IITAGH and ASIE Advise University of Houston Graduate Students

iitagh 1in

Pratish Kanani, President IITAGH, addressing the students

HOUSTON: It took a bit of time, but after a while the students started asking all of their questions.  What should I say when the interviewers asks me, “Where do you expect to be five years from now?”  What else can I be doing to get more interviews?   How do I approach the question, “Do you need sponsorship?”

The University of Houston Graduate Indian Student Organization (GISO) partnered with the IIT Alumni of Greater Houston (IITAGH) and The American Society of Indian Engineers and Architects (ASIE) to host a Career Mixer event on Thursday, April 9th.

The session was moderated by Pratish Kanani, President of IITAGH, who shared what his company looks for in college hires.  Ratan Bhagat, who recently started a second career at the University of Houston after spending 33 years at FedEx, talked about how to best leverage networks.  Shiladitya Basu with Granherne/KBR discussed how he transformed his background in Aerospace engineering into working with Offshore & Subsea structures.  Surajit Dasgupta talked about how he found his job at KBR through a connection with a friend.  Anand Chauhan talked about how to be passionate and let that show through in the interview. Puneet Agarwal discussed what it takes to submit a strong application to post graduate programs and how to build on a diverse set of skills.  Aaggrim Sabharwal discussed being in their shoes and how to keep their morale high and stay focused.

iitagh 3in

Puneet Agarwal, VP IITAGH, and Ratan Bhagat

Raj Basavaraju, President of ASIE emphasized the importance of understanding social cues.  Hari Jaswal, also with ASIE, talked about the persistence it takes to find a job and shared a personal situation.
“We have all been where these students are, and we are looking for ways to help them, boost their confidence, and give them the right pointers to be successful,” said Pratish Kanani at the end of the evening.  Raj Basavaraju shared, “It is important that students take a longer view when approaching jobs, especially at the entry level.  They really need to understand that fit is more important rather than salary. It is also crucial to be confident and not undersell. Finally, they should never underestimate the value of an internship especially in this age of reference hiring.”

According to Neha Jhinge, Vice President Public Relations for GISO, “the students will definitely use a lot of the tips given by all the industry professionals.”  One of the students shared, “It cleared a lot of the dilemmas that we are going through during this time.”

iitagh 2in

Raj Basavaraju, President ASIE, shares his perspective

Thanking all the IITAGH and ASIE professionals who made it to the career mixer event to guide the UH GISO students, Dr. Phaneendra Kondapi, KBR Adjunct Professor of Subsea Engineering and faculty advisor to GISO, said “Coming from a different educational and cultural background from India and entering into a new professional life here in the US, there are many parameters to consider while choosing a right career path and job prospect. Expert advice from experience professionals will enhance their career opportunities and certainly this career mixer is an excellent platform to get one. I am sure students have benefitted from this and took away some strategies and tips like preparing a job oriented resume, acquiring soft skills, etc.” IIT Alumni of Greater Houston (IITAGH) is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.  We help our members connect, develop, and give back to the local community.  For more information, please visit www.iitagh.org

American Society of Indian Engineers (ASIE) is a Houston, Texas based non-profit organization, tax exempt under IRS Rule 501(c)(3). ASIE was established in 1994 with specific objectives for engineers, architects, and engineering technicians of Indian origin.