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‘Attempt the question paper wisely’: Student who cracks national science scholarship shares preparation tips

‘Our Physics exam was just a day before my KVPY exam,’ says Vaastavi Kumar from Apeejay School, Saket

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While prepping for her CBSE class 12 board exam this year, Vaastavi Kumar from Apeejay Saket also aced the prestigious Kishore Vaigyanik Protsahan Yojana Exam (KVPY). Meanwhile, she also took the JEE Main session I exam. In an interview, the student tells us how she managed to prepare for the exams simultaneously, her goals for the future, and more. Edited excerpts:

How did you come across the scholarship exam?

I was browsing online to look for an opportunity to test my preparation level for the exam season when I came across KVPY. I researched and realised the scholarship would be helpful in studying at IISC Bangalore or Indian Institute of Science Education and Research (IISER). I have been particularly interested in research which is why I thought of taking the exam. The scholarship provides Rs 5000 per month and in addition to interesting workshops all over India in many of their affiliated institutes.

What field do you want to pursue your research in?

May be Biochemistry like making medicines for pharmaceutical companies or research on diseases.

Which subject would you like to pursue graduation in?

I am hoping to pursue my graduation in either mathematics or biotechnology.

You appeared for KVPY this year amid your board exams. Was it difficult to prepare for KVPY alongside CBSE board exams?

Our Physics exam was just a day before my KVPY exam. But I was prepared for it and made my study timetable accordingly. First, I prepared for KVPY and then focused on the board exam. The syllabus for both was more or less the same so I did not face too much of a problem.

Did you get a chance to meet friends or pursue any hobby? Tell us about your schedule.

I was not able to meet my friends much in the wake of the pandemic. But I spent time with my family members. My schedule was divided carefully so that I could give as much time to my board exam preparation as well as other exams like KVPY and JEE Main.

Students tend to get nervous during exams. How did you overcome it?

I did not put too much burden on myself. At the same time, I already took many mock exams to ensure I could keep myself calm during the main exam.

Are you excited about CBSE term II results?

Yes, I think my term II went better than term I. I look forward to my results.

How have your parents supported you?

They have always motivated me. They told me to remain calm and reassured me that my score would be proportional to my hard work.

Any particular college where you would like to pursue graduation?

I would prefer the top colleges like IITs or NITs.

How are you preparing for JEE Main session II and JEE advanced?

I am doing self-study and keeping myself up to date with the previous-year question papers. I am also enrolled in a coaching centre where the mentors are giving their best to prepare us for the exams.

Disha Roy Choudhury is a Senior Correspondent at Apeejay Newsroom. She has worked as a journalist at different media organisations. She is also passionate about music and has participated in reality shows.

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