Miss Priyanshi Gupta, a mentor, advisor and social entrepreneur was born in Bareilly, UP, where she lived and did her schooling. Later, she went to Vivekananda Institute of Professional Studies (VIPS) to pursue a 5-year BA. LL. B (Hons), an integrated course.
Her strong mentality to bring change by helping and guiding others led her to found “Change via Change”, where she is helping more than 2500+ young law students and professionals by giving them Pro-Bono mentorship about all the issues they face in law school and ahead, helping them find job opportunities and internships by upgrading skills like CVs or resume making, optimizing LinkedIn and Twitter accounts for professional purposes. She assists them with Moot Court Competitions and guides them with research, drafting, and writing skills etc.
Q:-) Could you give a brief introduction about yourself?
Well, I am Priyanshi Gupta, and I was born in Bareilly, Uttar Pradesh and completed my schooling from there. I completed my Higher Secondary Studies at B.B.L Public School Bareilly with Mathematics and Physical Education. It was during the 11th grade that my father recommended writing CLAT and pursuing law. Till then, I had no intention of studying law or even had a serious thought about it. He explained about the job prospects and social responsibilities of becoming a law graduate (PS. He wanted to see me as a Judicial Officer). So, I thought I will give it a shot.
Right now, I finished my fourth semester, and am on my way to fifth in the 5-year BA. LL.B (Hons) from Vivekananda Institute of Professional Studies. In parallel with my scholar life, I am a Pro Bono Mentor, Social Entrepreneur and Mental Health Supporter. During my second semester of Law College, I found myself surrounded by untapped potential opportunities. And I soon realized that my peers, most of the time not even see the opportunities that lay before them let alone use them.
This reflection of my surrounding situation led me to find “Change via Change”. The aim was simple, to make everyone realize the opportunities where they can present themselves and to grab them.
Q:-) How as your journey from writing CLAT to VIPS like?
Like I said before, it was during my 11th standard that my father asked me to write CLAT. Till then, I had no intention of doing so. But once he explained everything, I thought “Yeah, I can do things like this, it suits me”. I think he got a little glamorized version of the powers, social status, and responsibilities of a judicial officer, so like any father, he thought “Yes, this will suit my child.”
However, when I researched a bit about the CLAT syllabus, I was pleasantly surprised and found a liking for it. I thought if law school was like this, then it would be fun. Well, let’s just say I had a crushing realization when I came into law school. It wasn’t bad, but it certainly wasn’t what I expected it to be. Now things have worked out well and I find myself enjoying this part of my life.
But first, I want to clear two things:
The first is that in today’s time, it is easier to understand where your interests lie, what kind of personality you have, and what kind of work you’ll perform once you’re in a particular sector or domain through the internet. So, to all the young students, be it students from college who’re confused about what to do during and after college, or those who are in school and want to decide what to do after Higher Secondary graduation, if you’re confused about what you should do, stop giving excuses.
If you’re using social media for your convenience, then you’re also supposed to get out of your comfort zone and search the web, watch YouTube videos, interviews, and podcasts, read blogs, articles, and books, browse through social media platforms like LinkedIn and Instagram, talk to experienced people around you, or on media platforms to find out where your interests and passion lie.
Don’t rely on random aunts, uncles, relatives, neighbours, or friends who’re either themselves not clear about that particular domain or don’t have any experience with the same.
Secondly, once you’re in college, and you find that your interests either don’t lie there or you want to pursue something else, so, for those whose parents aren’t that supportive of you dropping out and pursuing your so-called passion as a career, you have some ways to rebel, criticize or regret.
To be very practical, the other way is to search for the options left out now in the domain you’ve already entered and understand what might interest you now! Additionally, you can always pursue your passion side by side, plus if you have your backup plans ready, you may make it a full-time career as well, for which you need proper planning and strategy to work hard and get it.
Q:-) How do you feel about being in a non-NLU?
There will always be something missing or incomplete or complaining, be it any college or university. I feel grateful for all the opportunities provided to me in general, and I believe that every student should focus on what they can do from their own end apart the opportunities provided by their college and not criticize the college for what they are not getting from it. It applies to every student, no matter in which domain they are.
I see there are many students who get into college and then realize that this isn’t for them and want to drop out or plan to appear for the CLAT exam again in the first year of college because they feel bad about not getting into XYZ College or let’s just say NLUs, but in my opinion, I feel it’s better to focus on what you can do from your end, to focus on what you are doing now pragmatically in the college you are already in and to work on your skills. If you still want to appear for the exam, you are capable enough to manage college and work simultaneously along with CLAT and college activities, then go for it.
Q:-) Would you advice aspiring law students of what you have learned from your experiences or would you rather they go through the experiences?
My recommendation to every law student is to start enhancing and polishing your skills from the beginning of law school. The best way to do that is by hunting for different types of activities like doing internships, participating in moot court, trial advocacy or other competitions, writing research papers, articles, or blogs on topics of interest, doing courses of your choice, like one on men’s rights, or child labour, or marital rape, or gender-neutral laws, etc., keeping in mind that it is from an authentic source, or try volunteering in different NGOs, taking part in college societies and committees, but just don’t run over internships in the name of campus ambassadors’ programs because they will just ask you to promote their brands, or if you feel you’re not learning anything, just don’t do it.
Primarily, I’ll not stick to only moot courts. For example, Books can’t teach you drafting. Only drafting will teach you how to draft. Therefore, I believe the theory is vitally important, but being a bibliophile or simply theoretically cramming will not work. Practical experience or knowledge is very crucial.
You all should start researching in all possible sectors and then decide what interests you the most after understanding the pros and cons including the scope of each of them in the future. Keeping a notebook to write down what you’re researching and keep revisiting them once a month what you’ve already researched and what your upcoming short and long-term goals are, will really help. And don’t just stick to one thing; try doing whatever you come across and feel like doing because that will help you understand where your interests lie.
Q:-) Everyone experiences hardships on their path to success. What are the hurdles that you have faced and did you learn from them?
One of the major issues that school and college students face is “not being guided properly in the early days only” but I feel this should not be an excuse for not knowing anything because we’re now in the age of the internet. When you know how to use it for your entertainment, then don’t complain when you didn’t use it for the right purpose.
Another thing I learnt is that it is okay if you make mistakes, it’s okay if you take time to understand, it is okay if you’ve arguments with your parents, it is okay if you didn’t perform well, it is okay if you make grammatical mistakes. Your reputation will not degrade, they will not sell your reputation. The only thing that matters is that you learn not to repeat those mistakes and understand what is right or wrong for you at that point in time. Because you never know, for example, 10 years down the line, you might not like your decision but at least back your decisions with some reasoning, practicality and logic at the time of making that decision.
Q:-) How would you describe yourself on a personal level? Do these characters affect your work?
I always feel grateful for getting a chance to do everything, do different things for people as it is a key that makes me avoid all the so-called hurdles and to what I have because there are so many people who are not even blessed with that. Managing and deciding our priorities and then investing time accordingly should be your first aim.
Miss Priyanshi Gupta is an inspiration for every law student because she sets an example of how anything can be achieved with true devotion and hard work. She not only developed herself but also lent a helping hand to anyone who needed it. She has helped us to learn how to gain the confidence and reassurance we need through tough times.