How This Man Who Scored 39% In Boards Made It To IIT And A Top Engineering Role In Sweden

Rajiv Dantodiya's journey from a modest upbringing in Rajasthan to becoming a Senior Analytics Reliability Engineer at Tetra Pak in Sweden is a story that’ll serve as an inspiration for every IITian.

Despite securing only 39% in his class 12 exams and facing numerous educational hurdles, Rajiv’s self-belief and determination propelled him to crack the rigorous IIT entrance exam and excel in a challenging field.

What to know: Rajiv grew up in a middle-class family, with a father who ran a small factory and a mother who was a homemaker. His early education in the small towns of Samod and Dholpur did not hint at a bright future. Rajiv recalls in an interview with The Better India, "My school days revolved around mugging up lessons just to pass exams. We would even sell our books at the end of the year to buy cricket balls."

See also: How This Tamil Nadu Statistician Quit His Job At ISRO To Start A Cab Service That Rakes In ₹2 Cr Annually

Turning the Tide: His academic breakthrough came unexpectedly when his brother encouraged him to apply for the IIT entrance exam. Unprepared and struggling with English, Rajiv began studying with the aid of a Hindi-to-English dictionary and soon became engrossed in the learning process. His perseverance paid off when he cleared the IIT screening in 2000, proving his intellectual mettle.

Life at IIT was not smooth sailing. Rajiv faced setbacks such as being rejected for an internship due to his low pre-IIT grades. Nonetheless, he chose to pursue a unique path, opting for a PhD instead of typical placements, which led him to his current role in Sweden.

Rajiv's story is a testament to the power of focus and dedication. His advice to aspiring students is simple yet profound: “Chart your own course, make your own mistakes, and learn from them.”

Read next: This Odisha-Born Man Launched A Platform When He Was 19 That’s Filling A $530 Bn Gap For India’s Small Businesses

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