Day 1 at Stanford University.
Today is my day 1 at Stanford University. I have landed here with full scholarship. I want to reflect back on that one day, Dec, 25, 2021, when I was 14 years old and in 8th grade.
Let us start with Christmas Eve. We had a fight, I kept explaining how my other friends are vacationing, watching movies, gaming and I am here taking SSAT to get into the best high schools. It is a total waste of my time. I could have finished two more Pirates of Caribbean movie(I already watched 4 parts in the last few weeks) or played 40 hours of the new game that I purchased or binge watch Marvelous Netflix show. Instead, I am here preparing for English, Essay, Math for admissions into the top 10 best high schools in silicon valley. World is not fair to me. Especially my parents who are evil. Making me work during the holidays.
Christmas day, I woke up, it was a different day, I took shower in the morning, where I can feel the rain drops on my sun roof. It’s like I am getting wet in the rain but not really. I can look up and see the rain pour but it is a nice warm bath on my skin. I got the best of the both worlds. Ohh… today I need to take the 3 hour exam(huge Sigh..). Coming back to reality. My dad made me two eggs and my mom made me tea which gave me some strength. When the entire world is celebrating Christmas, here I am preparing. Remember those movies of a villain introduction, there will be this thunder and lightning. There was literally thunder and lightning. I was convinced that this SSAT was unnecessary practice and even the nature is saying that. But my Mom and Dad did not budge. I went in, sat in front of the computer and then there is this password problem. Another sign that I should not do it!!! The Last one. Some one save me please from this torture. Nobody, not even my super heroes, wait its Christmas, where is the “Santa” to save me? May be he got stuck in the chimney?
Fast forward, Day 1 at Stanford with full scholarship. There are many such days, weeks, months that I thought I am wasting my life in books, tests, exams, home works, assignments. However, I continued to do it, just to prove others that I am good at all these things. I already know that I am good, but others need evidence. I may NOT be that ideal student in the class, the “teacher pet” types. However I do have lot of respect for my teachers and what nobody understands is we go to school to have fun, to play in the 1 acre land at peninsula and get educated, not the other way around. Today it may look as though it is the first day of something great. But it is not, it was the last 4 years, each and every day was a challenge. It pushed me to an uncomfortable situations. I need to sacrifice my screen time to show evidence of my talent to this world. By finishing assignments, by building a humanoid Robot(my little brother who follows me everywhere), by mastering math, by designing 3D structures that nobody at my age have done, by deep diving on AI and built a model in Python that can predict the next Pandemic, researching on solar power and building solar powered fans, boats and sold it for profit. I did not stop there, I built solar powered drones that can fly for a long duration(10 days with just solar power), patented and sold.
But all these things started on that Christmas day where I pushed myself and through the next few days, it wasn’t easier for a 14 year old kid, but that sacrifice created an habit in me that to achieve those big things, I need to trust and believe in me and in my well wishers(Teachers, Parents, Family Friens). The high school was an elevator to Stanford. Where other kids have to take 100000(hundred thousand steps), this high school gave me an elevator with 10 floors. Still each and every floor I have to pave it by myself. The challenge that I enjoyed. Sometimes I work late night on a research topic, designing the third floor of Avenue school and I loose track of time. Somebody have to pull me out of computer so that I can get a sleep before the next morning where I bike back to my school and share my designs. People say 3D model is complicated, I say its fun!!!!
It was not easy, there where days that I want to give up, there where situations that I questioned, while there was some fun subjects, there was also some subjects that I hate, which is a “necessary evil” for college admission. I did that too. There were some hard times that I want to quit. But I kept going, going, going and today I am at Stanford.
What I learnt about Success is few things
- The little steps even the ones that I don’t believe does matter. Keep delivering small victories(tests, assignments, home works, etc..), get back from your small defeats and plough forward to get to that grand success.
- I was never alone, even though it felt that way. My teachers, parents, coaches, Uncles, Aunts, cousin sisters, my dad friends, my mom friends all believed in me. They kept saying that I have lot of potential. I am unique. I am different, I am here in this world to do something BIG. However potential can be converted to victories only through performance
- The sacrifices that I made. I said NO to many things. I said NO to bad influences/so called friends, I said NO to many movies, shows, games etc.. These sacrifices made me strong and I built something called “will power”, this tool is what I am going to use in the next 4 years at Stanford.
- My Patience on subjects that I did not understand for the first time and my teachers and parents patience on me when I yelled at them, when I was not at my best, when I was way down, they had patience in me. Two way Patience is very important for success.
- All these hard work, friends, family, my new skills are amount to nothing if GOD was not on my side. There are very talented people out there, they are Kids who are genius but don’t have opportunity. I am blessed with Good Family, Good Teachers and Good Friends and that is because of GOD who has put me at the right spot.
NOW!!! Stanford, here I come. Are you ready for me?