Toppers shy away from bookworm' tag, express varied interests

HYDERABAD: With 6,163 SSC students securing the perfect score, a GPA of 10 in the results announced on Wednesday, many toppers Deccan Chronicle spoke to distanced themselves from being ‘typical bookworms’ and shared their varied interests, goals and dreams.

One such topper is Srishti Batra, who said she was as surprised as anyone by the result, even as her mother, Jaya Batra, said otherwise. “My daughter has been a smart kid and a topper all her life. So, we were expecting it,” the mother said.

Fifteen-year-old Srishti, however, said she barely studied two hours a day and only got serious with it in the two months leading up to the exams. “Even then, I wasn't always with my books. I often got out, didn't miss out on functions or other events,” she said, adding that she studies with music playing in the background.

Srishti now wants to go on a vacation, but on a serious note, said that she will opt for biology in Intermediate.

“I want to grow up to be a doctor in the Indian Army, working for the brave soldiers,” she said, with the Armed Forces Medical College in Pune and All India Institute of Medical Science in Delhi already in her crosshairs as top college choices.

Among the toppers is Kandukurti Arpana, a singer and a classical dancer, who wants to pursue arts.

“My mother thinks I'll make a good public servant but I'll be better off as an arts student and my family has been very supportive of that. I hope to take mathematics, economics and commerce in the coming months, but all I want to do now is not think about my marks, subjects or future for a month. I want to make the most of this break,” she said.

Her parent Chandramohan K. said: “There's never a better job than doing what you love. My children will always have the freedom to choose their path.”

Bhavandla Vamshi Krishna and his parents were another set to be overjoyed with his 10 GPA. “I absolutely had no idea I wrote my exams that well,” he said, with a laugh.

He said that he has no concrete plans, even as he has always been oriented towards choosing MPC and cracking the JEEs to secure a seat in an IIT. However, before all that, Vamshi Krishna said he plans to play loads of cricket during the break before embarking on the next phase of his academic life.

Dara Jordon Charles, another topper, is athletic and loves basketball but wants to take after his father, Dara Christu Kumar, a cardiologist. He hopes his 9.8 GPA is a good start towards that goal.

“I made a timetable and began working on it meticulously. I began with social studies (the last exam) and worked my way up to my first language,” he said.

He found the history exam the toughest and science, the easiest.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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