Delhi based dental surgeon, Apala Mishra not only cleared the exam with an excellent rank but also scored the highest marks i.e. 215 in the personality test stage. While we mostly see engineers at the top of the list in the UPSC Civil Services result, achieving rank 9 with a dental surgery degree is an achievement in itself. Interestingly, Mishra wasn’t able to qualify for the preliminary stage of the exam in her first two attempts.
“I was not well-prepared in my initial two attempts and therefore, could not clear prelims. However, I was committed to working harder this time. I believe that if one works hard and is dedicated, anything is possible to achieve,” the topper quoted. Mishra used to study for 7 to 8 hours every day and used to monitor the time she spent on each topic. “During my preparation, I also referred to the basic books. Apart from this, I also used online study materials available on Google and YouTube to understand the topics which were not present in the basic books,” she explained.
In a family of army personnel, Apala is the first to enter administrative services. Her father is a retired Colonel from the Army and her mother is a professor at Delhi University. Her brother is serving with the Indian Army on the rank of Major. “My background served as a source of inspiration for me. I took a careful look at our country’s healthcare system and realised it requires more attention. This thought inspired me to pursue a career in the civil service in order to make a greater impact in society,” she said.