Tuesday, December 30, 2014

My Ice-Breaker Speech at LatentView "Leader's Voice" Programme

The scene was set in 1988. On August 15th that year, India was celebrating its 41st Independence Day. That afternoon, when the city of Bangalore had finished the jubilation, at 1545hrs, a young mother, in the labour ward of a hospital, gave birth to her first child. A healthy, chubby baby boy.

At 1630hrs, a close relative rushed to the father and said "Gopi, I have the perfect name for your son. To celebrate the day and occasion, you should call him Swathanthr Kumar".
To this very day, I am thankful that my parents chose not to.

Good evening all,  I am Avinash Gopinathan and am here today to share a few memories of my humble, beautiful and adventurous life in timelines that I believe were my milestones.
I was born to middle class parents and have had a happy story growing up. Back then, we lived in a colony of 13 houses where I was the youngest. Pampered with love and care, I learnt some important lessons very early which have influenced my personality in a big way.

Fast forward to the year 2000.
I was in 8th standard, a juncture where I had to decide what I wanted to be. I had three choices.
1) I just finished four years of learning Carnatic Music and had given my first Thyagaraja Aradhana Concert.
2) I had cleared an entrance test for IITJEE foundation course at Visakhapatnam's best institute.
3) I was selected for District under 15 Basketball team summer camp,
My father chose IITJEE - Safe and Secure. "Mera Beta Engineer Banega"

Fast forward to the year 2006.
11th and 12th standard in Andhra Pradesh are a special experience. 7hrs of continuous classes that start at 5:30 am followed by 7hrs of study sessions. Endless tests. Countless problems. My idols at that stage were the HC Vermas, the RS Aggarwals and the Irodoves. My blood pumped physics, my heart beat chemistry and my mind only processed math.
After 2 years of this relentless ordeal, the results were out.
IITJEE Rank 20,000+
AIEEE Rank 20,000+
VIT Rank 20,000+
My teachers were shocked, my parents were speechless. They couldn't believe it and neither could I.
Then, like a ray of hope BITS-Pilani happened.
I was excited and overjoyed. Surprisingly my relatives very not. They were held back and skeptical about the location of my campus. The location that I now call my second home. The location that would change the rest of my life for the rest. Goa.

5 years of college stories, experiences, highs and lows that I cannot summarise in 6 or 60 or even 600 minutes. Goa has been my biggest pilgrimage yet. It turned my 12th standard idols from HC Verma to Metallica, from RS Aggarwal to George Carlin and from Irodov to Johnny Walker.
It was the best preparation that I could have asked for as it gave and taught me everything and beyond.

Fast forward to the year 2012.
6 months after I passed out of college, LatentView happened. I would honestly admit that I didn't choose Analytics, Analytics chose me. LatentView in many ways has been my college after college. The learnings are different but the best part is the personality of the people are the same. This part of my journey is open and continuous. I wish to keep building bigger and better stories here.

Looking back on all these years and moments, I am happy at where I am. I made my fair share of mistakes and have cherished my share of victories. I am optimistic about my road ahead.
From Swathanthr Kumar to Coaching Classes, from Goa Beaches to LatentView Analytics, I wish to continue to add, not moments I breathe but memories that take my breath away. Thank you.