemical Dual deptt. of KUmaon Hostel, who had worked so hard the preceding year, but didnt find himself a place in the T&P team? And there are many other examples, when the 11 members of T&P were chosen, not becuase they were the best in their field, but because an aforesaid individual thought, that these people will work well.
Now well, all I am saying is, that Politics, inspite of all its downfalls, atleast sometimes gives you a chance to be right. How else, and I am not afraid of taking names here, would you explain Gaurav Prakash, who had never ever been to a Music competition before, doing so very well, as the secretary of Music Club? Everything in IIT is otherwise also politicised, all our resumes are made by politicising and networking, which helps people garner awards. Why not then the T&P cell? IS it that big an entity? There is already a lot of politics involved, and all I am saying is that officialise it. Does that seem such a bad idea?

Mithrandir said...

IIT Poltu is nothing but heaps of shit, so it wud be better to keep it out of the TnP. Some better way can be thought of to pick the team e.g. one person per department from 2nd and 3rd years (Not a class convenor plz.. it will also involve poltu). this way the final yearites wont have to listen to the accusations that they left after getting a gud job.

Healthy discussion. What is required is that concerned people to have a look at it.

More on a related issue @ http://sukhjit.blogspot.com/2005/12/hopping-cream.html

Ankur Kothari said...

Hi. To begin with, thanks to Zubin for giving space to lots of people to express their opinions regarding placements this year. A lot of issues have been raised and many good suggestions as to what improvements can take place for T&P cell have come up which will seen to.

It is my sincere request that everyone who has any idea/suggestion or help in terms of work that can be done should contact me. T&P is a voluntary committee, everyone is free to work here. We need all the help we can.

It should be understood that two/three people can have only so much of ideas and can only work so much, and if help came in form of people coming forward to work rather than venting their frustration in public space (which doesn't do anything but demoralise the people who are working), it would be for the better for all of us.

To end, we must remember that T&P is an evolving activity and it won't survive if we only keep looking at what could have happened rather than looking at what all has happened.

An eye for an eye only makes us all blind.

Anonymous said...

It's not exactly a surprise to note the solution you suggest for the "woes" T&P finds itself in, given your inclination for poltu while you were still among us. Of course, you are of the opinion that T&P volunteers are "gods" invested with the "responsibilty" of placing people who have taken no pains in their stay at IIT to learn something more than horse trading over nightouts in Nescafe. I wonder how "King Makers" such as thy find it difficult to get placed, given your exceptional and immaculate abilities that you have amply demonstrated through your JEE rank. Oh! but the answer is patent: inefficient T&P, right?

Of all the students who graduate (in engineering) every year in India, only 20% get interview calls in MNCs after resume shortlisting. Obviously we would expect this figure to be 100% for IIT Delhi; each of us eventually gets a shot in one or more firms, no matter what GPA s/he may hold. The fact that WE blow our chances in these precious shots is obviously conveniently overlooked; the blame squarely rests with the T&P for not having been able to place the top 2% of the engineering talent in the country!

The point I am trying to drive across is pretty simple. Most of us consider cracking the JEE as our biggest achievement; an accomplishment so grand in itself that we consider trivialities of working for a good GPA a laughing matter. "Ahh, we are not maggoos", we tell ourselves (and others). We would rather spend our time looking into the complex dynamics of the factors governing the six coveted posts in IIT Delhi. Won't our names be then written in gold in the hallowed precincts of SAC?

"And the best thing about IIT is that it helps keep the dream right through the first three years". Who the hell are you kidding Zubin? Do you consider this "the best thing about IIT"? And did you have to wait right up to the 4th year to learn the reality? Or shall we interpret this as a failure on your part to learn from the experiences of your seniors? In this regard, should I consider your Chemical Engg dual degree friend of Kumaon more astute? Perhaps you could also tell us what you did to impress upon your juniors the importance of GPA, as you learnt from your experience. I don't mean to be rude, but you are one of those who help in keeping "the dream" right through the first three years. Won't the hostel suffer if juniors started focusing on GPA than on getting trophies?

Your solution to make the T&P student committee a democratically elected body presumes that the much vaunted "greater accountability" will directly translate into more jobs, and more double offers and what not. Isn't the T&P supposed to be doing precisely that? You conveniently gloss over highlighting the marked change in attitude required to achieve this. Are you telling us that companies will tolerate whatever shit you present in the interview because you are from IIT, and that it is their duty to help you see through your "dream of 30k/month" job?

