When I was in high school, some of my older friends left the country to study overseas upon graduation. One of them who left was a really good friend my brother. In that time, it was hard to have new friends because friends go to high school coming from middle school, as packages. By this I mean making friends starts with elementary school, goes to middle school, but by high school students like to stay with the same group of friends rather than making new friends. So, I faced a hard time to throw myself into a new group of friends even though I am a very social person.
I began hating the idea of studying outside the country, so I made my decision to not study overseas. I was not a grown kid, so I was not the one who made this decision, it was my emotions that took over my mind. After graduation from high school, I had about two to three weeks to make my final decision, to study abroad? Or at home? I decided to have discussion with my older brother who has a master degree in business and my older sister who is a math teacher in middle school. This was the turning point in my life. It was a very helpful meeting and they persuade me to study abroad.
The secret of changing my mind was combination of my sister and brother meeting and the long private conversation that I had with myself. Basically, I changed my mind after I looked for the advantages and disadvantages. I found most of the disadvantages were based on my feelings and emotions. Google helped me too; I went through international students comments about their experience living in a new culture where people have different habits and hobbies. Almost all the comments were positive. Also, I tried to see myself in the future after deciding whether to go or stay.
Then, I liked to see myself coming back home holding my certificate in my right hand full of pride, and all my family members, relatives and friends are waiting for me in the airport. Then, When they see me, they lift and throw me up in the sky. Also, I figured out that most of companies priority is looking to hire someone can speak both Arabic, “the country main language”, and English, “the world business language. ” The only way to learn how to speak and write English well is studying in native English country. So, these two points helped me to choose the idea of studying abroad.
After that, I looked back for the scholarship requests that have been sent to me. Here where filtering started. I received many scholarship requests where some of them were from private companies and others from different parts of the government. So, the first filtering process was preferring the governmental scholarships. Second, I filtered it again listing the best salary offers. At this point, I got only two options. The last filtering process was about who will give me the green light to study in the United States of America and in Michigan State University specifically.
It was because most of the scholarships back home do not give students the option of choosing where to study; scholarships owners choose the university for students. After that, one of these two governmental scholarships matched my requirements; it is called Abu Dhabi Investment Authority “ADIA. ” Abu Dhabi is the capital of United Arab Emirates. One of ADIA representatives asked me during my interview “why the U. S not England? And why MSU exactly? ” I mentioned that one of my good friends went to study overseas, who is my brother.
What country and university he went to study in? Actually, he is studying in MSU. This was my first answer for ADIA interviewer question. The second point that gives me the power to choose MSU over many good universities is MSU has a huge beautiful safe campus. I searched in Google about MSU student life in campus. Then, I saw what really attracted me, for example, Red Cedar River that cuts the campus to two equal pieces, and the museum that has no 90-degree angle in its shape. At the end of my interview, my response was convincing enough to get them to sign my profile.
The signature means “free to go to America. ” Here where my day was made. Then, I went back home and surprised my family by telling them that I am going to study with my brother. At this time, I saw my mother’s tears for the first time in my whole life. After that, it was the time to get ready to travel by packing my stuff and preparing myself psychologically. In conclusion, I didn’t expect that getting a scholarship that first, covers my tuition and plane tickets; and second, gives me monthly salary, will include sad moments.
The side effect or sad moment from getting the scholarship was the goodbye moments. I am an emotional person, which means I could not hold my tears from sliding through my face when I was leaving home. I hugged my family members more than three times. I just could not believe that I was leaving them for a long time for the first time. However, studying abroad is very helpful. You will feel embarrassed when you could not speak the new culture language. You will not find the people who will laugh with you and steads up the whole night playing X-box or PlayStation.
You will miss every second at home. You will have to take your cloths to a laundry by yourself, wash it, and dry it. You will burn your clothes by using smoothing iron for the first time. And, and, and etc. You don’t know what else experiencing a new culture hides for you. All of these will make from a regular person, a successful powerful person that’s going to be unstoppable in front of life’s obstacles. My own advice for the coming generations is to never ignore or refuse the chance of studying abroad. Go for it, live it, get it, then come back home.