Dr. Nutan, a simple girl belonging to a middle class family from a small town goes on to serve Covid patients at Sion Hospital, Mumbai and secures All India Rank 1 in NEET Super Speciality Entrance Exam at the same time. This woman is dynamic and extremely inspiring with having a very wonderful story behind her success. Let us know more about her and let’s spread this true example of woman empowerment to celebrate the International Women’s Day 2021.
The School Life
Nutan belongs to a middle class Maharashtrian family. She went to Yogeshwari Girls’ High School Ambajogai. If I tell you she was a bright student, it may not actually reveal the aura of academic success she had in school, so here’s a brief information about it. In 7th standard, she secured scholarship in the State Level Scholarship Exam. In her 8th, she ranked 19th all across the state in Maharashtra Talent Search Examination (MTSE) and in 9th, she ranked 16th in MTSE. In 10th, she ranked 3rd all across the state in History Talent Search and secured scholarship in National Talent Search Examination (NTSE). In 10th, she got 92.92% in the boards and secured 1st rank in the town. Seems like ranking was a sports to her.
Her extra curriculum achievements are nonetheless any short of her academic successes. As she liked to make poems, she attended many state level poetry contests and won various prizes. She has also mentioned that she has participated in many district level contests, competitions and programs and has won bunch of prizes. All in all, she was not just a textbook addict topper or “nerd”. She was a rockstar in her school.
Well that may still not be very unconventional but how many of the 15 year old school going kids would ever imagine to send Rakhi to the President of India Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam? Yes, Nutan sent a Rakhi by parcel to the President Kalam and the President himself sent an answering letter with a gift.
We can firmly say she was destined to be a doctor and serve patients when, at the age of 14, she sold hand made garlands along with her friends and sent that money for the rescue and treatment of 2004 Andaman Tsunami victims. Not everyone can think like this and even if they think, not everyone can act so gracefully. Nutan was such a lovely school girl.
Nutan’s Way to MBBS
She chose science stream after her 10th and decided to be a doctor.
She got admission in Rajarshi Shahu College, Latur, for her 11th and 12th Science. She put hard efforts in the preparations of MHTCET (The Medical Entrance Exam) and secured 64th rank all across the state. Her way to MBBS was now clear.
She got admission in Lokmanya Tilak Municipal Medical College, Sion, Mumbai.
From ‘Nutan’ to “Doctor Nutan Joshi”
As she got admission in a renowned institute in Mumbai, the small town young girl had her first setback when she faced hardships to get along with the metropolitan environment and felt under-confident in front of the English speaking, confident urban classmates. She failed her first unit test. She also got typhoid. She started to have self doubts. She doubted her own abilities.
Every setback is meant to propel you for greater successes. She converted these negative thoughts into challenges and kept studying thoroughly. She started working on her English. She wrote down every problem she had and drafted a solution for each of them. She executed the plans she made. She wrote down difficult topics. She practiced answers as per the exam pattern. Four months later when another unit test happened, she topped it. The professor acclaimed her performance. Throughout her MBBS, her rank never fell below 5! This is pure dynamism. The rate at which she made a massive comeback after her setback was in fact meant to push her career in a long trajectory.
She has a distinction in ENT, Pediatrics, Pathology and Microbiology.
So what else did the school rockstar do in her MBBS apart from studying and ranking? As mentioned earlier, she is a poet and very much a fond of involving in the cultural activities. She was the head of Marathi section of the college magzine “Rhapsody” in 3rd year of MBBS. She also got prizes for her Poetry all this while.
Nutan’s Perseverance and MD (General Medicine)
After her internship, she appeared for the NEET-PG (National Eligibility cum Entrance Test for Post Graduation) exam for her MD (Doctor of Medicine). She was getting every other branch but medicine. Many of her peers and friends suggested to opt for any other branch. Nutan would never settle for anything less. She always felt that Medicine branch is holistic. She had the insight that she should learn more of it. She considers herself fortunate have the support of her loved ones. She decided to repeat the NEET for MD, which was about to be appeared in the next six months. She said those six months were a great time. She had multiple ups and downs but she remained calm in all those events. She appeared in the NEET exam. Do you still need to guess if she ranked this exam? Of course she did. She secured 12th rank state-wide and 369th nation-wide. She got the stream of her choice, Medicine, that too in the same college in which she pursued her MBBS.
At this moment when I was hearing her, I noticed something really special. She said that she enjoyed her 3 years of MD. That one sentence of her had me clarify my definition of passion and that’s where I’m trying to draw your attention as well. One of the very basic reasons of Nutan’s consistent successes is that she enjoys her profession. It gives her joy to treat the patients and learn new things. She likes to have all kinds of experiences in her profession.
Experiences with Patients
She cited a few memories while generally talking about various types of patients and their relatives. She said she has seen such patients with very poor economic background yet their relatives would arrange the money for their treatment. On the other hand she has seen some patients having sound financial conditions yet they would be lonely. No relatives would meet them.
Many a times during her MD, she used to work for more than 16-18 hours in the hospital. The patients would care for her. They used to ask if she had any food and many a times patients’ relatives would even offer the food.
