IIT Guwahati Convocation Speech by Founder
Rahul Mehta, serial entrepreneur and the chief executive and founder of the Bhupat and Jyoti Mehta Family Foundation, was the Guest of Honor at the Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati’s 24th Convocation.
To the applause of the student audience he arrived at the podium wearing a backpack. As he noted later, lifelong learning is one of the three keys to success. Even today he remarked, “I am putting on my backpack and walking to my classes at Stanford.”
Mehta shared with the recent graduates of IIT Guwahati his life journey into entrepreneurship and his transition from his work in the technological field to his worldwide philanthropic activities. He spoke about his journey at the young age of 17 from Mumbai to the United States and his social and economic struggles in creating his startup. Through these hardships and doubts from his peers he persevered and continued to do what he loved. “I felt like I was succeeding beyond my wildest dreams. I was running a thriving company with 80 employees, offices worldwide, and a global customer base,” Mehta stated, even though he was making significantly less than the rest of his peers.
Throughout his speech, he informed the graduates to pursue what makes them happy regardless of what the pay was. He advised, “you must choose your own path to fulfilling your duty and maximizing your own potential.” Mehta firmly believes that societal pressures should not dictate what success looks like to a person. Similarly, he informs them that becoming a more well-rounded person and a life-long learner will allow one to be the best they can be.
Mehta then goes on to reassure the graduates that no matter what happens down the line that they will overcome any challenge or hardship that comes their way. With having lived through the COVID-19 pandemic, many of these students have lost family members and loved ones, and even with this they still managed to succeed in their studies. In doing so Mr. Mehta comforts the students by encouraging them to keep pushing to be the best they can be regardless of any obstacles that stand in their way.
He finalizes his speech by encouraging the graduates to step outside of their comfort zones and take their time in developing themselves as a whole person rather than rushing into things based of what others think they should do. He states that “if you manage to do those things as you follow your chosen career, you stand a good chance of having a bright and prosperous future. And don’t forget to have some fun along the way”.