“Leaders are not, as we are often led to think, people who go along with huge crowds following them. Leaders are people who go their own way without caring, or even looking to see, whether anyone is following them. Leadership qualities are not the qualities that enable people to attract followers, but those that enable them to do without them. They include, at the very least, courage, endurance, patience, humour, flexibility, resourcefulness, stubbornness, a keen sense of reality, and the ability to keep a cool and clear head, even when things are going badly. True leaders, in short, do not make people into followers, but into other leaders.” – John Holt
We are back with our fourth edition of the ‘In House’ series, where we ask the new leaders about their clubs and their strategies to guide their team. For this edition, we sat with Shreyansh Shrivastava (IE Con), Arpitha Yoga (AAC Con) and Aditya Jain (Web Enthusiasts’ Club Con) and tried to decode their gameplan for the impending semester.
Shreyansh Shrivastava – IE Convenor
– What are your basic expectations from the club and its members now that you are the convenor?
All I expect from my team is the curiosity to learn because that’s all we need to master a new skill or a technology. Also, we all know that this semester will bring a lot of uncertainties. There is a lot of confusion as of now, but with all the adversities, it also brings an opportunity. We see an opportunity to hustle and make the best out of the situation. I expect my team to break trends and think out of the box because change is the only constant in the coming academic year.
– It might be a little early, but is there a rough plan of action ready for IE for the upcoming year?
This is a tough one to answer, to be honest, we have a rough list of things that we want to do, but it’s really difficult to comment on as this whole situation has been unprecedented.
In terms of high-level goals, the primary concern will be to help the members get good placements and internships. It would be followed by building a good platform for the recruits so that they benefit the most in technical terms. We are also looking to encourage members and help them in every way if they are interested in publishing papers. Also, we have some really interesting new Sig ideas from our members, so looking forward to that as well.
– What would be your first set of changes that you want to see in the club or the first steps that you wish to take?
One thing which I would like to emphasise is the collaboration between clubs. There shouldn’t be an environment where clubs of the same genre are fighting for supremacy. It just degrades the techno-atmosphere of the college and never really brings out the best in us. I would like to take new initiatives aimed at bringing clubs closer together.
One more important thing is that the projects done by the club members get a small audience during the expo. If we can scale it up and make it an open event with the help of the college administration, then that would be great (it’s highly unlikely though given the situation we have in hand).
– What are the new events that the members and the other people expect from the club and is it any different from the previous years?
We are focussing more on the members of the club right now, as the whole pandemic has allowed us to organize knowledge exchange programs in a very smooth and easy fashion, the number of internal KEPs has increased exponentially. I feel this is pretty important as sometimes while focussing on external events, the required attention and help are not given to the members. To name a few events, we have Weekly sessions on stock investment, interview preparation and group discussions on recent technology.
Nevertheless, we do have “Samvaad” going on right now where we call industry professionals, and they talk about the latest developments in their field of work. We have a couple of ideas for Code almost ready. We are still brainstorming on how we can organize Gadget or Garage centred events as it’s a little difficult to simulate all the hardware that is needed.
Website – https://ie.nitk.ac.in/
IE Virtual Expo – https://ie.nitk.ac.in/virtual-expo/
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/ienitk/
Linkedin – https://www.linkedin.com/company/ienitk
Instagram – https://instagram.com/ienitk?igshid=kjh01j4rgapa
Arpitha Yoga – Convenor, Amateur Astronomy Club
– Congratulations on the new position. First of all, I would like to know what’s in the pipeline for AAC and what can we expect from the club?
AAC has had a very eventful journey over the years, with our various projects, collaborations and events. AAC has always strived to raise awareness and participation in astronomy amongst the students and the community. We endeavour to continue collaborating with renowned organisations/institutes to enrich our knowledge and gain more experience. Through our outreach programs, we plan to share our knowledge and enthusiasm in astronomy to the younger generations of our community. Moreover, contribute actively to the various Pro-Am (Professional-Amateur) collaboration by following-up on observations based on discoveries made by amateurs.
– What would an ideal Amateur Astronomy Club be like, towards which you would keep striving?
We aim for AAC to be a platform to encourage and inspire space enthusiasts to explore and experiment with different fields and start building their skills, in both technical and non-technical aspects. Also, this is the platform for the members to work as a team, manage challenging tasks, and to learn to take responsibility.
By collaborating with other clubs within and outside NITK, we aspire to bring innovation and to explore Pro-Am projects. We want to create a broad network with like-minded organisations/groups to enrich ourselves and stay updated with the latest technologies.
– How do you feel about your new position as the convenor for AAC?
I am excited about this challenging new journey ahead. But with the support of the members at AAC, we would like to embrace the opportunities that come to us, to bring more value to the club. We, as a team, have to grow and keep learning together. But more importantly, empower our teammates and encourage them to pursue their passions and succeed in their endeavours.
– The pandemic has forced all the clubs to adopt new paths to carry on the activities. So what are the new events that we can expect in the coming semester?
The pandemic has changed the way we function as a club. Although it is quite a challenging period, it has surely helped us learn to adapt to different situations and be more flexible to change.
One of our highest priorities is to ensure that our members learn something during their time at the club and that they take away some form of knowledge, be it technical or non-technical. We have held Knowledge Sharing Sessions (KSS) and Study Groups to discuss and share knowledge, trying to cover a wide variety of topics. We are also taking up and working on more online projects. Moreover, we have been trying to make use of our social media platforms effectively, to educate our members and enthusiasts outside the club on various topics related to astronomy.
In terms of events, we are happy to announce that we will soon be having a live session on Instagram with our fellow space club, “Equinox” from PES University, as a part of their Space Talks series. Here we’ll be discussing a variety of topics ranging from space science to global issues and even science fiction.
We also plan to adapt our traditional Engineer: Astro-Committee events to suit the online platform, which would be beneficial in reaching out to an even larger audience in the space community. Seeing a growing interest in astronomy and physics in our college, we have dedicated an upcoming series to guide our members and astronomy enthusiasts to carve out their career path in this field.
Aditya Jain – Convenor, Web Enthusiasts’ Club
– How has the web club been handling the lockdown situation? What is happening in the club currently, can we get an insight?
Web Club has always been about developing the Computer Science culture in our college. All our efforts till now have been in this direction. For the past few years, we’ve seen a rise in the events we conduct, and the participation in these events has jumped up as well. I think, for the upcoming year, I would plan to keep this up and expand our outreach.
Well, there’s a lot of uncertainty. The semester is mostly virtual, and it’s new to all of us. But I feel it won’t be difficult for us to adapt to the current situation. I plan to explore all kinds of new possibilities in this all-virtual sem and move ahead accordingly. We recently organized a new contest, SliconMaze, in collaboration with IEEE, and we got a fantastic response.
So yeah, this sem, you can expect similar online contests, hackathons, and webinars.
– What do you expect out of your team?
I guess, from the team, I expect all the members to take responsibility, volunteer and come up with new ideas for new projects and tasks. I wish everyone to bond with each other and help people learn and enjoy computer science better.
– How do you feel about your new responsibilities as the convenor for Web Club?
My first and foremost responsibility would be to make sure that all the club members proactively participate in club activities and work together. Every member of the club should feel that they have gained something precious by being a part of the club. Be it in the form of learning new stuff, making new connections, or some other way. The previous core did a great job in this aspect and took the club to new heights. And I think it is not only my job but the whole new core’s responsibility to ensure that all these things happen this year too and we keep progressing together as a unit.