Student bloggers: Checking in with Mohit
Today we’ll check in with Mohit, who does us all a favor by looking back on all the positives of the second half of 2020:
I’m here again. But this time, it’s 2021 – a year to begin fresh and strong.
Let me start by congratulating the candidates accepted to Fletcher. I extend a warm welcome into our incredible community and look forward to meeting you – virtually or 6-feet away. And if you are still finishing your applications, good luck!
Though 2020 was odd in some ways (why? See point 1 below), it wasn’t terrible. A lot of wonderful things happened. More than what I had hoped for, and I am grateful for that. This blog is a culmination of my second half of 2020. Like prior times (early days at Fletcher, life beyond the classroom, and first year wrap-up), I reflect and write about my favorite bits of the roller coaster ride at Fletcher. This time, I am experimenting with a list-based post along with song recommendations I am listening to while drafting this piece. Ignore the order!
- I missed in-person meetings and the real ‘Fletcher experience’. Remember my ‘life beyond the classroom’ post? Well, that’s just 5% of the overall Fletcher experience, or even less. As our classes are held online, I missed that experience in its original setting. Then, this fall, some of my friends chose to defer or study from their homes. And I meet professors virtually only. But then, Fletcher has been impressive to digitize most of those experiences. So, kudos to them!
Another miss for me this year – I could not make it to the top 10 finalists for TEDxTufts 2021. I wanted to and still do. So, I will try it next year now. (Song – Indian Summer by Jai Wolf)
Let’s now move on to positive stuff.
- I won the 2020 Tufts Ideas Competition. Along with Nitin (F’20), I won US$ 1,000 for our clean energy venture ‘Resonance Lab’. This adds to our excitement of winning the 2020 Fletcher D-Prize. Though we lost in the finals last year, we have our eye on the 2021 Tufts 100K New Ventures Competition. We hope to be better, inshallah! (Song – Adventure of a lifetime by Coldplay)
- I published op-eds on a variety of topics. Following my passion to write, I published op-eds on impact investing for NextBillion and Alliance, the impact of COVID-19 on migrants for The Fletcher Forum, and climate disasters for Down to Earth. (Song – Oh love by Prateek Kuhad)
- I explored Washington D.C and have fallen in love with it. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the Zoom world, your physical location does not matter. I explored D.C and its incredible greenery and food. I would recommend Ethiopic Restaurant for its sampler, The Roost for its olive and mushroom pizza, and Indigo DC for anything Indian. And more important, I made some amazing friends and met some members of the Fletcher mafia. (Song – Liggi by Ritviz)
- I enjoyed apple picking, pumpkin carving, and snowfall. I won’t lie. My friends made me work (and jump) hard to pick some high-quality Macintosh apples. Until that day, I never heard about an ‘apple fight’. I found my peace when they made delicious apple pie. This time Halloween celebration was not crazy like in 2019. Ask Flercherites about the Raymond Avenue party and what followed (hint – some $$$). Pumpkin carving, mulled wine and Fletcherite company made it special this year too. And if you know me, you know how much I love snowfall. This year’s snow human was almost 6 feet tall and stayed for four days. (Song – Feliz Navidad by Jose Feliciano ft. FaWiJo)
- I have started enjoying cooking. Even I can’t believe it, but yes, it’s true. Thanks to my American and Canadian friends a.k.a. talented chefs, I have moved beyond making ginger tea and cooking frozen stuff. Now, I make pancakes and bake cookies and cake, etc. I think of myself as a responsible sous-chef while experimenting with new dishes with them. Will I become a terrific cook – as good as them or my mother? Probably not. (Song – Moon by Kid Francescoli)
- I interned with Impact Investors Exchange (IIX), Singapore, and volunteered for SOCAP. At IIX, I worked with an incredible team to launch a $28 million award-winning gender bond, likely to support 180,000 underserved women in Asia. I then volunteered at SOCAP 2020 – a global event with participation from the largest impact investing community in the world. (Song – Paper Planes by M.I.A.)
- I settled for a relationship with Zoom. Why? You ask. Because everything is happening through Zoom. Virtual coffee hours with incoming students, New York career trek, Fletcher Social Investment Group (FSIG) events, webinars, Boston impact investing career trek with HBS, HKS and MIT, and networking with alumni. And yes, Zoom fatigue can sometimes be taxing. (Song – Dragonball Durag by Thundercat)
- I completed my penultimate, fall term. This term was quite relaxing. Like me, colleagues who worked with me, know I needed to improve my leadership skills. So, a leadership course was inevitable. I also opted for strategic management, climate and migration, and mergers and acquisitions at Fletcher. I cross-registered at Harvard Kennedy School to take a course on private capital for public purposes. (Song – Holiday by Lil Nas X)
You can see that this list, which is not at all exhaustive, is getting away from me. Anyway, I am genuinely pleased to have been able to fill 2020 with new experiences and memories. And I am thankful to all those who contributed towards these. It takes a village.
In a few days, I am starting my final term. I can feel a bit of nostalgia already. But, all I want to do is to stay energetic and be present in the moment.
I wish you a happy (almost over) holiday season as I enjoy my favorite ginger tea at home and watch the India vs. Australia cricket test match. And I hope you, too, are enjoying your break in preparation for what is going to come next. (Song – Sunblind by Fleet Foxes)
You can connect with me over LinkedIn