The Manipal 29 – Things to Survive Life at MIT Manipal!

An inexperienced life is not worth living.

Socrates

It feels as though for the first 18 years of our life, we have trained for this very moment. Since you’ve opened this article – it’s safe to assume you have made up your mind to come to Manipal (at least for now). You might read countless articles on how to be the perfect friend, the quintessential lover or the responsible adult. But every single facet of growing up spirals around learning. Right now, if you look back to your 16-year-old self – you would laugh at at your choices. Don’t swell on it though, you’ll thank yourself later.

If you are the kind of person who grew up watching American Pie – well face it: college is not going to be as adventurous. Before you know it, you’ll be drained from hours of classes, then make the mandatory one hour call to home because you’re finding your ground at a new place and rush out to have meals on time while the Rain God makes you fully appreciate its presence in all glory. Welcome to Manipal.

We agree one learns better through experience, however, we compiled a few life hacks tailored especially for the life you are about to begin here because,

  • We feel like overtly responsible adults who don’t want you to make the same mistakes that we did,
  • It would save us a whole lot of trouble if you found those answers to your questions through this article in spite of knowing that
  • You’re going to still end up making most of these mistakes because who cares, it’s Manipal!

  1. Keep your friends close, and umbrellas closer.

    Unless you’re ferociously protective of your umbrella, you’ll end up losing them in your first week itself. The key to protecting your umbrella is- never keep it on the racks provided by the Food Court. You might lose a cash full of wallet, and you will get it back, but you will never get back your lost (read: stolen) umbrella. Also a common saying that exists, ” You might forget your phone when you leave your room, but never forget your umbrella”. A piece of advice that’s been passed on for generations because however clear the sky may seem the odd semester boasts of having a weather as unpredictable as a girl on her periods- ’nuff said.

  2. Travel smart.

    Don’t be one of those clueless freshers who take the auto to Udupi during their first weekend, end up spending 200 bucks on the auto fare, while the trip costs a mere 10 bucks by bus. We’ve written multiple articles on the auto wallahs of Manipal, click here for more info! Also, with most of the necessities of life within a kilometer from your college, learn to put one feet in front of the other and walk. It’s healthier too!!

  3. Master the art of texting

    Unless you want a trip to the civil department/ dean’s office / faculty office and make a long and arduous apology in order to retrieve your confiscated phone, learn the art of ninja-texting in class, and hide your phones in your pockets during checks, instead of tucking them under the desk. Or better yet, don’t use it in the lecture halls for the first two weeks.

  4. Do not mindlessly enthusiastically buy books at the start of the semester.

    Most of your notes will be in the form of PDFs and PPTs. Understand which books you absolutely can’t do without, and spend accordingly. Some departments even give out detailed handouts in question & answer form!

  5. One notebook to rule them all

  6. Mitians – Don’t bother to take notes in EVS, BME or English.

    P Venugopal Rao is Bible for EVS; just make sure you manage to get a hold of a copy from the library before sessionals.

  7. Try not to be the noob who gets lost on his first day.

    Yeah, we have all been there, done that. Remember, the Engineering Graphics labs are in AB1, second floor. PSUC lab is in Innovation Centre. Chemistry lab is in AB1, basement, while Physics lab is in AB2, basement. The Workshops are located right beside Girls Block 1/2 at the end of a downward slope.

  8. The Bicycle – To buy or not to buy?

    While using a bicycle doesn’t make too much sense for those living in 16th, 17th and 18th given the steep slope to negotiate, owning one can be very beneficial for the girls living in 11th or 12th. It makes travelling around cheap, and easy.

  9. Learn Kannada, Learn Assamese, Learn Humility!

    If you want to strike a friendly chord with the shopkeepers and the general populace in order to avail a little discount now and then, learn Kannada. If you want favors from the guards and let you sneak in past curfew time, learn Assamese. If you want favors from the professors, sit on the first bench and pretend to be a nerd learn Kannada again. Always works during the Labs at least.

  10. Insist on getting the change back from shops

    The Campus Stores and the tuck shops near NLH hand over candy like there is no tomorrow! Instead of getting more candies than you can ever have, ask for change with a firm voice. At the end of the semester you’d have saved a couple of hundred bucks in one’s, two’s and five’s.

  11. The Auto drivers are predators! They can smell your fear.

    The fares depend on their whims, so if you’re in a rush early in the morning, be ready to belch out more than usual. So set off slightly early in the morning.

  12. Anna or Akka

    No ‘bhaiya’ and ‘didi’ business here. Anna and akka respectively, to refer to shopkeepers or service providers. That, coupled with a “please” and “thank you” goes a long way. You’d be surprised to know, they only respond to Anna or Akka.

    Caution – NEVER to be used in Iceland Juice Shop… Or rather. ‘Don’t Call Anna’ Juice Shop!

  13. Be on neutral terms with professors

    Do not talk back because it doesn’t help, and makes them more hostile towards you. Pro tip: they mark your assignments, labs and mostly your end semester papers/sessional papers. A good rapport with officials, including your caretakers, and wardens will always help.

