CHENNAI: While children in primary school dressed up as mythological or other characters for fancy dress competitions, S Dhivyadharshini always strutted in as a doctor. She is among the first few candidates from a government school in Tamil Nadu who secured an MBBS seat in the first round of medical counselling this year.
The student from Government Higher Secondary School, MMDA Colony, Arumbakkam, scored 620 in her attempt at NEET. From 145 in her first attempt in 2018, she says getting an MBBS seat at Madras Medical College, was a journey of perseverance.
“When I was a child, my mother told me that I should choose a profession that blended with my personality. I have always wanted to help the poor and needy and becoming a doctor was the way I knew I could do it,” she said adding that in the long run, she wants to work only at a government hospital, which provides free treatment.
Dhivyadharshini assures that even without the 7.5 per cent reservation for government school students, she would have easily secured a seat this year. “When I scored 145, I was not devastated. I identified the mistakes and tried not doing the same in 2019 test, where I scored 466,” she said. However, she was four points shy of the cut-off for government colleges and could not afford private college education.
“I realised that I had lost some points to silly shading errors. This was a lesson in patience and learning to be a perfectionist,” she said emphasising that the long wait would have been impossible without the consistent support from her family and school. Her mother is a teacher at a government school and her father is a caterer. “They would have allowed me to wait another year and attempt the exam if I did not make it this time,” she said.