It's been a long while since I last blogged about something substantial, let strongly feel about.
When I first stepped into uni late last year, I felt a strong sense of belonging... elsewhere. And I remembered feeling like my heart was going to burst from that want.
I remember questioning myself and the people around me what was I doing with my life and how is reading a dead textbook going to grow me and make me a better person.
I remember my wifey, Phaik Chern talking to me about Minerva Schools. And I thought, "Why not?" I've always been an avid believer of trying, because I was brought up that way. I can so clearly visualize mom's voice saying, "If you never try, then you'll never know."
I remember having read about Minerva Schools in the newspaper once, and my sister telling me that if I'm good enough, then I can be like them one day.
Fast forward ahead of the arduous applications process, cognitive tests and interviews and just about more than a month ago, I received an e-mail from Minerva Schools - "Today, you will know." But of course, I didn't know then because blame it on timezones. I was so caught up with uni then that I hadn't found time to properly sit my ass down and mentally prepare for what I was about to know.
Then during another one of my food poisoning stints (this time, it was the tuna in the fridge), I picked up a call from Kenn Ross, MD for Asia, asking me to check my e-mail and so I did.
Now, just what exactly is this 'school' that I'm talking about?
Minerva Schools offers a reinvented university experience for the brightest and most motivated students from around the world. Minerva places emphasis on global cultural immersion and encourages students to explore the city as their campus. At Minerva, students travel and live together at different residential locations on almost every continent, in cities such as San Francisco, Berlin, Buenos Aires, Seoul, Bangalore, Istanbul and London.
This year, they received 11,000 over applications and accepted only ~200 - a mere average rate of 2%.
Of course, it comes with a price. And the very fact that I am attending a public university in Malaysia itself is proof that my family is unable to offer me an overseas education experience but financial aid from Minerva has been extremely helpful and generous. Out of the estimated 28,000 USD per year, I only now have to pay 5,000 USD per year but that is exclusive of flight tickets and other miscellaneous fees which might inevitably crop up - one of my family's largest concerns.
When I applied for Minerva, I took it seriously. I was nervous, excited and I was expecting the worst, yet hoping for the best.
Ever since that fateful day when I received that e-mail, I felt like I've been living two lives at once - the one I have to keep up with and the one I want (I think).
Going to Minerva would mean that I'll finally get my opportunity to travel and learn from the world and its people, like what I've always preached about. It would mean meeting many of the most talented young people from all over and making lifelong friendships. It would mean a chance of a lifetime.
Going to Minerva, also meant leaving what is safe, comfortable and familiar. It meant leaving the Scuba Diving Club I was about to take up, my pending floorball dream which still has yet to come true (though looking at its state right now I doubt I'd want to be a part of it yet, and much of that utmost dedication and importance I once placed on floorball has somewhat dwindled as I learned that there were other aspects in life I've yet to explore). It also meant leaving and putting a burden on my old and aging parents (and dog).
There are some days where I feel, "If the money doesn't come, then perhaps it isn't meant to be." and there are days where I just downright say, "I want to go to Minerva."
5000USD is not a huge amount yet at the same time, it is.
This is a whole load of confusion, and I've no idea where this is going so I'm going to bed.
I'm just hoping God shows me the way.