One of the patients she treated had a business of footwear. He gifted her a pair of sandals out of gratitude. While Dr. Nutan said she did nothing but controlled his blood sugar, but the patient must have felt very secure and full of life with her treatment I can assure.
She recalled an incident from her MBBS 1st Year when a patient turned out to be from her hometown, Ambajogai. He had a poor background and thus was living in Dharavi slum of Mumbai. When his treatment was over and he was fit again, his family members asked Dr. Nutan to visit their home and have their gesture. After all being a lady, Nutan felt a little insecure to visit his home. She asked her mother about this and her mom said to go with a friend. Nutan thought about it and went alone. She mentioned that the man was living with his family in a congested house. They arranged all the gesture they could. They served her lunch of Puran Poli (The Maharashtrian sweet dish prepared on festivals and special occasions.) Nutan was overwhelmed by this experience.
There’s a clear differentiation between a doctor and any other professional. While other professionals will serve you with their skills, charge you and you simply leave them, you just can’t get away in case of a doctor. You feel gratitude towards the doctor. Nutan surely has achieved a lot of academic success but this love she got from the patients and their relatives, no other measurement will be efficient to define her success. Remember the schoolgirl who sent money for Tsunami victims by selling garlands? Kindness is a virtue, and is only achieved by embracing it. Dr. Nutan herself has mentioned a quote in the conversation and I quote, “You can’t always be the smartest or the most perfect person in the room, but you can always be kind!” Nutan is kind hearted and she treats her patients that way. Thus the positive vibes get the appreciation. It may not be very difficult to be as kind and simple as Dr. Nutan is, but if we could only try, there will be a lot of positivity around us for sure.
The Saga of NEET Super Speciality (Clinical Haematology) All India Rank 1
The word “saga” is a perfect depiction of the journey she went through to achieve the greatest success of her life. Let’s know about it in detail.
The Decision Making Process
Near the end of her 1st year of MD Medicine, she was about to be placed in the very famous Hinduja Hospital of Mumbai for Nephrology. She had one more reason not to go for DM ( Doctor of Medical or DM Super Speciality) that her favourite stream, Medicine, would lose, at least for a while.
In all this while, she was at the age when most Indian women get married and have at least one child. Though her parents were not forcing anything but it was her individual dilemma to get married or not.
She thought about it. When she was in her MBBS, she was keen to know more about Haematology. Let me brief you about it. Haematology is related to study and treatment of blood & blood related disorders. There is a doctor in Sion hospital named Dr. Mamata Mangalani who was the senior of Dr. Nutan. Dr. Mamata had opened a Thalassemia centre for children. Dr. Nutan was inspired by Dr. Mangalani’s work in the field of paediatrics and blood cancers. Thus she wanted to learn more about blood diseases. Haematology was indeed her interest from the very beginning we can say.
Apart from her own interest, Haematologists are very rare in the society. She considered this while deciding about furthering her career in the said field.
She specifically referred to a book called Ikigai when describing her decision making for choosing Haematology. She got a perception for decision making in that book, that you should do any work only after making sure four things as under:
- Do you really like it?
- Are you getting enough money for it?
- Are you contributing to the society?
- Are you satisfied with the work?
Dr. Nutan followed this. From her own experiences, she knew that she’d never settle for anything less. She thought, that just like the marriage, her career will be with her lifelong. She chose her career and started preparing for NEET Super Speciality Haematology Entrance Exam.
The Corona Pandemic, Her Tireless Duty, Studies and the Giant Reward of Efforts
An invisible virus held the world at one breath amidst all this in 2020. Mumbai got the highest number of cases and the Sion Hospital where she was working, was amongst the peak number of Covid cases per day. She had the duty for more than 20 hours for many days. She did it. Amongst all the Corona warriors, Dr. Nutan was in the frontline. This is in itself very inspiring and not only Dr. Nutan, but all the doctors who served Covid patients deserve a grand salute. The pandemic affected her exam preparations quite obviously. She got only one month study leaves for her preparations and kept studying as much as she could. She appeared for the exam. And the day came, September 25th, 2020. The results for NEET Super Speciality were announced and Dr. Nutan Damodharrao Joshi secured All India Rank 1 with astonishing 343/400 marks in Clinical Haematology! Take a look at the news reports below.
The journey she went through had many odds in its way, she mentioned her only distraction was marriage. She had a dilemma about getting married or continuing with career. She made quite a brave choice. She fought against all the odds bravely and she served Covid patients in the frontline quite bravely. This bravery surely makes her a Warrior, a Warrior in White!
Nutan is currently pursuing DM Super Speciality in Clinical Haematology at Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamil Nadu.
Family’s Support, Mentors and Friends
While analysing Dr. Nutan’s story as a case study, I felt one thing to be very much distinctive being an Indian. Usually in India, people mistake letting their daughters allow education till graduation for progressiveness. Eventually all the ladies get marriages imposed on them by their parents. Even if there are best of the progressive parents, they’ll heavily persuade their daughters to get married after a certain age. Well, to an extent it is still appropriate to get married in a proper age, it must be the girl’s own decision and not an imposed one. Nutan’s family seems to be very progressive in this case. Dr. Nutan is very much rooted to her parents, she loves them dearly. The parents did not impose her to get married, though they tried to convince but did not force, that’s why she kept learning this long and could achieve heights of successes. This co-ordination between Nutan and her parents is commendable. This is more than enough to explain the degree of moral support she has got from her parents.