The trouble is that we always try to hold the incumbent responsible for failures in his department. This is not confined to T&P. We somehow overlook our part in the whole mess, and how we could have made the difference. Let's consider an example. We all would surely be aware of the name "Goldman Sachs", and the brand that it is, given our IIM aspirations. May I ask what prevented us from attending the PPT of this firm? Someone had a few words of wisdom for T&P: "One word of advice for TnP from one of the mortals - please look beyond BAIN & BARCLAYS there are companies which need to be contacted for the sake of we mortals...". Boss, please tell me which company's PPT will you happily attend, because neither the likes of Inductis nor the likes of EValueServe seem to appeal to you? And if you knew companies that existed for "mortals" as you, why didn't you come out in the open when the T&P team had asked you to? Or did you then think that you would surely manage a job in McKinsey/BCG? "Let others fend for themselves".

Sadly this is the attitude that we all carry. Let me be very blunt in my remark here: The T&P team is not gifted with extraterrestrial powers. If you want a job, you have to FIGHT for it. Nothing comes easy. The Career Development Center of Stanford does not tell you to rest assured of a US$100,000 per annum job the moment you join. It, however, prepares you to work towards that goal. The story is the same in any campus you consider: IIMA, IIMB, IIMC, Harvard....This was one of the initiatives that the T&P team took this year. It organised resume writing workshops and GD preparation tips. Hopefully this should extend one day to offer personalised mentoring. Though with the attitude we have - and by virtue of us, our juniors have - I don't think it will be easy.

Please note that calling in more companies is not the only way of increasing the number of offers. The alternative is: more jobs per firm. We learn from Zubin et al. that some of the IITs have already started with second rounds. Could you guys just check out the common firms in these IITs and IIT Delhi, and calculate the average offers per firm. Let me know if IIT Delhi's figure is more than the others'. I ll be truly surprised. We could probably do ourselves hell lot of good if we just sit back and think of the reasons for this trend. Haha, we have come back a full cicle, haven't we?

So Zubin, in the end, you should have realised that YOU are also responsible for the "mess" that IIT Delhi's placement stats is in. You talk of poltu as something that recognises merit, and not nepotism and boot licking. You try to discard the entire T&P team as an offshoot of the previous coordinator's eccentricity. And by doing so, you try to project yourself in the good books of some people whose attention who are desperately trying to grab? Stop this kiddish attitude; grow up dude.

zubin said...

[Ankur Kothari] Well, I think that your response just sums up the ethos of all that I had wanted to hear. I think you have said it loud and clear, and so people should now voice their comments directly to you.I just hope that the entire purpose of this blog is resolved.
[Mithrandir] Well, I dont agree that politics is but heaps of shit. Maybe it is, but I wont agree. And yeah, now that the concerned authorities are looking at it, I guess the job is done :)
[Anonymous] I really respect your opinion, and your oh-so-great english, but if you were so blunt about it, you should have first had the courage to write your name or give some hint about ur whereabouts. Now for just a few related facts, and you can confirm it through from whatever sources you have. This might seen a bit personal, but because you have launched a personal attack, I will answer you personally.
1. I have ALWAYS told my juniors, personally so, that even though the trophies are important, its not so at the expense of a good GPA. Just because I didnt want them to commit the same mistakes as I did.
2. Working for a good GPA is a good thing, but its again not the only thing. I could point out various flaws in the CGPA system of IIT, but then it shall open up just another Pandora'sd box.
3. I HAVE done my bit for T&P, whebever asked to. I wasnt working actively, but as the T&P committe will confirm, the Morgan Stanley was my contact in the first place, and it really felt good doing it. And the only reason I couldnt work actively because there was a lot at the hostel level I was looking into, Politics being one of them.
4. LIke I have mentioned before, JEE selects the wrong creed of people in the first place. And yeah, I am still proud of not being a maggu.
5. "King makers" (I really love this word) get placed pretty well I think. One of us is sitting in MS USA (which was probably the best paying job, and yeah it was off-campus) while a lot others are into MS, getting jobs like ITC. And me, my dear friend, if all goes well, should be studying in some IIM next year or working with Kraft, Chicago (Not a bad career, what do you say??)
6. Please tell me whose attention I am trying to grab. I have been looking for someone myself.
7. Why dont u do the checking yourself and come back, its always better to get back with figures at people who throw figures at your face, otherwise you are just whining over some lost cause.
8. I am running out of good sensible points, but it does take a lot of courage to criticise something straight in the face. And I am proud to have that courage, which quiet evidently, you lack.
9. How do you change the mindset of students? Tricky question, no? The students are to be blamed for everything.Then why does IIT select such students in the first place?
By the time I have finished writing this, I have probably figured out who is it. You shouldnt have shied away from publishing your name, and all this attack was uncalled for. And yeah, I am still waiting for my treat, even though now it may never come. Please learn to live with criticism, even from people like me.
(and just for a record, I have NO information about other IIT's, neither have I mentioned it anywhere. What did Zubin et al mean?).

