Posted on : 25/12/2019 03:45pm
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Design and Engineering are the cornerstones of every successful product. Design is driven by functionality while Engineering is driven by technology. One school of thought says designers (non-engineers) and engineers complement each other.
But Industrial products require engineers with design thinking, to meet stringent and precise specifications of performance, stability, safety and tolerance.
Sanchita, our next pathbreaker, talks to Shyam Krishnamurthy from The Interview Portal about her work as Mechanical Design Engineer in designing reactors.
Sanchita, can you tell us about your background?
I was born and bought up in a middle class family in New Delhi. My father is a businessman and my mother is a primary teacher. Talking about my childhood, I have always been curious and interested in how things work. I remember disassembling a wall clock when I was little just to see what the mysterious reason for its ticking was. So, I believe somewhere deep within I knew that engineering was the field for me.
I completed my schooling from Ryan International School, Rohini, Delhi. Apart from academics, where like all parents, my parents felt I needed to excel in, I would like to give credit especially to my mother for making sure that I took part in extra-curricular activities. This way I engaged in several activities like classical dancing, took part in debates, interjections and speeches along with studies. I took the science stream with Engineering Graphics in 11th standard. In 12th standard, being good both in studies and co-curricular activities lead to my selection to represent my school at the ‘Mission to Mars’ themed competition at NASA Space Center Houston, USA. It was truly a rewarding experience and our team won the first position. Looking back at my schooling and interests, I can say that early exposure to science and technology laid the foundation for my career.
What did you do for graduation/post graduation?
I completed my B.Tech in Mechanical and Automation Engineering from HMR Institute of Technology and Management under Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, New Delhi. During my bachelor’s, I wrote two technical papers and presented one of them at the India International Science Festival 2015 held at IIT Delhi.
I completed my M.Tech in Mechanical Engineering from University of Engineering and Technology under Maharshi Dayanand University, Haryana, with TEQIP scholarship and two technical papers under my belt. I presented my thesis paper at the India International Science Festival 2017 at Anna University and IIT Madras, Chennai.
What were the key influences that led you to this career?
The key influencer in my life hs been my mother. Hailing from the small town of Nainital, her early struggles of studying and settling in New Delhi inspired me to push my boundaries every single day. Other key influencers I look up to are Michelle Obama, Simon Sinek and Indra Nooyi.
Besides the constant support of my family, I have met some remarkable people who have helped me shape my career. My mentor, retired Col. Devendra Dahiya, has always been a pillar of wisdom and strength.
First position at the Mission to Mars themed competition held at NASA Space Center Houston (USA), Technical presentations during B.Tech/ M.Tech at the India International Science Festivals held at IIT /Madras respectively and Mechanical Engineering Internship at ARIES, Nainital were a huge motivating factor for me.
While job hunting, I had an important realisation. It stuck me that it is vital that we identify which positions intrigues us before applying for a role. Usually job seekers keep applying at their dream companies with no specific role in mind. I believe it is essential to first figure out what drives you and which pre-requisites you need to possess, and then apply for the job.
Tell us about your career path
Right after completing B.Tech, I decided to pursue higher studies. When I got admitted at the M.Tech Mechanical Engineering course at UIET, MDU, I was happy for two reasons. One, I was offered the TEQIP Scholarship which helped me be financially independent to pursue the course and second, I had enough time to hone my skills to search and apply for a technical position.
The TEQIP scholarship was granted on merit basis (B.Tech aggregate percentage) for the first semester and was subsequently granted on the basis of the semester performance.
Your advice to students based on your experience?
Keep talking to people in diverse field and make LinkedIn your primary search engine. This site is amazing in terms of finding interesting jobs, people and career paths!
Currently my plan is to continue working at Honeywell UOP and learn the nuances mechanical designing used in different refinery technologies across the globe. For the future, I hope to continue working in the field where I learn something new each day because as they say, ‘If you have a passion for learning, you will never cease to grow’.
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