STUDYING ABROAD; MY JOURNEY TO PAKISTAN PART 1
I remember one evening my father come to me asking me whether I wanted to study abroad, without hesitation I roared. YES! ..YES!. My father then said,” I can find you a scholarship in Pakistan offered by the government to outstanding students like you.’’ I thought my father was joking with me at that moment but after seeing no signals of joke from his nonverbal cues I realized he was serious about the matter. I asked him,” why Pakistan, when there are hundreds of other countries I could study from with better universities and peaceful enough.” This time he started standing taller than his appearance like someone who was practicing for this moment all along; in reality my father is someone who does not approach you with something without doing his homework on his part. He said trust me on this I believe Pakistan is a good place most of it undergraduate have successful life after studying there, majority of my overseas professional friends in the Middle East are from Pakistan and the environment there is much conducive for studies because there are no parties, drugs or indulging with opposite sex. Went to my grandmother who visited us at that time from USA and told her about the news, to my surprise it was the worst words I have ever told granny. She said,” Pakistan is a dangerous place don’t you see what happens there in the news.”
My day just changed from YES! to what the hell am I thinking of, I was caught in a dilemma between what I know and what I heard about Pakistan. So I turned to my computer checking the situation and analyzing it on my own. To my surprise I found two uncomprehending result after I typed” Pakistan students” on Google. The first was beautiful images of students and graduations, the second was reports of dead students aftermath of a bombing attack and many more . Suddenly I came to a conclusion am not going to Pakistan.
After a week or so I traveled with my father in one of his business trip to the capital city, there I met one of my uncles. He asked me what I would like to study, I proudly said “Engineering.” With a smile on his face he said “kudos son” majority of the youth opt to go for humanities, just to run away from the hurdle steps of engineering. My uncle was a civil engineer and one of my role models at that time. So I asked him which university he graduated from, he said UET Taxila. There were no such universities in my country by that name, I said which country. He majestically replied to me “Pakistan my son” I was thrilled with his reply, all this time I never knew my uncle was from Pakistan although we rarely met. Something come to my mind ( my father just had a proposal few weeks back to study there) I asked myself what if it was a set up convincing me to go to Pakistan, letter that day I come to realize my uncle himself arrived at that same moment for an urgent meeting with his business partners. I asked him how was his studies while he was there. He said and I quote “moments of my life I will always be proud of. So I asked maybe during your times it was great, what do you think of studying there now. He said ”Education gets better with time and so is Pakistan my son”, the only words that changed my views about Pakistan till today. Not because of the facts he said but the conviction he said it with; like, he was a fellow patriot of that country far or near it was always near his hurt. I wanted a similar conviction believing in something foreign to my set up. We had one of our longest chats that day, he told me of his days, how the people there were so much hospitable to him, level of education and hardship he had to overcome. Truly inspiring, I was a fun of adventure and Pakistan seemed to be the place I could tell stories as my uncle.
So I approached my father and asked him if the scholarship offer was open, he said, yes. Then I mentioned to him how meeting uncle made me change my stand about studying there. He smiled and said, “I will make some calls and arrange for the interview.”
A month later I received an email from the embassy congratulating me of my admission to one of Pakistan’s prestigious universities. I have taken the news to my friends and family, the reaction was quite shocking every single person I told about the news was condoning me of such a terrible move, then I remembered one of those reassuring words my uncle told me” The media creates public perception about anything they like or not.” I trusted him and my father so no words could overcome my ambitions of studying there, even my mother silently disapproved but she was always the driving force, telling me to follow my dreams.
Youth Times wish him best of luck.