As mentioned above, she got her first major setback in the early days of her MBBS 1st year and she got typhoid. Her mom had come to Mumbai that time and caressed her quite very well. That gave her the ability to bounce back and sustain the success. This is one of the many examples of how her mom supported her in all the odds.
When she appeared for NEET-PG and couldn’t get Medicine branch, many of her friends, seniors and relatives kept on advising her to opt for any other stream. Imagine the dilemma she had faced at that time. It was her younger brother Vaibhav and her parents who stood by her and strongly supported her decision to repeat the NEET PG Entrance Exam and she got the courage.
She says she’s keen to her mom. She understands that despite being talented, her mom couldn’t do much in career. She tells she’s living her mom’s dream while getting all these successes. She learns simplicity from her father. From the very childhood, she said, her father has been motivating her for every competitive exam.
Her elder sister Dharini, whom she calls “Didi”, younger brother Vaibhav and her mentor Kiran Kodarkar whom she terms as “Kiran Dada” are the biggest support system of her life, she said. Didi is her strongest emotional support, and Vaibhav is her younger brother who is more like an elder brother and a best friend to her. Vaibhav has always encouraged her to think and act out of comfort zone while standing still with her in any decision. It is because of Vaibhav and Didi she said, she could decide to go further in her career. Her mentor Kiran has always encouraged her to dream big. He has always motivated her in all the ups and downs, and he believed that she would definitely get All India Rank 1 some day.
Apart from these people, Nutan mentioned some of her friends to be very supportive which includes Prachi, Sheetal, Nilima, Sonia and a teacher called Neeraj Sir.
Dr. Nutan’s take on Health, Spirituality and Meditation
Dr. Nutan told that she’s curious about Spirituality and always tries to explore it. She follows Sadhguru, Swami Mukundananda, and B K Shivani. She told that spirituality is very comprehensive and consists of many activities when we preach it. One of the core factors for achieving spiritual goals is good health, both physical and mental. For physical health, she does exercise everyday for 20-30 minutes. For mental health, she practices meditation for 15 minutes everyday. She always tries to stay positive in any situation. She likes to hear some good music for relaxation.
Apart from this, Dr. Nutan likes reading. She referred to an app called Booklet in which there are summaries of some good books and autobiographies. She was in fact very motivated by reading some autobiographies of great people. She wondered how they remained focused and calm in all the odds.
Her room is full of good thoughts and positive wall posters. She mentioned that whatever goal you want to achieve, it should be right before your eyes as you get up. She had written “Rank 1” at her library table while preparing for NEET Super Speciality. No wonder this woman has achieved many milestones. She lives whatever she determines. As of now, she has written in her room a list of daily practices she wants to preach, including use of a staircase for 4 floors, reading one article everyday, and doing Yoga for at least 30 minutes everyday. She’s preaching on it.
Success Tips from Dr. Nutan
She has specifically mentioned that there were no social media to get distracted neither did she watch the television as such during her school days. Her studies were very consistent and focused. She said she never had any problem whilst living in Ambajogai and Latur till her 12th. As mentioned above when she got her first setback in MBBS 1st year, she wrote down every problem she faced, she planned the solutions in detail and she executed each one of those plans quite gracefully. That’s what she said, whatever the problem is, write it down and look for the solutions, plan, execute and achieve the goals. Some more succes tips she gave and I quote, “Your career is in your hands. You must give your maximum involvement for the cause you’re doing it. Never multitask, never keep dilemma, put your 100% of calibre to achieve your goals. Keep yourself calm and down-to-earth. There is nothing bad in having big dreams. Whatever goal you want to achieve, you must be good with mental and physical health. Never take them for granted.”
Especially for the women out there, she has a message:
“Whatever the problem is, write it down. Look for the solutions. Plan your actions and be very specific about it. For example, if you want to lower your social media usage, be specific that you’ll use it only once a week. Not only in career but also in personal life, not only for the working women but also for the house wives, being strong, staying mentally and physically fit and solving the issues with proper plans is the key to success.”
Dr. Nutan has an overwhelming and wonderful journey of her success. Her consistent efforts, simplicity, kindness and compassion have always kept her graph increasing. As a woman, she’s an ideal not only for the medical students but also for everyone out there. Let’s share this true, very genuine example of Women Empowerment. We wish our best for her further journey in Clinical Haematology and we believe Dr. Nutan will be a very renowned Super Specialist soon. Patients will feel relaxed and comfortable when Hematologist Dr. Nutan Joshi will treat them!
Written with Warm Regards by
Dnyanesh Make “The DPM”
There’s a very wonderful Marathi Facebook post published by our friend Anand Kulkarni about Dr. Nutan’s success. Check that out here.