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Key to Get Overseas Scholarship

Maybe, this question not only happened to me, but also to those who had managed to study outside of the other hemisphere, mainly because they got scholarships.


Some may feel this question is very frustrating because, hey, if you really want to know, you can actually find information yourself on Google without asking me. But no, I myself might be among those who have asked the same question. Even though the process is clear and certain, that is seeking information, registering, completing requirements, praying, and waiting for the results. However, this question repeatedly popped into his head. Because to be honest, sometimes I am still surprised and half do not believe I can get a Fulbright scholarship to America, at one of the universities that I think is quite prestigious, namely the University of Arizona. Bear Down!

I personally feel lucky, but many also encourage me that it is not just luck, but also because of my struggles and my parents’ prayers. When I got this scholarship, I was not at an ambitious stage like when I was in college, where I was obsessed with getting the best grades and graduating as the best.

When applying for this scholarship, I surrendered, I was serious and tried my best, so if it didn’t work, I wouldn’t be too disappointed because at least I tried. However, then I realized, it was also the accumulation of my efforts during school and work, which at first was not to create a good CV in order to get a scholarship. In fact, when applying for a job or scholarship, the footprint will be taken into account as well. How serious have you been in studying or working before, so that you are entitled to this scholarship? How responsible are you going to school and previous work so you definitely won’t abuse this scholarship?

I dare say this because I have proven it. I don’t feel so smart that I can go to America. I used to dream of traveling around the world, but I felt it was only limited to wishful thinking. I remember also praying that I would be given the opportunity to go abroad even though I did not really feel the purpose. But it did come true.

I am just an ordinary Indonesian child who comes from a village that may not have an echo. My parents are just ordinary small farmers. Not even one in my family is an office employee, or a civil servant. I am the first generation to continue schooling to junior high, high school and college. Maybe that’s why I really meant it because I didn’t want my parents to go to waste. However, I myself feel that my thinking, even today, is very narrow because my world is small, and I only accept what is presented to me, a thought that I am still trying to change. So if some people feel I am humble, that is not entirely true, because I really do not have anything to boast about. When I was in school when I was a champion or when I got a good GPA, I knew I could take responsibility for it, because I really learned, tried and did not just relax, let alone cheat to get the value ‘A’. Everything comes with a price, I don’t think so because it’s really smart from the sononya. So, this is what I want you to think:


Being able to study in America is indeed a gift for me, especially I have had the opportunity to channel my ‘mbolang’ hobby to beautiful places. I can feel myself playing snow in the winter, staring at the leaves on trees that change color in the fall, all that is not in my country, Indonesia. But what I get is more than that. To America with scholarships, not only about mutual understanding between America and our culture, but furthermore: it’s about the world!

I met many people from across continents with different backgrounds. The interesting thing is that I can exchange ideas with them and sometimes I am amazed by the way they have never been in my mind. I became aware of their culture and instead of judging it, it made me understand, understand and appreciate them more. So actually going to America (or other countries) is not merely to check in at a different place, more than that is to open our minds.


Another thing I like about studying in America is that I know how it feels to be a minority. As a Muslim, I belong to the majority group in Indonesia. Even though I have always had good relations with friends who are of different religions, being a minority in that country is very challenging. At first I was worried that there would be many people who disliked me, especially because I was wearing a hijab, my Islamic identity was very visible. We ourselves often hear a lot of media preaching the bad image of Islam in the world. Guess what, so far, Alhamdulillah, I feel safe and calm. I met many people who were very kind and friendly to me. They are very appreciative and always ready to help me. I feel protected. I think, maybe a minority group in Indonesia feels the same happiness when we respect and respect differences. And maybe, they feel the same fear and worry when we try to cheat their rights. My previous concerns were natural, but I didn’t need to worry too much, because in this life the basic principle is:


Aside from meeting with Americans and friends from other countries, I certainly also met with fellow practitioners from Indonesia who were not all under the auspices of the Fulbright, but different scholarship programs. I became embarrassed because I did not know about the programs before.

It turned out that the scholarship opportunity was far more than I expected. And this limited information is still a problem for parts of Indonesia. Even though there are many scholarship opportunities, not all of them have equal access to the information and not all are used to finding out for themselves.

It is not intended to indulge in the types of people who still like to be “fed” with this kind of information, but everyone needs different time to open their minds before they can be independent. It would be better if the school or the existing ranks expose as much information as possible about scholarships to students or students while training them to find information independently. Sometimes they don’t try not because they are afraid they don’t succeed, but precisely because they don’t know that they have the opportunity to try. And if they don’t find out, maybe because they are not familiar with things outside of what is being served to them. It’s our job to change this. Give them exposure to the opportunities, train them to look for this opportunity, and if one or two people succeed, we can hope that it can inspire and motivate others, not just in big cities or places, but we also need to show opportunities the same in other small or remote cities.

And if in the end there are those who are afraid to try even though they already know the opportunity, even though luck and external factors also contribute to our success / failure, we will never know if we don’t try.

If I’m not trying to apply for this scholarship, I’m 100% definitely not going to get it right? If I don’t try, the probability is only 1: I failed. By trying, you have two possibilities: succeed and fail. And you can keep trying, praying, and don’t forget to ask your parents’ blessing.


