Sunday, July 4, 2010

Two states - The story of my internship :P

I am pursuing a course in my college that has a total of 10 semesters and it mandates a 6 month industry internship during the 7th semester. The usual procedure, as always, companies come to college and conduct written tests and interviews and recruit students for internship (with a good amount of salary - or should i call it stipend?).

Two states - The story of my internship :P


In order to follow the companies' policies, i will call the companies X,Y,Z, etc. ;-)

The Confusion
My aim was to join X. There was a lot of confusions with it. Some said they were coming to college as a part of their campus recruitment drive. Some said they weren't coming to college for absorbing interns. After lots of such dizzy stuff, finally an HR from X talked to me and agreed to set me up with a te interview and I could not have been more excited in life (except for few other moments that happened on mid june, 2008).

First Round with X
At last the day came and i was sitting in my college's so called Smart and Secure Environment Lab (where i spent most of my 2nd and 3rd year of college in the name of project). I was sitting in silence waiting for the call, which came sharp at the very time they had scheduled it. The interviewer drilled me for one hour with questions on algorithms for which i gave the worst possible answers and code (which i realized thoroughly only after a few days). The HR called back again and asked me how did my interview go for which i said it was ok. The HR said she'll set up another round of interview in two days which made me think that i had cleared the first round.

Second Round with X
I had to attend my second round from my home as i fell ill at that time. The second round was surprisingly short (just one question) for which i was asked to mail the code. I did and it was obviously not up to the standards the interviewer expected (but i still had some hopes on getting one more round of interview). Finally, as it turned out, i got a rejection email from the HR two days later. It was a heartbreak. But I had to survive with it and was in the urge of looking into other available options.

The Options
At this point i felt like in the middle of no man's land as i was totally relying upon getting into X for this internship. There were many other companies coming to the college for internship recruitment in the meantime, upon which, one specific company (lets call it Y) is of our interest. Y is located in bangalore and it was a regular mass recruiter in our college. My resume was sent to Y through college and they said i will have an interview soon. Whereas i was not very much inclined towards joining Y. To explain this story further, i need to tell a flashback.

Flashback - **TWO MONTHS EARLIER**
It was a normal day and i woke up with the irritation of the need to go to college. It was when i realised that there was a programming contest in a big event in college. It is supposedly the highest cash giving event to be held in PSG Tech. After calling some 10 of my classmates, i was finally able to pick up a partner for the contest. We went to college around 10'o clock and found that the registration charges for the contest was 150 rupees. My partner started staring at me as we never expected it to be so expensive. I somehow convinced him to pay (by telling that we can get it back via the prize money ;-)). We went to the prelims hall and to our astonishment, the longest hall in PSG Tech (A310) was almost completely filled with participants (Believe me, there were atleast 200 teams).

We got our question paper and my partner started staring at me again as there were too many questions (50 if i remember correctly) that were to be solved in 30 minutes. We did our best and solved almost 40 to 45 questions. And obviously we were confident of clearing prelims, which we did. The finals was in the same day evening and was supposed to last for two and half hours. It involved hands on solving of 8 different problems (one of which was, "Given a sudoku, solve it" :P). We were able to solve 7 of them well ahead of the time frame and decided to skip the sudoku question. They said results will be announced only after the judges evaluate the programs. Since i had no patience, i returned home and my partner returned to hostel.

That was when the story took a twist, I got a call from an unknown number saying that i have won first place in the programming contest and that i am eligible for an internship interview with company Z (Hint: the person from whom i got the call is my colleague now). It was because the contest was sponsored by Z. Apart from that we also won 5k of cash which was in the first place my objective to attend this contest ;-). The people from Z said that i will contacted back after a few days regarding the internship interview. And i came to know that the work location of Z was chennai.

Back to Present
Ok, now that i have mentioned about both Y and Z, it was time for me to choose one. The risk involved here is if i decide to give a shot at Z and if i don't get through, then Y also would be gone by then. So, i had to make a choice and i did choose to risk yet again. I sent my resume to Z and they said i will be having 3 or 4 rounds of phone interviews and we agreed upon the dates of various rounds.

Interviews Galore
It was the day before my first round of interview with Z, i suddenly got a call from an HR of Y and i was informed that i will be having a phone interview with Y that evening. I was shocked and without knowing what to do, i decided to underperform. The time came and the interview with Y started. It went on for around 15 minutes, where they did not ask me much even to underperform. The next day i attended the first round with Z and it went on for around one hour where i was drilled in every possible domain under computer science. The same day evening, Y announced their results and i was officially selected as an intern in Y. Since college never knew about Z, i went to my dean and explained about my situation and that i am interested in Z. Whereas my dean's strong response was, "You have to join Y".

Chennai Vs Bangalore
As i was trying to convince myself about the shock that i have to join Y, i had to send a mail to Z explaining the scenario. The next day, i got a call from Z saying that they were also ready absorb me as an intern. That was when the whole race started. I had to beg dean and the placement officer of my college daily for about one weeks (during which i hardly ate or slept) and atlast i got the fruit of joining Z as per my wish. As a matter of fact, The college people tried to handle the matter diplomatically as a result of which i got a call letter from Y after i had already joined Z. Finally, i won the war of chennai over bangalore :-)

Happy Ending
Here i am, doing my internship with Z as i wanted to. And i really like whatsover that has happened to me in the past two months of my internship. I have learnt a lot (not just with respect to computers). You can easily know what Z is by visiting my facebook profile here !!

Honestly, I don't expect any comments for this post :P

-Vignesh :-)