For students graduating from the Indian Institute of Management, Lucknow, its protective boundary walls will now become home to countless memories they made in the two years of their stay.
A few hours before the 31st convocation ceremony was to begin on Monday at IIM-L, many of the 435 students were seen hugging their friends, taking pictures and selfies on the 286-acre campus.
They said they will always cherish their life at one of the best business schools in the country and take forward the beautiful relationships they formed during their two years’ stay.
“IIM Lucknow has been, to quite an extent, transformative for me. It has taught me not just at the academic front but also on the personal front. I had always considered myself an introvert. Hence, I was a little apprehensive about this whole world of MBA. But two years into it, my perspective has changed,” Divya Malhotra said.
The 23-year-old Delhi resident said she has become a more confident, independent and emotionally stable person. And all of this couldn’t have been possible without some wonderful people she met on campus who supported her and believed in her more than she did.
“Managing everything on my own, accomplishing things I never thought I could ever achieve, messing up (sometimes badly) and still being able to hold myself together - are some of the invaluable things that you can only get after going through the rigours of a management institute,” she added.
But for Shresthi Agarwal, the two years at IIM-L are difficult to summarise in words.
“It is an experience that changed us from a person who was just a random person into a polished MBA graduate with a legacy of 30 years of IIM Lucknow,” the 26-year-old said.
“In the sleepless nights, unending assignments, hectic hellish schedules, awesome flora and fauna of beautiful campus, I found myself. These two years are etched into my heart and soul and leaving the campus for me is like leaving a part of me behind. The journey I experienced is short of words. You need to be here and live two years of the world’s best journey,” Agarwal, who hails from Bareilly, added.
Many amongst them also found love within these walls. And, of course, the everlasting bonds of friendship were also forged.
For Jay M Shah, it was a story of extreme ups and downs - just like a rollercoaster journey. “We did learn quite a lot thanks to it. There was also a beautiful life beyond books. Clubs and committees constantly gave us something interesting to do in each and every sphere of holistic development,” he said.
Competitions, quizzes, workshops - ranging from art and dance to marketing and finance - added to the learning experience.
“We have an excellent sport club too. Managing hobbies with the rigours of IIM was difficult in the first year, but things got better in the second,” Jay said. “Living together, we have been through myriad situations much like a Bigg Boss show. Tense times during placements saw the real nature of people visible and appreciable.”
Sharath Kumar, a student who refused job offer and wants to become author said, “There’s a strange sense of an ending that has seeped through my skin and won’t let go. Two years may not sound like much but it was a great stay.”
Kumar said he will miss the people at IIM-L the most.
“And not just my fellow journeymen, my fellow students but my teachers, my mentors, the faculty, the mess team, everybody. For two years this place became home. At times a difficult home, but home nevertheless,” said Sharath.