Vibhor said...

[Zubin] Firstly, I am really sorry 'coz I didn't then realise how personal my comments were. But then do you realise how crude your remarks have been about everyone associated with the T&P, and about me? As for putting my name in there, I guess I have made up for that. Don't speak of courage as some trick only you can master. I never thought you wouldn't figure out who wrote that message.

All I am trying to say is that criticizing the T&P is an easy task. But consider for a moment how long it has been active for. Don't you think you have been too casual in writing the blog?

And finally, politics is not always the answer to everything. Accountability is something which can be achieved through non-political avenues. In the present placement committee, even the SAC and AIC GSecs are supposed to be working. But the fact that they choose to stay out of it makes them less accountable?

zubin said...

[Vibhor] Well I might have been crude in writing, but the only reason, and I have stated that above, was that relevant authorities needed to know what people were feeling about their efforts. Now that you have responded, and so have the other members of the team, I guess it makes up for everything written here. And I am really sorry if I ever hurt anyone with my remarks, my only purpose was to voice the frustrations of people who werent too happy with the working in the first place. And wouldnt criticism, if taken in the right vein, only help? I guess that closes the matter for now. Thanks. And even though I apologise for hurting someone personal's sentiments, I wouldnt apologise for wtiting this article. It was a necessity for someone to point it out to the T&P cell.

aditya shankar said...

[Vibhor] If you really are interested in what I am or I d rather say we are doing in lieu of what u should have done feel free to visit UG Math's lab on any of ur spare evening.... may be that wd satiate ur query...

and for ur kind information the lesser mortals too are FIGHTing to get job...
u might ve known this had u been actively involved with those who actually are...trust me i ve seen them fighting...

and for the ppt thing...i dont attend ppts in general.... thats my way of doin things.. i didnt even attend BCG, McKinsey et al... and y dont i attend them.. again u r most welcome to ask me personally...

[ankur] there is no denying that u r working too hard for it... its really commendable but certain sudden burst of condescending remarks tend to overshadow the good work any1 has done.. its almost a law of the universe.. nothing personal against u.. i sincerely tender my apologies if my comment hurt u..and please do see my face...

all said and done..we all hope things change for better..

and this is for all of u.. i deeply believe in an adage..."he who has heart to help has all the right to condemn or criticise"... and even today i stand by it... i am doing my bit for the Tnp..and hope it bears fruit jaldi se...

adios

Vibhor said...

[Aditya] I really appreciate your filling up for me as you mention. But I guess you will take some more time to realise why I talked about the Goldman Sachs PPT thing, or you wouldn't have been that offhand in telling me your way of doing things. Actually your way then is not different from others; that's where the problem arises! And my feeling is that you again misread the meaning of "fighting" for job, though it doesn't matter.

But really all said and done, let's stop this personal bickering. If Zubin thinks that this discussion has served its purpose, he must have his reasons. Sorry for any personal affronts...:(

Vibhor

Musafir... said...

Hi zubin,
Thank you, thank you very much, for the article.
Vaise nacheez ne bhi blogger pe register kiyaa hai : nikhilmahant.blogspot.com but I am sure it wouldnt be upto the mark for you reading it.

zubin said...

[Aditya] I hope that now with people from T&P writing about it, the entire purpose has been stopped, and like Vibhor says, let there be no further personal bickerings.
[Vibhor] Thanks for your views, and presenting your side of the story.
[Nikhil] Well, you seem to have become my greatest fan. :) . Sure your blog should be interesting.
And now, lets just hope that there is a much wider interaction between people from the two sides, and may people work towards securing a 100% job placement. I know, its going to be touch, with the attitude of students (for which, again, the JEE is to blame, in my opinion), but let you all try. (As you all must be knowing, I have already passed out, and have no personal satisfaction from all this. Lets hopw it all adds up for the best placement season ever for IIT.

