Burned Ambitions? No. Delayed Ambitions.

This month has been a crazy one. It all started, to my surprise, when I was accepted into Michigan State University. Michigan State is absolutely my favorite university, despite it “just being a state college”. It’s really so much more than that to me. This university offers a unique program only offered by four or five select universities around the nation – The Arabic Flag Ship Program. This program would assist me in understanding and learning the Arabic language and culture, as well as provides me with to opportunity to study abroad, long term, during university. (Although I plan to study abroad more than just once.) The program guarantees advanced level in Arabic after completing their program. Also, MSU offers unique “Freshmen Seminar Abroad” (FSA) opportunities for freshmen.  FSA cost about 3k (which includes everything) and take place for two weeks during summer/winter break in either Dubai, South Africa, New Zealand, Ireland, Italy or China. My top choice is Dubai, then South Africa, and then China. China is more of just a “oh it would be cool to see that country” opportunity to me, haha. South Africa fascinates me, and I dream of going there one day – maybe to volunteer or even teach (or volunteer teaching). And the of course Dubai…it’s my passion mixed together with some old school vacation. Dubai is a very interesting place, West meets East.

I entered into an essay writing contest on the Republic of Azerbaijan. The ten winners would be selected for a two week trip to Azerbaijan. I made it into the Nationals (as in my essay was chosen to represent NC) but sadly was rejected at the finals.

The next thing that got me this month was getting accepted into something called “Benjamin Franklin Summer Institute with South and Central Asia” (BFSIA) I was one of 10 people (out of the 70 who applied) that received this scholarship. This summer, I will be spending 4weeks in Virginia living at a local university. I will dorm with, and study with, students from the U.S.A and South/Central Asia (mostly India and Pakistan). We will have classes on culture, foreign policy, Peace and Conflict Resolution and so so so much more. We visit Washington DC, as well as NYC and the United Nations. And of course there’s probably something I’m leaving out! We also live with host families. The American Students will be placed with host families from a different country. I’m thrilled to receive this scholarship! So blessed! and I am looking forward to this amazing experience!

Lastly, last night, I was rejected from the one I wanted most. National Language Initiative For Youth.  (NSLI-Y) I applied to spend a gap year in Morocco (the country offered for Arabic year students) with NSLI-Y. I watched countless people make it into other countries for their scholarships (IE China, Korea) but for some reason I only saw one person win Arabic Year, and she’s turning it down for university. Everyone is a little astonished at how very little Arabic scholarships went out, considering it’s the language the department of state encourages us to learn the most. I’m still kind of in denial. Not that I think I’m better than anyone else, it’s just that for 7 months I looked forward to these results and received a rejection.  ~ouch. 😦

In any case, I received 2/4 things I desired! I didn’t get the BIG one, but with the ones I did get, I know it will open many many doors for me. Michigan State is a great university, with great opportunity. BFIA is a well-recognized competitive program, and I know for a fact this is going to open a few doors as well. (not to mention the ton I will learn, the growth I will experience, and the lessons I will take home with me…oh and the friends. I look forward to making a ton of friends!)

So. I started climbing that latter, and I reached for a step a little too high, instead, I was blessed with the step below it. However, I have a feeling reaching this step will prove to be more beneficial than reaching that big one. Everything happens for a reason. My journey  has only begun.

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