This true story of Prashanth from Hyderabad will teach you a lesson or two about how to survive and succeed in your career
Especially, if you have screwed-up your academics in Bachelor’s Degree with backlogs, then this is must read.
Contents of his original experience was edited for clarity and errors.
Enter Prashanth ….
With great difficulty, I have completed my Bachelor’s in Information Technology in 2014 from SNIST, Hyderabad.
It was not an easy journey for me to say the least. I joined B. Tech in 2010, where I believe I misused the freedom given to me by my parents.
I neglected my studies, and my academics were a testimonial to that. In my first semester, I scored 65% with one backlog, my second I scored 61% with two backlogs, and in my third, I scored 59% with three backlogs.
For the next two years I continued on the same trend and consistently failed in at least 2-3 subjects every semester. In my final (senior) year, like everyone else, I began to prepare for my future.
Masters Degree in America
The idea of going for a master’s degree in the U.S. was always in my mind, but I never prepared for that.
I looked at my academics and knew that they were pretty bad. I only had a cumulative of 53% in my final year (4-1), and had almost ten backlogs.
Time flew by and I found myself in my 4-2 semester, with my cumulative at 54% with eight backlogs. By this time, all of my friends had already started applying to universities in the U.S. Others prepared for campus placements. With my current academics, I couldn’t apply to either.
I put on a brave face for everyone and acted like everything was fine, but inside I felt like I was going nowhere in my life. Forget the MS and a good job, I thought, I won’t even be able to complete my B.Tech.
Within a few days, I had to take my final year’s exams and write supplementary exams simultaneously. It was not close to being easy. Everything appeared new when I opened the book, and I was literally beating my head on the wall when trying to understand the simplest things.
Every single day was a battle day for me. I attended all the backlog exams and sat through the entire three hours (I usually finished my exam in two hours. But obviously the situation was a bit different now).
Success comes with Hard Work
I spent many sleepless nights studying important questions. Finally, I cleared all the backlogs and scored a 75% in my final year, final semester, along with scoring 89.5% in the final project (Not a great score, I must say).
Application to Graduate School in U.S.A.
Soon, I applied to following universities for Spring 2015 semester.
- California State University at Los Angeles (CSULA)
- Murray State University
- University of Illinois at Springfield (UIS)
- University of Colorado at Denver
- California State University at Fresno
I got accepted in CSULA, Murray and UIS and rejected from CSUF (MS IN SE), saying limited seats were available. UCD gave me no explanation for me rejection.
F-1 Visa Interview
F-1 Visa appointment slots were not available in U.S. Consulate in Hyderabad, so I went to Mumbai.I saw a lot of people from Andhra Pradesh at U.S. Consulate in Mumbai.
I think about 25% of the students were going with NPU for their visa.
I was very nervous, sweating and looked like shit. However, I maintained composure and answered confidently to all the questions asked by the VO, and got my Visa approved.
Before me, VO rejected a guy who applied for H-1B visa.
Lessons Learned – Work Hard
My only message to all my juniors is to avoid neglecting your academics at any point of time.
Have fun in college, but getting a good percentage is equally important.
Once you get a backlog (failing a course or grade), it will always be a vigorous uphill for you, and backlogs are difficult to pass.
As far as I am concerned, I always believed that I am more than what any of my marks tell about me.
I might have failed, but I am not a failure.
Now that I got my F-1 visa, my immediate goal is to get a good GPA in my master’s program.
I don’t want to repeat my bad academics here in the U.S.
I am flying on December 28, 2014 to Dallas, where I will be staying for a few days, then flying to Springfield on January 7, 2015.
So, this is my story guys. All the best to Prospective Students.
Now, this is my story of survival and success till date.
I’m writing my own American Dream. What is your story?