  14. Switch to Sindhi/Rajasthani mess if you really miss decent North Indian food.

  15. A kettle/induction cooker, with a stash of noodles will be lifesaver during exams.

    Will also save you money.

  16. Don’t sign up for everything

    Join clubs, and be active but make sure you don’t join too many in all the excitement, else you’ll be torn between several clubs at once and it might mess up with the time set apart for studies.

  17. Time Yourself

    Memorize the time you require to traverse from your room to FC, and FC to NLH. This comes in handy when you have a morning class and still want to catch a few more Zzz’s.

  18. Sleep

    Before you know it, you’ll be craving for sleep because you are exhausted with the hectic schedule college has laid out for you. With no mother to remind you to go to bed, or kick you out of it in the morning, it becomes difficult to maintain the daily routine without getting sleep deprived. Long story short: get enough sleep whenever you can.

  19. Attendance

    While you must have already heard about the strict attendance regime in college- 75% which allows you to comfortably bunk 9 classes for a 3 credit subject and 12 classes for a 4 credit one, never exhaust all the available bunks. Don’t miss the class unless absolutely necessary or you’re feeling particularly lazy because class notes help you only when you sit for serious study on the last day. Besides, it’s always safe to keep a few bunks handy for the last few lecture hours when the portion is over and you’re one of the only 10 people visiting class because you have a shortage of attendance. Also, try never to cross the 75% line unless you can vouch for it with a KMC certificate because it means you are re-registering for that subject.

  20. Save on Uniform!

    Get a pair of plain brown trousers from home and save a few hundred bucks on the workshop uniform, by opting to get only the shirt tailored. Doesn’t apply to Mechanical folks.

  21. Computers and Accessories!

    Invest in a good set of speakers, as the laptops that you’ll receive, though well built for rough handling, lacks good speakers.

  22. Om Xerox is the Universal Life Saver.

    Om Xerox is where you’ll find every single subjects’ notes. From previous years’ question papers to common assignments it’s a one stop shop for everything. However, getting photocopies from Om Xerox is usually an ordeal, and infinitely more so during admission and counselling season. One can check any of the photocopy shops behind AB5 to save time in such situations. Also, It is said that the syllabus is decided here!

  23. Learn the colloquial names of places and the abbreviations.

    KC can be any of Kamath Canteen, Kamath Café or Kamath Circle (though more often than not, it is the last one atleast when it stood in all its glory.). Unfortunately, all newcomers will miss the fun of KC. Temple Run is the name given to the route connecting the 16th, 17th and 18th blocks to the Food Court. FOA is nothing but AB2. TC is Tiger Circle. You’ll figure out what SP is in due course.

  24. Know the lesser known lanes around the campus to move faster.

    For example, the AB5 back gate and the lane behind it that leads to the gate. Also, if you’re stranded at the 18th Block back gate beyond 9 pm – and the guards won’t let you in – you can take a few more steps and find the shady route amidst the bushes that leads you to Temple Run.

  25. Fitness

    The college provides a swimming pool and a gym at Marena both being extremely cost effective. Besides there are teams for all major sports. Try to get yourself involved in some sort of activity because you’ll be needing them soon with all the skipping mess food and eating at KFC/Dominoes/McDonalds and also since they release endorphins that keep you happy.

  26. End Point

    If you are low during the semester, take an early morning walk to End Point alone. Or the road from 18th Block Back gate to the place up in the hill, from where you can get a 270 degree view of Manipal.

  27. Everyone is not drinking or doing drugs

    Don’t feel the pressure to try out things you’re not ready for yet and never bend under peer pressure. Despite the number of Van Wilder series you’ve watched, wait for the right time to break the rules, and know when to call it a night. With great power freedom, comes great responsibility.

  28. Try not to get into a relationship right away

    Despite how appalling that may sound, it’s true. You might brush past him in the lab and think it’s love at first sight, but it’s one of Satan’s many cruel games to teach you the dating lessons. Indulging in these lessons might not be all that bad in the long run but try avoid the pain if you can. On the up side, some of those first week relationships might just end up strong. However, chances are bleak.

  29. Don’t believe that it’s going to be easy to get A’s

    Yes, we have all been that topper in school. Yes we have all managed that golden 90+ percentage in boards. In spite of the common myths about Manipal, the students here are at par with excellence. Competition is tough, and unless you pay attention in class or are super smart, getting that 9 GPA is going to be a long shot. The first semester is going to be a reality check for almost everyone in terms of results. Bottom line: academics in college is way tougher than it was in school.

They say college is where you truly find out who you are. It’s one of those rare four years of your life when you have the liberty to do what you want with no parents to watch your back. Let down your guard once in a while and make the memories count. While you’re at it, these hacks will definitely help you avoid those small bumps or at the very least make you realize- we are all in this together. For what it’s worth- at the end of four years all you’ll remember is the day you forgot your umbrella, dealt with your first heartbreak, got a measly D in a subject and realize it was worth missing an 8 ‘o clock class because you had stayed up chatting with your roommate till 3 AM. Enjoy while that lasts.

About Vishaal Bhat 375 Articles
Student,Teacher, Father, Pharmacologist, Chess enthusiast, Blogger and Right-of-center political views