We always start as strangers!
We often say, “Don’t talk to strangers.” We grow up fearing strangers. We fear even more when that person is from a different country or a different race, unless we cross borders and see how big the world can be, and how we can connect with each other despite being so different! Being able to study at the University of Findlay with the help of its generous scholarship I am getting that chance. It is enabling me every day to see the beauty of diversity. It is allowing me to stay in a different continent, a different corner of the earth with completely different weather.
I got to do so many amazing things during my first semester here in OilerNation. Now I know how it feels to touch snow, to make a snow angel or to just throw snow balls at your friends.
I never thought that I would play the title role in one of our major productions from last year!
Who would have thought that I would be able to visit a high school to talk with the students about my country and culture?
I never thought I would take a three-day-long bus ride across the continent, alone! But I did, and that trip took me beyond the State of Ohio to Washington for the winter break. This Christmas, I got to see a longtime friend, and made some new friends along the way.
I would have never succeeded in finishing my first American semester without the tremendous support I got from my new teachers. Yes, there were times I felt I was drowning, but then I knew I had to get up on my feet and start walking towards my goal. A part of me realizes I did it because of the gratitude I have for those strangers who gave me a new home, who put their faith in me and helped me in every way they could.
All of these new places and faces have become a part of me by choice. I am utterly grateful for everything I received last year. So, this year I look forward to all the new people and all the new places I’ll be able to be a part of. My dream is that every person would be motivated to move beyond their own borders one day and see the rest of the world with their own eyes.