Anonymous said...
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excuse me said...

vikas mittal got a 7.5 job at iocl. is that shitty?
the other thign is, he deserves it. even better. but lets not confuse matters. i'm still not advocating poltu

zubin said...

{Anonymous] Thanks for your two cents on my views. Now, for my views on you, personally, for I dont know you personally, and as such I can only figure you out by what u have written here:
You are not a particularly brave man in the first place. LIke I always say, criticising someone in the face takes a lot of courage, and you seem to lack that.
Again I believe you could have said these things without using words like F*** and B**** for people, which just makes me believe that you are, at some point, very frustrated at not becoming a G.Sec yourself. Losing your temper like this, you dont deserve to be there. In fact, I feel that the very ethos of your being in IIT should be challanged. Again it seems that you have managed to pass out of IIT with a very good job, which is why you look at other jobs and deem them shitty.
Also, you feel that companies are the best judge of a person, when actually its quite the opposite. And I take defiance to your comments on the Gsecs, because I know them personally (atleast six of them; I dont know the BHM GSec too well..but I atleast know his name (Manoj Kumar), and just for giving respect to his post, wouldnt call him some shit Schedule Caste waala..actually am sorry to say this, but you behave like someone deprived tribesman yourself) , and so I believe that ,G.Sec or not, they are good human beings, something, quite evidently, you are not. At the end of the day, thats all that matters. Your first job can only take you that much far. Its all about achieving satisfaction in whatever you do, and looking at you, I dont think you'll ever be successful, because you can never be happy.
And I would like you to explain the obvious reasons why Shreyas and Mittal wouldnt have got good jobs. I am personally affronted by these comments of yours. I am sure. that once you pass ouyt, these people will be remembered with much more affection han you can ever hope to garner your entire life. I had be surprised if you ever find anyone loving you, or making a good friend. Or else, they might not know you as well as I have you figured you out.
And thanks for your comments again, but come again, think again, and maybe you will find that politics isnt such an evil after all.
[excuse me] Thanks for pointing this out. He surely deserves the best. Try telling Anonymous that.

UP_ka_Jaat said...
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Anonymous said...
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zubin said...

Sorry..but there seems to have been too much written here. And in the best interest of everyone concerned, I am deleting the posts by some nonsensical people. I am a big advocate of freedom of speech, but you guys seemed to have taken it too far. And just to end it all, thanks Kothari.

Anonymous said...

COLDPLAY

I can guess quite a few of the anon commenters and hence have chosen a non de plume that some people are familiar with. The ethic in my case being "don't take names when you can't put yours". Even if its retaliation.

I am a bit disappointed with the way the debate veered(Just me, well!), and I have gone through the pain of reading broken words that somehow fill me with rage when they appear on my cell. Such an assassination of a beautiful language.

The point being, as ZUBIN rightly points out, how do we discard favoritism and insure minimal polarisation? Any select team is bound to have biases. That is the justification for the existence of democracy, however contorted or malfeasant it might seem, it is the best that people have come up with. The supreme argument against democracy is five minutes with the average voter. But thats another tale. Again, the point being you just can not pick and choose.

At this stage of my argument I would be interjected with the whole "voluntary clause". It is never voluntary when you blow up in the face of people you are asking to join, or tell them to contact yourself and mail you in case of any grievances or ideas. Thats the holier than thou attitude that people despise and resent. Why should every one trust a single man's judgement? Isn't that imposition of the worst possible degree?

Until proper fora exist for people to express themselves without feeling second rate discards, there is bound to be back talking and hypocrisy smeared all over the campus. Caesar was both a beloved ruler and a tyrant. History tells us that( and the very good HBO series by the way!). He had Mark Antony and Julius Verinus, honorable men, but he lost Brutus's faith to hearsay.

Then there is the wonderful case of other institutes that have been brought to the front. Bombay holds elections for its TnP , and they are not that bad off. Of course there are lots of other factors, but elections are not a total downer.

Who do we trust? A few wise men or vox populi? I am an egalitarian in spirit and I could argue endlessly in a biased direction. But that is not the point. The point is that the point is being missed. I am sorry to say this Ankur( and the name is because I am sure you know who this is), but the TnP cant be a personal fiefdom.

By the way, I don't begrudge my job. I have been really lucky to be selected to the second company I applied for and be free from wearing the dreaded suits that I cant stand. Its not as bad a job as some people make it out to be. So nothing personal.

