Varun Sudhakar (18) is currently in his first year of his Bachelor in Advanced Technology, and is also at this point in time doing Math Honors Track, marketing at Hardstart, secretary general of University of Twente Model United Nations (UT MUN), chairman of Global Lounge Committee, tutor at Pre-U, candidate commissioner of External Affairs at H.V. Ockham, member of the educational committee of S.V.A.T. Astatine, Open Day team, as well as attempting to create a start-up company with a classmate.
Why are you involved in so many things?
‘I love to partake in extracurricular activities ranging in different backgrounds to expose myself and gain invaluable experience in each and every possible hemisphere. I want to have a well-rounded experience which would thereby teach me to handle a multitude of difficult situations. Even though academics is the most important thing, the soft skills and other values that I learn by doing extracurricular activities will surely help me in the future.’
What does your typical day look like?
‘In a word: meetings. I usually go to classes at around 9:15 (I’m always late to class), after which I have lunch meetings everyday throughout the week. Once class period ends at 17:30, I usually have a few meetings and then attend my Math Honours class. Then I’ll have some more meetings until around 22:30. Finally I have some time to rest, and I sit together with my housemates, eat dinner, and talk about our day or just laugh and share stories. This 1-2 hours of my day is the best part since I de-stress and forget about everything else but relaxing. Then at around 12:00 it all starts again. I begin to study and try to cover all the lecture material for the day or any I’ve missed, then from 3:00 till around 4:30, I work on my extracurricular commitments. By the time it is 4:30 I am quite exhausted, so I just watch a TV show before falling asleep at around 5:00 or 5:30. Next day the routine begins all over again.’
'The experience and insight you can and will gain is invaluable for the future.'
Do you still have time for other leisurely activities?
‘I always have time for laid-back activities such as taking occasional walks with my housemates, or playing FIFA for a few hours on a daily basis. I also play badminton and football regularly. Partying every weekend with friends is always a must.’
How do you find time to get it all done? What’s your secret?
‘I always like to work late at night since I find it the most peaceful time. This might not be the best habit, but I have done this since I lived in Mumbai, which is noisy throughout the day but is extremely quiet during the night. Over multiple years of practice and habit, I have been conditioned to work for long hours without breaks. This increases my productivity and I finish my work during this time. Usually, early in the night, I complete my academic duties such as finishing homework and completing project assignments. Later into the night, when I am a bit less fresh, I focus on extracurricular commitments.’
Do you think others could follow such a demanding schedule, or do you just have superpowers?
‘I think anyone can do as many things and still function perfectly with such a hectic schedule. It just depends on how much you want to do and how much you want to experience during your time at University. It just takes a lot of patience and clear organization if you want to do a lot of things beside your study. Plus, humour always helps. Yes, free time will only be during the weekends or on other holidays or late in the night, but the experience and insight you can and will gain is invaluable for the future.’