Friday, April 22, 2011

All I wanted to speak about CAT - Part 3 - The Exams, The interviews and the End.

Note: This is a post meant from's famous "All I wanted to speak about CAT" thread. People preparing for CAT, and in need of motivation, inspiration etc can read through the entire thread. Brilliant stories. Captivating read. 

Part 1 of this post can be read here.
Part 2 of this post can be read here
The actual tests

NMAT on 21st October (Bhopal): 
What went right: Preparation, Timing of the test
What went wrong: Slackening towards the end of the Quant/DI section. 
Expectations: 260+
Actual Score: 233
Calls: NMIMS
NMAT was more of a cakewalk with many sitters and it was more of a game of picking out the sitters and cracking them quickly. I could sense I had done well, as I was giving the test. 

CAT on 4th November (Bhopal): 
What went right: Preparation, Timing of the test
What went wrong:Hardly anything
Expectations: -
Percentile: 99.27
Calls:IIM A,I,K, Raipur, Rohtak, Trichy, MDI, SP Jain
Everything about CAT went on perfectly. I was pretty comfortable at the centre, I started off with DI and did 18 questions without any hassles; then hit on Verbal and did 14 (found it pretty ambiguous) and then finally went to Quant and attempted 16. Felt it was a fair effort and possibly the best I could have given it. 

IIFT on 28th November (Chennai): 
What went right: Nothing pretty much. Except for the exam.
What went wrong: The choice of centre, asking my mother to drop me there (psyched me out). Hardly did any kind of preparation.
Actual Score:34.78
Calls:Missed out the cut off by about 0.5

FMS on 5th December (Chennai): 
What went right: Had looked at old question papers
What went wrong:Looked at only the questions and not the answers !!!
Actual Score:412
Calls:Missed out the cut off by about 5-7 marks 

XAT on 2nd January (Chennai): 
What went right: Semblance of a preparation
What went wrong: Looked at the paper and went blank!! Spent way too much time on DI.
Expectations: Anything non negative
Percentile: 79.29
Calls: LOL !

IIFT was the first result to come out, which came just a few days before XAT. Had missed the cut-off narrowly which kept rankling me for a long time. Then the 'CAT-leak fiasco' happened and I was online at that time and checked out my score - a 99.27 percentile. Was happy and partly sad as it meant, according to last year's cut-offs, not many calls. Especially no IIM-A or C. At the same time, there was this inherent worry about whether it was the right result or not. Then came FMS, which I was expecting to narrowly make it through. It was a reject. I still remember crying while watching the second half of Band Bajaa Baraat in the theatre.

Then came the CAT results, on January 12th. I was so nervous that I got a high fever on the night of the results and was shivering all through the night. I wasn't able to sleep at all, and woke up my mom at 2 in the morning and made her check the results. She confirmed my 99.27; much to my relief and joy.

The Calls
With my good school academics and well-rounded percentiles in all sections, I was expecting calls from B, L and K. But disaster struck. L was the first IIM to come out with the results, and I remember looking through the PDF in the hope of finding my SR no much to my disappointment. 
Then came the biggest shock. And surprise. The A call. I was on the way back from Career Launcher when one of my friends called up to say that I had a call from Ahmedabad. It was truly unbelievable at that time, and I just refused to trust the poor guy. I came back and entered my details and found out about my call. 

The other IIMs that came out with their results didn't bother giving me a call. I was pretty nervous about having A as my only call as I was bad with interviews. But the respite was provided by Ratnabha Sir of CL, to whom I'll remain eternally thankful, who said, "If only A decides to give you a call, dont worry; we'll work and convert A"

Then came the flood of calls, from IIM-I, IIM-K, SP Jain, MDI and finally NMIMS. The new IIMs - Rohtak, Raipur and Trichy also decided to give me a call. GD-PI preparation started off in earnest with the usual ET (Thanks to Pritish Roy); introspection and stuff. 


I've already spoken about my interviews in length. 
SP Jain was a straight reject in Group Interview-1. Still dont understand why they call freshers if they aren't interested in them.
I didn't attend NMIMS because it was clashing with my IIM Indore interview. 

That exalted feeling

All in all, the end was the best I could have ever imagined of. I never even thought I'd manage a call from Ahmedabad, but I have a convert in my hands now. 
As they all say, this probably is just the beginning of the journey. I can never say enough thanks to everyone who helped me through this process, with all kinds of support.


prateek said...

Congrats dude. And you write good, simple language and you communicate the idea well. ATB for your future and do take care of your health, a little exercise never killed anyone:)

Suyash said...

its been a journey da, n its been a motivating one... well written,, got back a lot for giving my cat in due course of time.. really happy for u,, looks like u deserved it..and dont worry IIT coaching screwed many in 11th and 12th..:P:P...congrats buddy.

raju said...

buddy, hopefully u remember me from the IIM-RRT interview.
Congos dude for making it 2 Vastrapur:)