Mr. Sivanand Devarakonda, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Amrita School of Engineering, Bengaluru Campus, has been awarded a scholarship to pursue the master’s programme at the KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden. The scholarship came after he bagged the first prize at the KTH Master’s Challenge 2018. 

The KTH Master’s Challenge is a nationwide competition organized by the KTH Royal Institute of Technology. The competition has multiple rounds to test various skills and knowledge of students. Mr. Sivanand will start his Master's program at KTH in August this year. The program deals with design and testing of turbomachinery and study of aeromechanics of turbo machinery. 

As part of the challenge Sivanand Devarakonda went through a number of quizzes, essays, and interviews. The competition consisted of examining knowledge of basic concepts in Mechanical Engineering and aptitude quizzes. For the engineering quizzes, the basics should be strong in the subjects related to the program. Mr. Sivanand applied to the KTH University, for the course specified in the master’s challenge to be eligible for the competition. 

The first round of the competition was online and included three quizzes and two essays. The first quiz was based on aptitude and logical reasoning, the second quiz was based on basic engineering concepts and the third was on Sweden and its contribution to the world. After the quizzes, two essays were submitted. One essay was a case study, in which a topic relevant to the program was given. The second essay was to describe the student’s motivation in applying for the program. 

Once selected for the second round, a Skype interview was required. Only five people were selected for the skype interview. After selection for the skype interview, the candidates were invited to an award ceremony. At the ceremony, three out of five were selected as finalists and only one of them would be awarded the scholarship. The main challenge, according to Mr. Sivanand, was writing the essay which would comprehensively express facts, concepts, evidence and personal opinions. 

The prize distribution ceremony took place at Chancery Pavilion, Richmond Circle, Bangalore, on January 25, 2018, and the first prize included full tuition fee, of around Rs.23 Lakhs, waiver for the first year of study at KTH and waiver of the application fee. 

His advice to future prospects who wish to apply for the scholarship was, "Apart from good grades, I would like to advice to work on several internships and projects, with the aim of doing things more practically. Sweden strongly believes in developing technology for a sustainable future and KTH aims to achieve that goal. So, I would advise to take up projects which can add value to their goal". 

"Chancellor Amma has been a constant inspiration throughout my Engineering studies. Her ideology of attaining education, not just for livelihood, but for life, is something that I’ve always followed. Her teachings helped me keep my focus on the important things in my life. Several experiences of participating in volunteering work have truly given me a sense of tranquility and the will to help out others, which has only been possible because of her guidance. I would like to thank my parents who have always been a constant support to me at every stage of my life and all my professors who have guided me and taught me everything I needed to be an engineer. Special mention to Dr. Nagaraja S. R., Chairperson, Department of Mechanical Engineering, School of Engineering, Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, Bengaluru, for inspiring me to take up the program through his classes and support. And to all my friends for sharing my hardships and helping me out when I needed it. I would not have been able to achieve what I did without any of them," shared Mr. Sivanand.
 

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