Way back in 1987, according to the UWC scholarship application essay, one of the reasons I wanted to attend a UWC was for some vague desire to learn “about the world and the people who live on it.”
Here is the full text, word-for-word, with all the mistakes!
For the last two weeks I have been attending Amrit Science Campus here in Kathmandu. I know that I won’t get the education I seek studying here. Attending one of the United World Colleges is the perfect alternative I have found.
I have a strong desire to learn more about the world and the people who live on it. I can in no way fulfill this wish remaining here. Education here is restricted to book-knowledge, that even consisting mainly of mere rote-learning. Besides that, there are more than sixty students per class. As a consequence, there is more noise and distraction than learning. Whereas, in a United World College, I was told (by Birendra [surname], a UWC graduate) that there is only around fifteen students in a class. Anyone can see that the fewer the number of students, the easier will it be for teachers to teach as well as for the students to learn. Furthermore, all the students will have an equally strong motive to learn. The atmosphere there will thus be that of a classroom with brains at work, not that of a mad house as it is over here. Naturally one can gain a lot more there.
At a United World College, all the students will have come from different social and cultural backgrounds. The teachers too–Birendra told me–came from different places. Living among and studying with them under one roof in itself would be a great source of knowledge…knowledge of people. I will be able to get an insight on their respective ways of thinking and doing things and have a better understanding of them. I’ll thus get to know the world better.
I can contribute a lot to this learning process. I come from Mustang, one of the most under-developed regions in Nepal. Mustang where schooling is but a distant dream; Mustang where backward civilization prevails, and, as a result, primitive ways and beliefs still exist. For instance, they still have their own “King” who bear rule over them. Mustang is only one of many such places in Nepal. I will be able to introduce other Nepal not as how Kathmandu is but the Nepal that has places like Mustang and people like me.
Lastly, I feel I am not as yet “well-equipped”–so to speak–to go on to college. Entering college from high school here is a very big step. College courses here are very advanced but the standard of education at both high schools and colleges are very low. So the high school studies does not help in college as much as it should. Compared to other high schools in the country, the standard of education at St. Xavier’s is very high though. I even got the opportunity to give the Cambridge “O” Level Examination which helped a lot personally. Even then, I would like to further pursue my studies before going to college. If there is any institution where I can do this, the best is a United World College.
Attending United World College of the Adriatic and other academic institutions abroad and following that up with an international teaching career, not only did I learn about the rest of the world and other people, I came to learn a great deal about my own country, about my own people, about my own cultures (Tibeto-Nepalese and Hindu-Nepalese) and about myself.
What did you want to do with your life as you were approaching the end of your high school career? What did you end up doing?
Did you as a school-going child want to travel and see the world? If so why? Please feel free to share.