Meet the MBAEx Class of 2024: Neeraj, Indian Institute of Management Calcutta


IIM Calcutta

School: St. Xavier’s School, Bokaro Steel City

“Sports enthusiast embracing life’s new challenges, eager to ride the waves of opportunity ahead.”

Hometown: Bokaro Steel City, Jharkhand

Fun Fact About Yourself: I have been a sailor for more than 13 years. Yet, I don’t really know how to swim!

Undergraduate School and Major: Marine Engineering & Research Institute, Kolkata (Bachelor’s in Marine Engineering)

Most Recent Employer and Job Title: K Line Ship Management Ltd., Chief Engineer

Aside from your classmates, what was the key part of IIM Calcutta’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? The key aspect of IIM Calcutta’s MBAEx program that led me to choose this business school was its strong emphasis on experiential learning and industry immersion. The program’s practical approach to learning, complemented by real-world projects, internships, and interactions with industry experts, appealed to me greatly. This focus on hands-on experience allows me to bridge the gap between theory and practice, honing my skills and preparing me to tackle real business challenges effectively. This emphasis on practical learning and industry exposure was paramount to me as it aligned perfectly with my career aspirations and goals.

What has been your favorite course or extracurricular activity at IIM Calcutta? What has been the most important lesson that you have learned from it? IIM Kolkata boasts a vibrant sporting culture, where the MBAEx batch excels despite rigorous academic commitments. Thriving within state-of-the-art facilities, I’ve actively engaged in sports, learning the invaluable art of balancing life’s frenetic pace. This experience has taught me to stay grounded amidst our fast-paced world, avoiding losing myself in its relentless madness.

What has been the best part of studying business in Kolkata? Undoubtedly, the highlight of my MBAEx journey has been the privilege of joining an eclectic cohort of 76 batchmates. Embracing diverse experiences and backgrounds, each individual contributes a unique perspective, making our interactions truly enriching. This remarkable opportunity has profoundly shaped my learning and personal growth throughout the program, leaving an indelible mark on my MBA experience.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: While crossing the Indian Ocean, a crew member on my vessel fell overboard in the sea, creating what is called a Man Overboard (MOB) situation. It is essential to locate and track the MOB’s position quickly, or one runs the risk of losing the person. Even the best swimmers succumb to the waves and hypothermia in a few hours. Though protocols existed, no one on board had used them previously. I initiated a series of steps to ensure that the contingency is contained. With three shipmates, I went down in a rescue boat to safely bring back the survivor.

This incident stands as the most significant accomplishment in my career, knowing that my actions played a pivotal role in saving a fellow human being’s life.

Describe your biggest accomplishment as an MBA student so far: Returning to school after a remarkable 15-year hiatus is an accomplishment that fills me with immense pride. Overcoming the initial hurdles and adjusting to the new learning environment have been both exhilarating and rewarding. Each day presents an opportunity to rediscover my passion for learning and expand my knowledge in diverse fields. As I continue to navigate this chapter, I am inspired by the belief that it is never too late to invest in one’s personal growth and embrace the thrill of intellectual advancement.

What is your class’s favorite hangout away from school? Why do you gather there? Our hostel lounge is the ultimate chill-out spot, where you can easily find a partner for a game of table tennis, pool, foosball, or engage in some plain good old gossip. It’s the go-to place for unwinding and enjoying fun-filled moments any time of the night.

What do you hope to do after graduation? My years of experience in the maritime sector have equipped me with valuable skills such as meticulous planning, effective problem-solving, and the ability to thrive under pressure. I believe these attributes will seamlessly transition into the dynamic world of e-commerce, where efficiency and strategic thinking are paramount. I am eager to embark on a new and exciting journey in the e-commerce industry, where I can leverage my diverse skill sets. I would love to apply my expertise and adaptability to a relatively new environment, embracing fresh challenges and opportunities to learn and grow.

What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into IIM Calcutta? Applicants should reflect on their life experiences to identify meaningful stories that authentically capture who they are. The key to success lies in a profound sense of conviction, as taking ownership of one’s narrative significantly amplifies the persuasiveness and depth of the application.


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