This led me to reminisce about my days back in college. Our campus was a new one and hence was more like an open slate for us to write upon. We were the second batch and far more explosive than our seniors in terms of raking up controversies, fights and DISCO’s. But this was a phase that I witnessed from 2005-2009 in BPGC as well. All these crackdowns on students in IIT-M becomes national headlines (or atleast regional) whereas we fought our own battles in relative obscurity. Being an established campus has its merits and demerits. Availability of resources is one huge plus but the long list of student traditions sometimes becomes an uphill task to change.
I spent quite sometime in IITM campus as well and the only things that struck me was the freedom they had to roam hostels, their huge labs and their swimming pool (sigh!). Our playground was still swaying between a cricket field and a football field. The badminton court floors were still mosaic (which almost broke my ankle in the second semester) and our shopping complex was mostly barren. Internet was almost non-existent and everything was still sparkly clean or being constructed. Then, we had an incident with a dog and a transformer and boom, our basic electrical supply was non-existent too. We struggled for water and electricity and our demand for decent internet supply was still on-going when I left. Last I recall, we had some sort of shifts to give internet to hostels. Ha!
Now, now I dont need updates on how everything is set, running to perfection and amply supplied to everyone on campus. Our miseries had bonded us like nothing else could. The fun we had standing in lines for the water tanker or the hollering when lights went out in hostels is more memorable than any of the normal days we had. Our mess food was bad, but there was collective joy in criticizing it. No streetlamps paved way for “lovers-lane” or “the boulevard of broken dreams”. When professors decided similar crackdowns on the couples of campus, it was more of sympathy we shared (and of course reams of gossip) for those poor folks caught in the act. DC++ changed the face of student-life. Activity outside rooms was minimal and far more fun. ( I had the best time on DC mainchats!). I made quite a large group of friends too who otherwise would have remained unknown owing to CS and AOE and dota and other things that I was miserable at. Academics was never discussed and no discrimination was ever made based on cgpa. In short, we did not have freedom or the world class amenities, but we were a group of people who lived together in that picturesque, expensive campus and had more fun than many other established ones.
You might ask me what the purpose of this post was.I strongly believe that student interaction or quality of life cannot be hampered by crackdowns or restrictions. If anything, it’ll being them closer as a unified group. Of course the IIT campus is much larger with a much higher enrollment, but I know people are smart enough to find ways to do whatever they want. Ask anyone from BPGC who stayed on campus from 2004-2009. I bet you wont hear a single complaint now!
Disclaimer: This post has no references to a direct comparison of campuses be it Pilani campus or IIT-M. I just am making a point using examples from my experiences.
Also, the smartness of people involved is not being compared at all. I am aware everyone is almost equal in the IQ department. I’m sure everyone’s college life is fun and unique in their own way.
Ps: Damn,I miss campus like crazy now. 😦