JEE Advanced 2018 Topper Interview Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji (AIR 37) - Concentration and Confidence are my success mantras
Prabha Dhavala, 19 Jun 2018, #JEE Advanced
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JEE Advanced 2018 Topper Interview Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji - Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji is a happy student having done his parents and teachers proud with an All India rank of 37 in JEE Advanced 2018. Sumanth Balaji who is interested in studying at IIT Bombay feels that engineering is a means for him to build a good career in his interest area which is Computer Science. Originally from Gudiwada in Andhra Pradesh, Sumanth Balaji secured an AIR of 26 in JEE Main, while his AP EAMCET rank is 15 and TS EAMCET rank 29. According to him concentration and confidence are two traits that are required during preparation and on the exam day. To know more about his preparation strategies for the entrance exams, read the JEE Advanced Topper 2018 Interview of Sanapathi Sumanth Balajibelow.

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Careers360: Congratulations for your outstanding performance in JEE Advanced 2018! What was your reaction upon knowing your rank?

Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji: I was very happy that my hard work has paid off. I can pursue my dream of studying Computer Science at IIT Bombay.


Careers360: Tell us something about yourself. Which board have you studied under? Which school have you studied in?

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Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji: Till class 8, I studied in Viswabharati in Gudiwada. Then I shifted to Sri Chaitanya Madhavpur and finally my intermediate from Sri Chaitanya- Narayana Junior College Chaina Batch.


Careers360: What is your score in JEE Advanced 2018? What is your all India rank and category rank? Have you written other entrance exams? Pls give details

Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji: I scored an AIR 37 in JEE Advanced 2018. In the exam  I scored 294 marks and my OBC category rank is 6. I also appeared for TS EAMCET 2018 where my rank is 29, AP EAMCET 2018 where my rank is 15 and JEE Main 2018 where I scored an All India rank of 26. In JEE Main 2018, my OBC rank is 23.


Careers360: Why do you want to study engineering? When did you decided to study engineering? Which branch would you be interested in? Any reason?

Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji: I have always been interested in computers, Maths and my teachers have told me that engineering would be a good career option. I love Maths and computing so this would be a good option. I plan to study and prepare myself from the time I join the course.


Careers360: JEE Advanced went online this year. What is your opinion about it? Did it change your preparation strategy for the exam?

Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji: Actually my coaching centre already set up a lab with computers in place. We practised on those all the time soit was not a problem at all. We mostly worked and practised online so we were fully prepared to tackle the online exam.


Careers360: When did you start your JEE Advanced preparation? Tell us something about your preparation strategy and daily routine for JEE Advanced?

Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji: I started preparing for JEE Advanced preparation as soon as JEE Main was done. Every day we were given a mock test then we revised from short notes which we had been advised to prepare.

About sixteen months were spent in clearing our concepts and strengthening our base. Then on we were into revision, mock tests. After every test, we had the faculty pointing out where we had gone wrong, where we could do better etc. So it was a continuous process.

As for our daily routine, we had classes for around 5 hours followed by self-study for about 6 hours. So around eleven hours per day was spent in JEE preparation.


Careers360: How was the preparation for JEE Advanced different from JEE Main?

Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji: JEE Main was based on just concepts while JEE Advanced was analytical. I just liked JEE Advanced question paper. It was really interesting to solve and such good questions were asked.

JEE Main is more about quantity. If you know the concepts, you could just do well in JEE Main. It is all about time management if you are thorough with your subjects. However JEE Advanced is a different ball game. The questions are tricky and test your knowledge well. So you can’t just perform like you did in JEE Main as the basis for the questions are really different. You have to be very well versed with not just the concepts but also their application.


Careers360: Since there was just a month after the JEE Main, elaborate on your preparation strategy?

Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji: I just followed what the teachers told us to. You see, they had planned the whole month. It was just following what they said and it worked well as they have so much experience on their side which is a big advantage if you use it.


Careers360: Did you take coaching for JEE and if yes from where? What are the benefits of coaching according to you?’

Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji: As I said I studied inSri Chaitanya- Narayana Junior College Chaina Batch which is an integrated course. Coaching is provided therein. Coaching is beneficial I believe as they take care of everything – starting from understanding the concepts, learning to revision. Every aspect is monitored and we are provided with regular feedback for improvement.


Careers360: Mock tests and sample papers – how extensively did you practise with the help of these? Do you think practising from the previous year papers help and how?

Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji: Not every day. We had an exam every week where I performance would be analysed and feedback was given.


Careers360: Are there any special books that you feel have helped with your JEE Advanced preparation?

Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji: They gave us some books which were available at the coaching centre along with work sheets which was sufficient for the exam. Apart from that the coaching material, our short notes were more than enough.


Careers360: Did you face any problem during the JEE Advanced examination?  Which subject was the easiest and which was the toughest in JEE Advanced? What do you think is a tough thing to manage during the JEE Advanced exam?

Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji: No, the exam was well conducted and I faced no problems at all. As for the subjects, I felt Physics was easy while Chemistry was moderate. So was Maths. Questions in JEE Advanced require a lot of thought and we have to be careful while answering. The questions are tricky so choosing the answer is a careful exercise.


Careers360: What is the main difference between both the two papers in JEE Advanced?

Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji: Both the papers were similar. They were moderate in their difficulty levels. Like I said time is a factor and so is the way you interpret questions. The answers have to be worked out so it is important to be careful but again within time.


Careers360: Did you face any technical glitches during the exam? What is your opinion on the way the exam was conducted?

Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji: No, I did not face any glitches. The exam was smooth. I think it was well conducted.


Careers360: What do you think are the key factors behind your stupendous success in JEE Advanced?

Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji: Concentration and Confidence are two factors I believe work for everyone. If you concentrate on your studies, you will be confident. You must carry that forward to excel in the exam. See thesedays coaching and preparation starts from around class 9. So students are prepared by the time they are in class 12. So confidenceshould be there in the exam and you definitely need to concentrate in the exam.


Careers360:  How did you de-stress yourself during the preparation? What are your hobbies? How often could you pursue them?

Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji: Every two weeks, we were given time off for around a day to visit our homes or go for an outing. Apart from that in my spare time, I play chess and I also like watching movies.


Careers360: You know you are an inspiration to thousands of students across the country. Do you have any message for future aspirants on tackling the JEE Advanced exam?

Sanapathi Sumanth Balaji: NCERT books are the base to strengthening your concepts especially for Chemistry. Then make sure your understating of the formulae is good and ample practice is there for excelling in Mathematics while Physics requires having good conceptual knowledge. Apart from that, concentration and confidence are two success mantras for cracking the exam.

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The minimum marks to score is called the cutoff, which differs from caste to caste. Also the cutoff changes every year due to the paper difficulty level, the no. of students appearing for the exam and the counselling, the no of seats available etc. Kindly mention your category so that I can provide you with the details. Or you can also visit the page mentioned below to know the cutoffs of different category during the past years.

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