Interview with Shamita Sheetal A/P Sathiaselan – ITC AP 2019 1st Runner-up
Written by JA Malaysia Alumnus – Richelle Khor
International Trade Challenge (ITC) Asia Pacific Finals 2019 was celebrated by Malaysians in triumph as Shamita Sheetal A/P Sathiaselan from SMK Convent Green Lane graced the international arena with her stellar performance. Although two years had passed, our victorious 1st Runner-up remains the role model in the hearts of our students, her dazzling legacy impassioning them to strive harder and break more records. Her technological prowess and humanitarian passion resulted in her embedding Artificial Intelligence (AI) into a medical device that detects heart attacks ultimately won the favour of the esteemed panel of judges. To innovate a product based on her belief that the health issue can be better addressed with the amelioration of a preventive medical device reveals her maturity in strategizing a feasible business proposal.
“One of the biggest takeaways from ITC is the opportunity given to me to overcome my stage fright. Now college presentations have become relatively easy to me; I can complete the slides under one hour.” As a fervent public speaker and debater, Shamita’s relentless pursuit of excellence and perfection has disciplined her to honour the stage. Regardless of how one may seem coherent and composed on stage; the public attention, the desire to deliver powerful messages, the need to address a large group of audience- make stage fright inherent in every public speaker. Shamita’s nerve-wracking experience of presenting a product in front of the panel of judges and hundred over attendees instilled confidence in her presentation skills, which places her in an advantageous situation for her pre-university studies under Monash University Foundation Year. Stage fright still accompanies her until today but with international recognition, it is no longer a quandary that enmeshes her.
The competition in ITC is undeniably cut-throat; talented individuals selected from different countries are convened in this international event, each ambitious to engrave unforgettable impressions on the world stage. Winning is only made possible when we champion our potential and Shamita would like to emphasise the importance of mindset to the upcoming Malaysian representatives, “I knew that I wanted to win. I was also prepared to give it my best and do whatever it takes. That was how I arrived at the huge turn- huge opportunities only come when you make your target clear.” The trophy may not be the common goal as there exists a possibility whereby the two partners in the same team harbour different expectations for the competition. Transparency in communication therefore becomes the rudiment that supports the value of the team so that resources can be accurately expounded and each person can be well-focused to achieve the target. The process critically evaluates participants’ patience and grit to boldly confront the communicative barriers in order to harness collective intelligence.
The epitome of calibre is primed to embrace education as a lifelong investment. ITC was one of the highlights in Shamita’s life but it was absolutely not an indication for her to discontinue her journey of self-enhancement. “Every day, new things are emerging in the market. There are a lot of things in business and entrepreneurship that I have yet to know, the knowledge I have currently is only- the tip of the iceberg.” Coming from a purely science background, the preparation of financial plans was one of the challenges she faced in the competition. Portraying sheer openness to knowledge, she expressed an interest to explore and enrich her understanding in fields that concern financial rubric, such as Accounting. The mentality showcased by our alumna is exemplar of the first-class mindset that is well aligned with the philosophy of the Ministry of Education in nurturing our rising stars of tomorrow. The power of transcendence is nourished by the eagerness and hunger for self-enhancement; we envision Shamita to continue charging forward with full velocity.
Despite receiving motivations to pursue a career in business, Shamita has decided to fulfil her dreams to become a doctor. Nevertheless, she acknowledges the impact of ITC on her career direction, in which her attempt to reconcile her passion for medicine and attraction to business has expanded her aspiration to establish a clinic of her own in ten years. ITC transforms her to become someone who dares to dream high. When that time comes, everything she had learnt falls into its practicality; her entrepreneurial flairs will once again be positioned under her assessment and scrutiny. The insights contributed by Shamita shall be preserved as a source of inspirations for all Malaysians and we wish her all the best in her future endeavours.