• Ethan Liebross

Meet Archit, a.k.a Future Elon Musk

Three weeks ago, I interviewed my good friend Weisheng. He is an international student from China.

I sincerely enjoyed learning a little more about him and his culture. That’s why for this week, I have decided to explore the life of another friend of mine, Archit Javkhedkar. He is from Pune, which is a city in India.

I stole this from his Facebook. Thanks, Facebook.

I've gotten to know Archit pretty well over the past couple of months. I continue to be impressed by his charisma and wit. We met during the first week of school at orientation. Although we don't have any classes together, we try to grab lunch every once and awhile. From this brief interview, I learned that there is so much more to Archit than most people would think.

Here's a test: Imagine one of your good friends that you have made over the past couple of months. Do you know if they have any siblings, what they would do with 10 million dollars, or what they find most challenging here at Penn State? If anything, you probably know what their major is, their favorite place to get food in Redifer Commons, or how much they hate math. I implore you to ask more difficult questions and see what happens.

Archit is currently studying aerospace engineering. He has always been intrigued by the idea of space, and he wants to contribute by making space travel possible for everyone.

As I said, he comes from Pune. It is a historically rich and vibrant city populated by 3.4 million people and home to many prominent technology companies. It sits on a plateau along the Sahyadri mountain range. Here, he went to an all-boys, public, Jesuit high school, where he tells me a lot of mischief took place.

I wanted to learn a little more about his home than he was giving me, so I asked, “If I came to visit you, where would you take me in your hometown? What would you show me?” He thought on it for a moment and then made his picks. He said he would take me to the old part of the city, which has remains from a time when a king once ruled the area. If we were feeling motivated, he would take me on a morning run in a place known as Arai, which has a small hill where peacocks roam. He said that if I were up for it, he would take me for—what I can only imagine would be a life-changing—ride on his moped.

In case you needed to see a picture of a peacock

I asked him if he had any talents that I’m not aware of. I’m always impressed by people’s abilities. I become even more impressed by one’s humility, which comes when I learn about a secret talent. Let me tell you, Archit has many hidden talents. He can speak four point five languages: English, Hindi, Marathi (father’s native language), Bengali (mom’s native language ), and German (more specifically, 1/2 German). He is also a state-level swimmer. And, if I were the judge, I would say aerospace engineering alone is a talent.

But Archit is human. In his free time, he plays ping pong, binge-watches Netflix, and ventures downtown with friends like any normal person.

If you had ten million dollars what would you do?

Go for a world tour and, if I had any money left, probably buy a supercar.

If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?

Kenya, because I love wildlife and I am a little bit of a wildlife photographer.

In ten years, where would you like to be living and what would you like to be doing?

Hopefully, I’ll be living here in the U.S. working for some space company, maybe SpaceX.

If you had to choose just one word to describe yourself, what word would you choose?

Adventurous. I love going out and meeting new people, doing something that I've never done, and taking on new challenges. If I weren't adventurous, I wouldn't have traveled the 7,908 miles to get here.

As you can probably tell, I learned a lot more about Archit today. I learned about his ambition and his adventurous side. I also learned that I need to go to India and get a ride on his moped.

Archit and I

Originally published: November 1st, 2018

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