Anonymous said...
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arnav said...

Kindly refrain from launching personal attacks on this forum. We all know how much time and efforts Ankur has devoted towards TnP.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
zubin said...

Some people never learn. And I am sorry to say, you people dont deserve to be called humans in the first place. Please refrain from making this page a free for all comment page. Please try to be a bit more considerate of other people opinion. And stop polluting this webpage. Please. Its a humble request.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

COLDPLAY

This is hilarious. Well you shouldnt have given a link on oDc if you wanted a few particular commenters. And we all dont know Arnav, its exactly the kind of presumptive talk that ticks everybody off. Dont act like you know a person or his efforts better than anyone else. This is much like the Chinese Government and Google story. Your statements read like press releases.

I havent read the deleted comments but I am sure that it was human emotion at play.

zubin said...

First of all, I didnt give a link on ODC. And even though I want to consider myself a liberal, I had want people to exercise more self-constraint, I cant bring myself to delete this post, but I again repeat, my post wasnt meant to condemn anybody. And please be more polite in your remarks. As someone metioned, an eye for an eye will only make everyone blind.

The Admirer said...

i think i am a bit late in joining the debate. but still i will agree with zubin for some contexts... but not all. the work that a student puts in for the TnP is voluntary and he has all the right to withdraw from it at his will. but yes sometimes the time of withdrawl is critical and can draw lot of flack if it points out one is being selfish. but finding someone selfish is highly subjective. i agree with karthik tht the fundaa of GPA shud be taken out of mind pretty soon... othrwise u r left in stranded!

caliguliminix said...
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Anonymous said...

Another thing people should know about is that people in Kara are better placed than those in other hostels.
Zubin, do you wish to think that they are smarter / better than their batchmates?

NO. The reason is because kothari has been influencing companies to make concessions for his wing / hostel mates

oak said...

I think this final comment is the most stupid of them all. Are the people who are coming to recruit for the various organizations that stupid and malleable that KOTHARI can influence them? This thing does happen in IIMs but there it is because of the time and comptt constraints that organizations rely on NATIVE judgement. IIT with its relaxed easy pace puts no such strains on the HR people. So if KOTHARI carries that much influence then there is no man better than him to take care of placement activities. And for the record last time also, the most visible "TnP volunteers" were from KARA and KARA had a patheitc placemnt record atleast at the beginning. This hostel wise variation is just a statistical anomaly. Finally, I don't know who you are and I don't care but I 100% certain that Kara people are smarter/better than you.

zubin said...

I am not deleting this post, for people should let pour their views about T&P. I am losing myself a few friends I think, but now, I have stopped caring. TOO Personal attacks unrelated to the topic (and there have been instances when some non-sensical people, on either side of the debate, have tried to malign someone else's integrity) are being deleted, and moderated by me. And the reason I thanked Kothari is because he is carrying on despite drawing so much flak. It takes a lot of courage to do so.

aditya shankar said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
aditya shankar said...

hey guys...there is sumthin fishy goin on here... as far as i remember i didnt post any comment on Feb 2nd... srry Zubin...even though I dont knw what was its content...the fact that it was removed by you it must have been some thing irresponsible and non sensical...srry again... and whosoever used my account..please dont do it again..

Caliguliminix said...

This is really wierd ... a comment supposedly from my profile too was also removed recently, but I didnt post it!

zubin said...

Yeah, I thought so. I could not believe either caliguliminix OR Aditya writing what they had. Hence I removed the post. People. please take care of your accounts. This thing is getting scary.

ManV said...

I may be a little late on this but I really wanted to comment on the remark about Kara's placements. There is no denying the fact that Kara people are better placed. The reason for this in my opinion is that owing to sensible company of some knowledgable guys and becoz of being in centre of the TNP universe, Kara folks are better prepared and perform better in interviews. They are less ignorant by default. This brings us back to the point made earlier for improving performance of students in the selection process. With a little knowledge and motivation I think it is possible to have 9 karakoram's next year. I have a suggestion: Some 4th year dulla should be given responsibilty for organising company specific talks between recruited students and next years batch. Since placements begin in July, I feel now is the time for it or it might be too late.

Another radical suggestion is that once a placement guy gets his job, he should be given the option to leave without controversy. More people can be inducted from the unplaced pool in his place.

Amateur Blogger said...

