GATE 2019 Topper Interview Nipun Mittal (AIR 3-CSE)-”The test is about time management and accuracy”
Prabakaran K, 26 Mar 2019, #GATE

GATE 2019 Topper Interview- Nipul Mittal who secured AIR 3 in Computer Science paper in GATE 2019 succeeded in his first GATE attempt. Topping in GATE 2019 exam was his dream. Nipun Mittal was no stranger to hard work. He started preparation for GATE one year ago. “I practised a lot and tested my preparation with online mock test series. I used to study 4-5 hours a day but it was never a burden or pressure for me, rather it was more a mind booster for me,” he says. “I always wanted to make my family proud but I didn’t expect that it would come true so soon.” "I feel really great at this moment. To be honest, I usually don't keep high expectations in life and try to go with the flow," Nipul Mittal told Careers360. Let see the exclusive interview with Nipun Mittal, one of the GATE 2019 toppers.

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Careers360: GATE 2019 Topper Interview Tell us something about yourself; Where have you done your engineering from and in which branch?

Nipun Mittal: I am Nipun Mittal. I am a 4th-year CSE undergraduate at Jaypee Institute of Information Technology, Noida.


Careers360: What was the GATE Paper you appeared in? What rank did you get in GATE 2019?

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Nipun Mittal: I have appeared in GATE CSE 2019. This was my first attempt and I secured an All India Rank 3 in the examination.


Careers360: Is this your first attempt or did you attempt GATE earlier?

Nipun Mittal: First attempt


Careers360: What was the reason you appeared for GATE 2019? Please elaborate.

Nipun Mittal: Initially one of my closest friend Nupur Garg motivated me for GATE and eventually I got aligned with it because after successfully completing GATE one can do masters from reputed institutes in India or abroad, one can land a job in different PSUs and one can go in academia also.


Careers360: Have you applied to any PSUs recruiting through GATE? Which ones?

Nipun Mittal: No, I haven’t applied to any PSU. I have only applied to IITB.


Careers360: When did you start your preparation?  How did you prepare for the GATE exam? How many hours did you put in per day as per the stage of preparation?

Nipun Mittal: I have started preparing in February 2018. My pace was slow as I was an active competitive programmer and also done a 2-month summer internship in Hackerrank, Banglore. I generally study 4-5 hrs a day for GATE.


Careers360: Have you taken any coaching? If yes- From where? How did it help?

Nipun Mittal: Yes, I have taken an online course of BrainStorm Achiever, Jai Sarai, Delhi. Since my basic concepts were clear, I just want to take coaching to remain on schedule and be consistent. The coaching helped me in a way expected.


Careers360: Can you share any preparation strategies with our readers? When should one start their preparation for GATE? How to schedule study time and make timetables?

Nipun Mittal: According to me, GATE preparation requires 6 months. I have personally taken 11 months but i.e, because I was not giving my full time to GATE. One should start the preparation in February or March and complete it till November. Then, in December and January do previous year GATE questions, solve test series and revise all the subjects and especially the hard ones.


Careers360: How important do you feel mock tests are and why? Is it true that if one solves the previous year question papers, there is a good chance of cracking the exam successfully?

Nipun Mittal: They are very important for time management, checking accuracy and your knowledge. Yes, previous year papers make one understand the paper pattern and type of questions asked in the exam which makes the student comfortable in the examination itself.


Careers360: Which books did you follow for GATE preparation? Please name some very important must-read books for GATE

Nipun Mittal: I did not follow any book but every subject has a standard book associated which one must read if his/her basic concepts in that subject are not clear.


Careers360: what was the toughest aspect of your GATE preparation?

Nipun Mittal: It depends from person to person, for some people it was the vast syllabus while for others it is the depth and trickiness of the paper. In general, the toughest aspect might be to maintain consistency and dedication throughout the year.


Careers360: Name some important topics that you feel are a must read for any student attempting GATE exam? 

Nipun Mittal: All topics in GATE syllabus are equally important.


Careers360: What did you do for leisure? Any specific activities that helped you unwind?

Nipun Mittal: Competitive coding, TV series like Big Bang Theory, Random YouTube videos and hanging out with friends.


Careers360: How should you schedule answering the GATE exam - which section to attempt first and which next? Did you have any strategy? Kindly share your exam experience with us.

Nipun Mittal: I attempted the whole paper in one go. Just keep track of my time on each question so that I won’t waste any time unnecessarily. Kept 10 minutes for review.


Careers360: What did you feel was a tough thing for you in the GATE exam?

Nipun Mittal: Actually nothing or maybe to maintain my calm.


Careers360: Any advice for the future aspirants?

Nipun Mittal: GATE preparation is not difficult given that your basic concepts are clear. If they are not clear don’t worry you just have to go an extra mile to achieve your target and believe me it’ll be worth it. Sometimes during preparation, I felt like I might not able to complete my syllabus but instead of panicking I speed up my preparation as much as I could and leave rest to the fate because some things are not in your hands and it is best to leave them on their own.

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