Jeevithkumar, a student of the Government Model Higher Secondary School at Silvarpatti, Periyakulam, in Theni district, is among those who have cleared the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) this year.
In his first attempt last year, he scored only 193 marks. But he did not give up. “As a government school student, I wanted to prove that nothing is impossible,” said the boy who scored 664 marks this year.
His father K. Narayanamoorthy is a cowherd at Vadipatti and his mother is a worker under the MGNREGA. “Jeevith was the first in our family to score high marks in Class 10 and 12. We are very happy with how well he has done and it feels like he has already become a doctor,” said Mr. Narayanamoorthy.
Jeevith’s school played a major role in ensuring that he was able to enrol in year-long coaching classes. “When he expressed interest in wanting to attempt the NEET again, we managed to mobilise funds from teachers and donors. He was always a promising student and one of our toppers,” said A. Mohan, the school headmaster. He had scored 548 out of 600 marks in Class 12 and was the district topper.
While Jeevith spent over 10 months at a coaching centre, the COVID-19 lockdown meant that he had to return home. Mr. Mohan said that to ensure he had a good place to prepare, he was helped with an accommodation by one of his teachers. “I studied for over two months in a room provided by my teacher as the date for the exam got nearer,” Jeevith said. His teacher ensured that he was provided meals and had a space where he could concentrate and study.
“There is nothing that government school students can’t do and this kept me motivated to prepare well. The ten months of coaching also helped me a lot. I feel that what I was taught there and the regular tests aided my preparation,” said Jeevith, who hopes to pursue MBBS at the Madras Medical College.