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Just another day at IIT Madras

There’s a lot students can do at IIT Madras, apart from just studies.

education Updated: Jun 08, 2016 14:43 IST
Sharika Mahadevan
Sharika Mahadevan
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
IIT Madras,Indian Institute of Technology,IIT
At IIT Madras, a lot depends on one’s interest the institute provides immense opportunity for students to pursue what they like.(Handout Image)

It is 5pm. That’s when my roommate’s alarm started chiming. I tried waking her up, but all I received was loud snores in response. So, I gave up.

Rubbing my eyes, I grabbed my watch to check the time and realised that I was late for my athletics practice that starts at 5:15 pm. Quickly changing into my sports attire and grabbing my jogging shoes on my way out, I rushed out of my hostel to get to the ‘Manohar C Watsa stadium’.

Rains unfortunately played havoc, and the meet was called off. Despite that, the upgraded infrastructure of the stadium has made it a hit amongst residents and students and personally speaking, the stadium is probably my favourite place in the institute, with young and not-so-young energetic people bustling around. Stepping into the stadium took my lethargy away, and the coach rounded up all the athletes for a rigorous, yet fun, session till 7 pm.

I rode my bicycle towards the mess after the athletics practice.

Having come to the mess alone, my companion in the mess hall was my mother, with whom I exchanged my day’s events over the phone. After gobbling down whatever I had picked after a very careful survey, I started the trek back to my hostel. On my way back, I spotted the music club jamming near the library. The Cultural Clubs scene in IIT Madras is very strong, and events are held throughout the year to encourage students to participate and learn extra-curricular activities. Places like the Central Library lawns and the Himalaya Lawns act as popular spots for team meetings and a myriad of institute teams ranging from Saarang and Shaastra to IViL engage in racking their brains to come up with new initiatives in these places.

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On my way to the hostel, I also passed the Gymkhana where the rest of the jocks were finishing their final warm-downs. The floodlights were switched off which meant it was some time past 8 pm.

I finally returned to my room to find my roommate up. We talked for sometime, and the fact that I have been able to find friends who understand and support me, even if they can’t relate to me, has been one of the things that I appreciate about IIT Madras.

After taking care of my social life on Facebook and Instagram and catching up with the latest Coldplay tracks, I slowly moved to take care of my to-dos. Having no immediate task at hand, I found myself at a fork, torn between this novel Team of Rivals and preparing for my exams. I read Team of Rivals until I felt sleepy and had just enough energy to set an alarm on phone.

My alarm started buzzing from 7 am. I found myself waking up after 15 minutes and calculating the time left before the 8 am class. With roughly 20-30 minutes at hand, I cycled quickly to the mess hall. Vadas are a personal delight and being on good terms with the caterers earns you extras. The timetable that we follow at IIT Madras gives us a lot of leeway and as classes are spread out through the day.

The most unique thing about IIT Madras is the Centre for Innovation . Funded by alumni and our institute, this is one place where the students are free to explore the world of technology. Robots, astronomy, car racing etc are activities that are carried out in earnest in this place and with cutting edge technology available. Students have gone on to do wonders – like designing a racing car!

IIT Madras is like a home away from home and I couldn’t hope to be any place else.

The author is a second year biological engineering student at IIT Madras.

Coordinated by Rozelle Laha

First Published: Jun 08, 2016 14:43 IST