I Want A Scholarship!!!

This is one of the statements made by many students other than "I want to study overseas!". I did say so myself too.haha. Nevertheless, it is of paramount importance that any student with this dream in mind to make an informed decision before taking a scholarship and especially, studying overseas. Now, I am here to share about some stuff relating to this matter or in other words, some things a student should consider before signing that agreement for a scholarship or studying overseas.

     First off, a sponsor (one that gives scholarships) like JPA or Khazanah, wants their scholars (students) to achieve their goals of high CGPA's, excellent co-curricular participation and astounding commitment towards this and that. Are you sure you want and are prepared to face the pressure? Well, actually, the pressure have been around for quite a while with you (if you do have parents that want the best out of you and schools that place a high limit for standard achievement) but this one's different. Why? Because you are always monitored. You are subject to cancellation of the scholarship (which might be shameful for some) if you do not meet the minimum requirements. You will be competing with the top students from various places. You will be expected to excel all the time. You will face a lot of pressure! Which is why there are some people who actually regret taking a scholarship and some even cancel theirs after a while. The bad part about cancelling (or getting canceled from) a scholarship is that you usually have to repay them all the expenses made for your studies plus a sum of money as a punishment or somewhat. You not only waste your waste your money too.

     Oh my, that was quite negative. I think I should be going to the positives! The best part about getting a scholarship is that you get financial assistance which kicks financial problems out of the way. However, you will still face problems if you actually spend your whole-month's allowance in one day. Besides that, being a sponsored student lets you have a chance to meet and mix with a lot of other smart, creative and crazy (yes, some are) people. And some are really smart that they can inspire you. Being a scholarship holder gives you the privilege to have great people to help and encourage you along the way as they too face the same pressure and difficulty. Apart from that, some scholarships provide you with a future job, though some like to better call it a 'bind' and look negatively at it. It really depends on how you take it.

     What about going overseas? Now here's a different story altogether. Studying overseas means that you actually have to go far away from home, far away from the comfort you usually have, far away from the ease of assistance from old friends and family members and far away from the place that you have been used to all this time. It's very different from going on a two weeks holiday. You have to learn to adapt fast. For instance, you have to find or cook food for yourself, and if you're a muslim going to a non-muslim country, it might be a bit more difficult. to find halal food (but it's not THAT hard nowadays). You also have to take care of your house or apartment, your clothes, your money, and much more, all on your own. It teaches you independence, yes. But can you juggle the daily chores with your demanding studies there? It's not much about showing your expertise or your maturity. If you really think you're not comfortable living fully on your own, why chose it? You have to remember that your studies and commitments are important matters that might affect how you will be in the next few years and you don't want them being jeopardized by other problems.

     Nevertheless, going overseas is a great experience whereby you have a new setting and new friends to get along with. There are a lot of things you can learn from other people in places you've never been to, especially in top universities. In addition, top universities overseas have a lot to offer. These top universities are usually old (which means they're very experienced in generating professionals) and are highly funded by their countries. For example, top universities for computer science will usually have high-tech facilities to enable more research and learning to be done. They also have high accreditation (which you should try check first). It's more of getting the most out of the best. You get to put yourself to the test and see how far you can really go.

     Another point I would like you to consider is that the effort you might have to put in to go to universities such as UK and USA is quite enervating as well. For the USA, you'll have to take SATs and TOEFL. Thus, English will be big must and it will especially be a heavy load for those less proficient in the language. The application process might also be a bit troublesome. You'll have to write essays, send transcripts, get recommendation letters and the like. It will be very tiring I assure you. But if you think you can handle the pressure, give it a try!

     All in all, the decision of taking a scholarship and studying overseas is not something you can just make without giving any consideration. It is best that you make an informed decision and plan well to achieve what you want. Weigh the positives and negatives, then see which one makes more sense and importance to you. It's all in your hands.