Wow! My first visit to your blog, Zubin, and seems like I've stepped on a landmine. There seem to be a lot of issues being discussed here and frankly, I gave up before reading all the 47 comments, so please excuse me if I repeat some things or miss out on some, but here are my two cents.

I have had the chance to observe IIT Delhi and the Placement cell from various perspectives and I shall try and encompass the various points of view, being:
1) Someone who's worn the staircase leading to the T&P. (For the record, I was rejected by over 20 companies)
2) Someone who has borne the brunt of being a five point someone.
3) Someone who is grateful to the system of IITs for the job he currently has.
4) Someone who has been on both sides of the interview table at IIT-D. (Any comments I make are as the individual I am and do not reflect in any way, the views of my employer.

Well, now that we've got the base building out of the way, the rest of it is going to be pretty unstructured, so delete it/skip reading now if you're not ready for it.

People:IMO, there are two types of people at IIT, those who have the desire to learn and improve, and those who don't even know what that is.

That desire to learn might manifest itself in various ways. Some might choose only to excel in their chosen field of study, some on the other extreme would want to explore all that the world has to offer them, and then you have all the intermediates. These people have different roles to play in society and whatever role they choose, an IIT education is perfect training grounds for it. IIT is like Boot Camp, where you do not neccessarily pick up skills you require for a particular job, but if you have the desire to learn, you have ample opportunities to pick up skills which will bode you well in life, no matter what you do and more importantly, make you better people. Face it, not too many people want to be around you if you're a stud at what you do, but are basically a conceited bastard.

Then there's the other category of people, the one's who go emerge at the end of their 4-5 years at IIT with significantly more knowledge but little change as the people they are. To them, I really don't know what to say. You're pretty perfect examples of what you are.

Of choices:One has to understand that the decision to enter an IIT is taken by most people (or by their parents, for them) when they're 16 or less, and you really can't expect a 16 year old to realise what he wants to do with his life. Club that with the small-town background of most entrants or the fact that they spent the two most important years of their school lives buried in books, they just haven't seen enough life to make that decision yet. As a result, a lot of them want to drop out somewhere along the way, or just get disillusioned with the system but still carry on. To be honest, I didn't have any clarity even till the time I got my first job, after being politely turned down by over 20 companies. I so didn't want a techie job. I was a five pointer who wanted a consulting job. My point being, we have no idea what we want from our lives. We just keep trying to convince ourselves that we do.

Ever wondered why so many people on campus want consulting jobs? Are you saying that you're more skilled for a consulting job than for a techie job? Or is that something you just want even though your skills might be equivalent in both roles?
What really are the factors that guide your ranking of companies? My guess is that, in more cases than not, the answer is money. Being a male dominated campus, we take the "my package bigger than yours" game a little too far. I'm guilty of the same, and I'm not denying its importance, but you need to think a little more strategically. Think beyond that first year in a job. Think beyond the money to the amount of time you'll be spending at work every day/week and does that leave you with enough time to pursue things you've always wanted to? You'll have a car, an apartment, then a bigger car, a bigger apartment.... it'll never end, but your life will eventually. That's all the philosophy I can manage.

The T&P can never improve unless decisions are taken by students. You really can't expect some people who have not a clue about the state of the industry, the different types of opportunities available, but judge companies only on the basis of that one number Cost to Company. And when a company comes along and says, we only want to state the salary component and do not want to include fictitious stuff into that number, they're told that they're just not paying enough and should come later in the year.
Why does a 6L package from one company result in more money every month, than an 8L package from another company?
Why doesn't the reputation of the company, it's ranking as an employer, it's brand count for anything when giving it a slot to come on campus?

I do not want to go into implementation details, but the answers to those questions will, I'm sure, give you an idea about what's wrong with the system. Another data point would be the way B-schools handle their placements.

Finally, whoever runs the T&P, needs to be professional. Corporates today are used to a certain code of conduct, which at the very minimal includes sticking to one's word. If a company is told that the day would be exclusively reserved for them, and then they find out that two other companies are recruiting the same day with candidates shuttling between them, that is an unkept commitment.

Bottomline, people who decide which companies come on campus when, have to have a stake in it. If they are just 9-5ers who have to take their 15 tea breaks in a day, it's never happening....

zubin said...

[Tushar] Wow...It was brilliant. You pretty much summarised all that I had to say. Even though I think I didnt use the right words for it. Thanks again.

Robert Frust said...

Wanted to second Zubin on Tushar (i.e. if he is 'the amateur blogger'. Also thought I'd make it a nice 50. :)