We are KMC MTTN. We are Manipal. The following narrative is simply an honest account of what it is to be us. What it is to do what we do. Some of it is cheesy.
26th July 2015,12:00 am
We had a meeting today. Anxious deliberations were made as to our agenda for the future. As usual, my notebook was out and I was scribbling the various article ideas people around me were suggesting. I may have landed up with a very big assignment- we simply called it the MTTN experience. More on that later.
12th August 2015
I think it will be a good idea if I asked everybody to share something on what they think is best about being in MTTN. It is after all, a team.
8th September 2015
It took nearly a month but I’ve got something now. The only question that remains is where to start?
It has been two years since I left home to chase my dreams of becoming a doctor. As I look out of the window and see the rain swept street outside my hostel I think of what I have achieved. I think of the friends I’ve made, the sights I have seen and woven into these recollections I think of MTTN. I remember the day I went to the recruitment a year ago. I had never seen the website before and I had no idea what I would be required to do. I recognized some of my seniors and also felt reassured to see the faces of my classmates in the small group of people who addressed us. I was selected and we had our first meeting, one of many. Here’s what a fellow recruit had to say about that-
“As soon as I got the message that I’ve been shortlisted in the recruitments, I almost called it quits. Why? Because my days were getting crushed to the ground by the wheel of time and I was broke when it came to interest in any activities.”
My feelings were similar. All we ever do is to find something, some place where we really fit. Who knows if this was what we wanted. However, this is what happened next-
“Ever encouraging one’s talents and hell bent on professionalism, MTTN took me from my lowliest days, to days that were unlimited fun. MTTN is family, truly making Manipal a home away from home.”
The first assignment we worked on was Vibes 2014, organized by KMC Literary Committee. We would cover events, coordinate with our editors and photographers, painstakingly assemble write-ups about every event that took place, regardless how uninteresting we ourselves found it. That was a great lesson for me personally. Anyone can write about things they find interesting. Only a handful can do more than just that.
A small part of me did wonder where this was all going. Who was reading the things we wrote? What were we really getting out of it?
“There are so many amazing memories I have of MTTN actually. But then I think the most significant one that I have is when I wrote the Kanan and Biswa review. [Kanan Gill and Biswa Kalyan Rath had come to KMC. Tickets were house-full. We were the media body in charge of covering the event.] Athyunnath told me that someone from Brazil had read my article. He had located the user from the IP address I think. And that was such a proud moment for me. I was still a novice back then, KMC MTTN was barely a thing at that time. This was the moment I realised the power of social media and how cool it was to be part of one.”
-Sohini Ray, Editor-in-Chief
In the coming months we were present at several major KMC events-Freshers 2014, ABCD 2014, Verve 2015. We had several meetings and continuous and often nonsensical texting sessions on Whatsapp, irrespective of where we were and what we were doing. We had grown from a small group of six to a much larger number of eighteen. Seniors reminisce about that time-
“I feel proud to have been part of the team that has raised MTTN from a small, unheard of speck in the dust to what it is today. Back when I was first recruited, nobody had heard of us – we ran around doing a thankless job, writing articles that no one read. The team of 2014 has been a breath of fresh air. All the countless meetings, dinners and photoshoots have knit us together, thread by thread. MTTN has taught me so much – how to photoshop, how to handle people and what it means to have a dedicated team to guide. When my time comes to leave, I’m going to be very sorry indeed.”
-Kaavya Murali, Deputy Editor-in-Chief
“At the threshold of my second year, the MTTN family warmly welcomed me. I watched as this nuclear unit grew to a close-knit party of eighteen. As head of PR, I’ve had to meet all kinds of people, all blended into a motley of a journey of two years.”
-Aditi Dixit, Head of PR
We worked on blog articles on the side too. It was my job (self-appointed I must add) to maintain a list of new ideas at every meeting or the ideas people shared in texts. In the span of a year we wrote about experiences in medical school- autopsies, clinics, tips on MU-OET, counselling, places to visit….. We had our first major writing contest, Papyrus. We even shared a small part of what we are learning in Manipal Health Digest.
All that jazz is enough to make many heads turn but there is more. We are not just a gang of misfits hell-bent on global domination; we don’t just answer questions like ‘The Nation Wants To Know’. We are dreamers who believe in impossible things and for us the small university town of Manipal is filled with ideas and possibilities no one has ever thought of. We are the witnesses and the players. We stand both in the sidelines and in the cross-hairs. Being in MTTN is about hard work and long hours, also about finding the heart to laugh, despite all that. Being in MTTN is also, in a big way, about friendship and family (both regular and dysfunctional)
“During one of our MTTN dinners, Jaya and I were having the most sarcastic of conversations. One sly remark followed the other, and another…it just went on and on. The others present seemed to really enjoy the show. I need to mention here that just one week prior to that, I had fallen off a bike, was severely bruised and could not even walk without whining in pain. However, at the end of the dinner, Jaya being Jaya (i.e one of the most kind hearted souls around) came to my rescue. She yelled at me for being careless, helped me walk out of the restaurant and caught an auto to drop me safely back to my hostel (so much for chivalry)”
-Rohit Jain, Co-Head of Writing
In situations like these we go on and on so far that we forget that it is important to reach some point of resolution. Turns all you had to do was ask the voice of experience. Here is what one of our founding members, mentor to the people who run KMC MTTN today had to say-
“MTTN takes you in and makes you sing “we are family”. At first, it was a chance to be a part of something different. However, it evolved into something more over the years. It was the cliched roller coaster of a media team: brainstorming, inside jokes, deadlines, uncontrollable dinners, new friends and just plain fun. I wouldn’t trade this experience for anything else.”
-Anamika Neralla, Managing Editor
In closing perhaps I should say that we love it, that we cannot stop loving it. (I did say some of it was cheesy) But lets’ have none of that. I can, however say with complete conviction and confidence that what you see and learn here you will not anywhere else. It is a nice place to be and a really good thing to be doing.