I hope that this writing rattles me has benefits. And I hope my writing will be read by my younger siblings in my school first or in other schools.


Tips for College While Working

Studying abroad without being funded by a scholarship can be very difficult. Therefore, it’s a good idea to make a financial budget carefully before deciding to study abroad. To ease the burden of expenses, you can consider going to college while working.

The consideration is whether part-time work will interfere with your studies. Actually it won’t be a problem if you can share your time well and be willing to work hard. The benefits of part-time work in addition to reducing costs are that you can hone your English skills. Then you also have a good chance to mingle with the local community. Especially if you have the opportunity to work in an office, this work experience will certainly add a plus when you are looking for work after graduating later.

There are indeed cases in America where foreign students get unpleasant treatment from their employers. Actually local students can experience the same thing. The cause here is the lack of information about workplaces and obstacles in fluency. As long as you choose your employer carefully, you can minimize unwanted events.

Before starting part-time work, do the following:

Check your visa

Visas with certain categories – such as Tier 4 visas in the UK – do not allow foreign students to work. Other visas may allow foreign students to work, but at certain time limits. For example in New Zealand, foreign students are not allowed to work more than 20 hours per week. If you violate these rules, you can be asked to immediately leave the country. So, before starting part-time work, check the limits of your visa.

Ask other foreign students

You can ask foreign students who work part time, there may be vacancies in their workplaces, or you can find information about the reputation of employers or workplaces that are more friendly to foreign students.

Consult with the university

Usually universities provide counseling services regarding part-time work. They even have connections with local companies. That way, you have the opportunity to get a job that is more secure and in accordance with your field of study.

Expertise That Needs a Student to Have

What is the lecture like? What is certain is that lecture life is of course very different from the life of high school. Starting from the style of the lecturer delivering lessons, completing assignments, participating in class and finding new friends, all are new experiences for a student who is just starting his steps as a student.

Steven Schwartz from The Guardian explained some of the skills students need to have to adjust to university life. Sometimes there are those who already have these skills but do not have the opportunity to show them so that they are not aware of their own potential. There are also some who while living university life have the opportunity to hone these skills. Yes, college is indeed the right time to look for and shape our own identity.

So what are some important skills for a student to have in order to achieve the best in college?

1. Flexible

Open minded is important. During college, especially abroad, of course we will see many differences of opinion and habits of life. That is a natural thing, because a different background will certainly affect the way of thinking and habits of one’s life. Considering that difference is something wrong is not the right step. It would be better to take advantage of this unique opportunity to get to know the culture and habits of fellow students from other countries and mingle with them. Thus you have one of the criteria that the company is interested in.

2. Never Surrender

Maybe some students face difficulties at the beginning of college. But don’t give up quickly. It’s natural to face culture shock, homesick, panic can’t take lessons and more. Relax, foreign universities always provide support services for international students. Starting from the place of consultation to counselors to help students take lessons. So when you find a problem, talk and seek help. After that maybe you will feel, actually this problem is not as big as I thought.

3. Can adjust

The more we mature, adjusting to the situation is very important. As children, maybe people around us still give understanding and yield. But this is not valid during college. For example, you are afraid to make a presentation in public. The lecturer will probably understand, but to get value, you still have to present well. The solution is to go to a student support center at the university. There they will give input and train you. One of the supervisors there is probably your senior who also used to have a feeling of insecurity to speak in public places. College is the time to get out of your comfort zone. Always don’t be afraid to talk about the problem at hand and ask for help. The student support center is there because the university understands naturally new students face discomfort with their new life. What is important, students want to try to find solutions.

4. Become a good member of the group

In college there are many tasks that must be completed in groups. Not because this task cannot be resolved on its own, but the lecturers do want to practice the ability to work in groups of students, where they can divide tasks, complete responsibilities, and more importantly, learn to be flexible and be able to overcome differences between group members. This group work is also a good opportunity to bring students closer to each other.

5. Technology Literacy

The university is full of sophisticated IT facilities. Because technology does make life easier for today’s society. So you should follow the times. At least make sure you know the software, applications or gadgets that are trending among students or in fields that are relevant to your studies.

6. Can read the situation

Wise people can read the situation, so they can teach or even lead. Whereas people who are not aware of what is happening can only follow. This ability will be very valuable when entering the real world: the world of work, where the boss or the people around us will not clearly tell us what we should do. So it must be smart to read the situation.

7. Learning without limits

During college grades are certainly important. But what is meant by learning here is not just knowledge but also other interpersonal skills. Science is limitless, so is the world we live in now. Change is always there, so we must stay alert and learn so we don’t miss it.

8. Take advantage of opportunities

For some people, what is important in college is pursuing value, so that you can get a certificate with good grades. But there are also people who use college to make friends, enjoy social life as a student. Some others understand that lecture is a preparation for entering the workforce, so that this time is well utilized to establish connections, both with lecturers, or with superiors during internships, so that later it is easier to find work. Which do you include?

Want to get out of your comfort zone immediately? Start by looking for a study program abroad that suits your interests and talents.

Don’t forget, i-Apply is always there if you need consultation about deciding majors, choosing a destination for college or other registration assistance.