“I might not be where I want to be, but I am definitely not where I used to be!” (Meyer, Joyce)
I am Ayub Das Pariyar from Kavrepalanchok, Nepal. A 19 years old young boy who was selected for Global UGRAD 2015/16, an exchange program facilitated and funded by Department of States, Unites States of America. It is a productive program which invites all potential leaders of tomorrow from all corners of the world, creating capable and creative “future leaders” for the betterment of world as a whole. The selection process was a tough competition, whose path was carefully guided, led and suggested by experts from PDRC (Professional Development and Research Centre). I am grateful towards PDRC for it’s selfless assistance to help me get selected for this program.
From Nepal this year, I along with two other participants represented Nepal in different parts of the US and in different ways. I still remember my reaction when I heard I was selected for the program by the bi-national fulbright official team from Nepal, and then again by the University of the US. I was in Grand Valley State University (GVSU), Michigan State (49401), Mid-west, USA. It was going to be a life changing moment which I wasn’t thinking seriously of. It’d alter the whole of understanding of the world and me myself as well. It’d teach me what is it to be, and what it takes to be a ‘global citizen’, a term commonly related by Americans to themselves.p (The least by those whom I met there!).
We were in the United States to study for a semester, where we could observe the American style of learning process and learn from it. The American style of learning was completely different to what I had been doing so far in Nepal. As I would say, I was so much overwhelmed by the freedom to choose the course that I wanted to study and the flexibility of course itself. The dedication of professors to ensure the quality of our learning was also excellent. The knowledge I gained was more of practicality, and less of traditional bookish. I am confident that I can use the skills, knowledge and techniques I learnt during the semester wherever I go.
The time in the States was not only of studies and observations, but also of knowing American Culture and fun. Often times, I spared my time to travel around the places in America, trying new things in food, musics, dances and different cultures. I found out that even a small city has much to offer to its spectators in America. From walking by the beach of saltless sea (The Great Lakes), to the Church Services during Sunday Nights, learning from each new experiences helped me build a broader understanding of the world we live in. I found myself well-connected to the American Culture, while not forgetting my own Nepali one.
There has also been some life changing moments when I was there. We UGRAD grantees from all over the world were gathered together in Washington DC, the capital of United States for workshop. I learnt so much about leadership, the life skills of making relations and project initiations, beneficial for our communities in homeland and ourselves too. There, I learnt the essence of being a ‘global human being’ first, a ‘patriotic individual’ second and a ‘change-maker’ the third.
Being a part of this program has definitely changed me to a person of better approach, realistic goals and consistent hard-work. Now, I along with two other participants have become GLOBAL UGRAD Alumni. It has been a blessed year for me: a year of change, a year of learning and a year of knowing. While I know I have a lot to achieve, a lot to work hard on. As the human life is all about traveling and learning through different experiences, our life would me measured on we knowing and passing what we have as a good individual. This is where I relate the quotation I stated earlier,” I might not be where I want to be, but I am definitely not where I used to be.”
Ayub Das Pariyar, Email: Lovelord102@gmail.com