Saumya suvarna Hello. I am Saumya suvarna, a final year Btech student from VIT Chennai. Any questions regarding the Venkat Scholarship are welcome.
Could you brief up top 3 things why one should apply this Scholarship? You can also mention the after Scholarship experience too.
Saumya Suvarna 1) The phenomenal opportunity to visit and interact with some of the greatest minds in the industry today. The visit to the YouTube and Google Headquarters in SF is one of the best and most humbling experience one could have.
2) The opportunity to have your vision recognised. The Venkat Scholars have the opportunity to use their grant money to pursue their goals. It also recognises the challenges you have faced to get to where you are and the hard work you have put in.
3) The opportunities that it will open up for you in the future.
What quality do you think a candidate should definitely have to get this scholarship
Saumya Suvarna I think a candidate should definitely have perseverance to pursue their vision. Since the Venkat sholarship recognises these failures as stepping stones to success I think it is important to keep trying.
Would you recommend this program?
Saumya Suvarna Definitely. It is one of the best things that a student could achieve.
Who were your Letter of Recommenders? How did you go about choosing them? How was the process like?
Saumya Suvarna My recommendation letters came from people who I have worked closely with and who can attest to my goals and vision.
I think it’s important to have a LOR from someone you have worked closely who can vouch for you
What are some of the things for college students to explore while in college? Could you give some insights
Saumya Suvarna The first thing I would recommend would be to find what you are passionate about. While in college I would recommend for people to definitely apply for scholarships and grants to pursue their passion. I cannot say much about other branches but in CS I would recommend that people do tryout hackathons and also programs like GSOC, Outreachy etc.
What is the impact that the scholarship has created in your life? How are you using the 225USD Project grant?
Saumya Suvarna It was a surreal experience getting this scholarship. I feel more confident about pursuing the things that I believe in and it has definitely opened up many avenues for me. I have used the grant to ensure people know about the advances in technology and can leverage it to raise the quality of life
Could you mention some of activities which you were part of in college? Have you won any other Scholarship/Opportunities while in college?
Saumya Suvarna There were a lot of internal events that I was a part of. I was invited to attend the emerging world workshop by MIT, I have completed my GSOC, I was part of the team with Mashrin that won a few online hackathons by Intel, University of Dallas etc. I did about 800 hrs of community service and some research and projects.
What advice will you give a First year/second year CSE student
Saumya Suvarna Don’t be complacent and don’t be afraid. Keep trying out new things even if you fail at first. The first two years are very crucial and lay a foundation for the rest of your professional career and academic life. You’re going to fail and that’s ok. Everyone does. Keep trying. It’s going to work out.
What advice do you give on writing the essays for application?
Saumya Suvarna In my opinion, it is very important to be true to yourself. I think it is really important to talk about what you are passionate about and what really drives you. It would be helpful if you can talk about the difficulties that you faced in your life and how did it motivate you to pursue the path that you did. It is good to highlight how it helps people to embrace computer science.
What do you ‘think’ was why your application stood apart from rest of students applied? Some tips too:)
Saumya Suvarna I would recommend to be 100% real and honest. I wrote my application brutally honestly with all that I was passionate about. I would definitely ask everyone to write about what they are passionate about. I think that writing about what you really believe in will make your application stand out because that is you. It is unique and amazing.
I mainly focused on talking about what I have done to grow computer science in the community and the adversities I have faced till now. I also focused on how it changed me and my visions for the future.
Could you share some of momentous(also Fun) occasions you had in the Silicon Valley Retreat?
Saumya Suvarna Well the whole trip was amazing. Deepak was an amazing person and it was really nice spending time with him. Meeting Susan was an incredible experience. Roaming around in SF, spending time with the other scholars, discovering, learning…. I can’t think of anything that wasn’t fun actually. I think it was really nice that it was around Halloween. That’s something I really wanted to experience
What preparations you did before applying for the scholarship
Saumya Suvarna I didn’t really prepare for the scholarship. I found out about it and thought about applying.
I am a first year student(just wrote sem ends), what should I focus on writing in the essays.
Saumya Suvarna Hi you should focus on writing about the adversities that you have faced to reach the position you are in right now and your vision for the future and how you plan to use computer science to make it better.
I am from VIT Vellore,just finished my first year
What suggestions would you like to give me?
Also can you list the opportunities you should utilize as a VIT student
Saumya Suvarna VIT Vellore has a lot of things happening on campus and a lot of seniors who have many achievements under their belt. You could join the chapters that align with your interests. If I’m not mistaken there’s a developer student club in VIT Vellore which would be an amazing place to learn from your peers. Keep looking out for opportunities from beyond your campus and utilise the opportunities that you will have for research.Do try to find out what area you are passionate about and give yourself time to learn about it in detail.
I’m an Electronics and Communication Engineering Student. But, I focus on various fields in CS. Does that have effect on my chance?
Saumya Suvarna I don’t think it affects your chance. As long as you are passionate about computer science and spreading it in your community, you are good.