Welcome to our series highlighting Microsoft Learn Student Ambassadors who achieved the Gold milestone and have recently graduated from their university. Each blog features a different student and highlight their accomplishments, their experience with the Student Ambassadors program, and what they’re up to now.
Today we’d like to introduce Tarun Nanduri, who graduated a few months ago from Pragati Engineering College in Surampalem, India.
Responses have been edited for clarity and length.
Q: When you joined the program, did you have specific goals you wanted to reach, and did you achieve them? How has the program helped to prepare you for the next chapter in your life?
One thing is confidence. The amount of positivity or confidence that this program brings into the academic culture is very high--it's unimaginable, I would say. I was always a confident guy, but then Microsoft Learn Student Ambassadors gave me a platform to talk with more and more people and build that foundation higher.
When I joined the program back in August 2017, the thing which excited me to join was to travel around India and also around the globe. To my fortune, I've traveled in my first year itself and also in my last year before graduating to Student Ambassador gatherings like the Gold Summit and the India Summit where I got to meet great program managers, and it was a whole lot of networking and a whole lot of idea sharing.
The other thing which excited me is Microsoft Azure. In 2017 I was not even aware of what the cloud is, how cloud development works,, but Microsoft Azure gave us a brilliant start. Giving students a USD100 credit allowed us to explore more and more on the cloud, deploy apps, and scale them out. It helped me know how cloud works and everything. Microsoft Azure is one of my favorite cloud platforms--it is the best thing I have learned from this community. Because of this program, I would say did I learn more about cloud computing and Azure.
Yes, it was a beautiful experience from 2017 to 2020.
Q: In the program, what was the one accomplishment that you’re the proudest of and why?
My very first event that I worked on as a Student Ambassador that I weill forever cherish was an interactive event, an hour of code in our college. 11 Student Ambassadors connected and made hour of code possible for more than 700 plus students at one time.
I've done multiple events, but one of my favorite events which I'm proud of is an Application Development workshop series. It's a week or more with 80+ students each and every day coming in and out. Everything from A to Z, from organization to giving the certificates, it's on me,including the talks. That was my greatest experience--sharing my knowledge and empowering juniors to learn more about Microsoft technologies and also technology as a whole.And letting them build their own on their own, letting their ideas materialize.
Q: So what have you been doing or what are you working on? What have you been up to since graduation?
I'm working as a software engineer at NCR Corporation. It's been a good journey so far, and I hope I reach more and more heights. I believe in learning wherever we go. Go wherever, but never stop learning, that's it.I'm enjoying my job at this moment, but my dream job would be to be like a CEO, like Sundar Pichai or Satya Nadella.
Q: If you could redo things, is there anything you would have done differently while in the program?
Not the whole term, but 2018 to 2019. I was quite passive then, so I didn't do many events or didn't participate or be active in the community. So I would like to redo that because the contributions I've made before and after gave me an opportunity to become a Gold Ambassador, so if I were the same way in 2018 and 2019, I would have reached many more heights.
Q: If you were to describe the Student Ambassadors program to a student who is considering joining, what would you say to them?
I would like to showcase myself as a real example of how the program transformed me from a college student who just passed +2 (editor's note: the 2 year bridge between 10 years of primary/secondary schooling and undergraduate college) and became a graduate or a technology graduate. The amount of positivity that this brings into one's academic career is unimaginable, so if you would like to make an impact, this is the right place for you.
Q: What advice would you give to new Student Ambassadors?
Talk with folks. Don't be a single person doing all the things. Get some regional Student Ambassadors around you. Talk with them and do some community events together. Even though you're knowledgeable, doing community events gives you fun and also gives you great experiences.That network matters a lot. You will enjoy the benefits once you graduate from the university.
Q: Do you have a motto, a guiding principle that drives you in life?
There are multiple things I believe in:
Never stop learning.
Sharing is learning, so learn as you share and share as you learn.
The more you know, the more you realize you don't know. That played a good role in my development as a software engineer.