The worth of any program can only be judged upon hearing the views of those people who have experienced it first hand. Providing the point of view of a student, past interns through Summer in a Startup share their experiences and explain how they benefited from the internship.
I was looking around for a short course/job/intern that I could do in the summers in order to spend my time productively, and it was then that I read about the CEL Summer in a Startup Program. There were quite a few options in the list, but because I’m an economics dualite, I chose to apply for the microfinance firm Eko India Ltd. The pay was decent (7k/month), the work seemed exciting, and the company was located in Delhi, which is my hometown. So I sent in my CV and got shortlisted for the telephonic interview, which took place a couple of days later and consequently, I was selected.
We were interning in the Marketing division and were working directly under the Chief Marketing Officer. For the first week or so, we were given a general introduction to Eko, and the work that we were expected to do. Unlike what you would expect from a startup, most of the people working there had bagloads of experience under their belts and had all quit their previous jobs because they really believed in what Eko was doing. This served as a huge motivational factor for us.
Our stay at Eko had been divided into two phases and we were supposed to finish one project in each of the phases. At the end of each project, we were to give a presentation detailing the work we’d done. We were told at the onset that the presentations would be attended by all the top people there, including the CEO, the COO and all the other permutations and combinations of C’s and O’s that you can think of, so slacking off was definitely not an option.
Our first project was the creation financial diaries of Eko’s customers, finding out their grievances with the service, and suggesting remedies for the same. This entailed going out, visiting the customers and Eko centres, interviewing the people in detail and then filling in our reports. Since the customer segment Eko targets belongs to the lower income bracket, our work had us going to the poorer parts of Delhi to spend time with the people there and understand their lives. It was quite an eye opener. The second project was about studying the youth as a segment that Eko could target in the future, which again meant interaction, understanding what the customers expected. After the completion of each phase, we were given a week to compile all our data, analyze it and then present it along with our recommendations to Eko. It was gratifying to see how well both our presentations were received. The farewell was pretty awesome too with the whole startup bidding us adieu with cakes and gifts.
All in all, it was a great experience, and something that I would love to do again, if given the chance. Everyone at Eko was very supportive and encouraging; so much so that never for a moment did we feel that we did not belong there. Personally, the stint there did wonders for my confidence, and for this, I can’t thank CEL enough.
Kapil Vatwani- BITS, Pilani
It was the during mid of my second semester when I decided to do something fruitful in the two and half month long summer break and started searching for some internship or project. It was then that I came across the Summer in a Start-Up program by Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership, BITS Pilani. I went through the profile of all the start ups and found Grey Orange Robotics Pvt. Ltd. to be best suited to my interests. I sent my CV for the profile of Curriculum Design Engineer and was selected for the same after a personal interview with the Director of the company, Akash Gupta. Although I had other internship options also available, but I decided to stick with GOR (as we call it). And now in hindsight I feel that it was a right choice that I made.
Working with GOR is a great experience (Yes, I am still working with them). It is a great feeling to work with a bunch of dedicated people who are always there to clear your doubts and motivating you and helping you in achieving your targets.
The first half of my internship was more of a learning experience. I worked on a number of platforms ranging from humanoid robots to line tracking bots, from school level robotics to college level robotics. I always found myself surrounded by a bunch of enthusiastic people, who guided me through my way and made me aware of the new stuff going out there.
The second half was aimed at applying my knowledge on to my projects. I developed a program for a humanoid hand working. I also developed the curriculum for school robotics program. In addition to this I also worked on the BIOLOID Humanoid KIT.
But my journey with GOR didn’t just end after summers. Thereafter I was a part of a number of workshops conducted by GOR. I am currently a part of school robotics program run by GOR. In addition to this the knowledge that I gained during my summer internship is helping me to build my own projects this APOGEE and also helping me to implement my new ideas.
All this has become true just because of GOR and CEL’s SIS program. I am thankful to both of them for helping me discover my passion and providing me an opportunity to work in my interest field. I hope that this time also students get to discover their passion and their interest through SIS.
“Best of Luck for your Summers”.