January 7, 2005

Getting VISA

My father helped me greatly in collecting all the documents – against
all odds. The banks said a firm 'No-No' for the 50,000 loan for
airfare. I reached the breaking point several times – often I had said
to Ashwini, 'let me take this scholarship offer in September 2005
intake' several times. To my great luck, wherever I go, be it the
notary public or CA – they will say a sweet 'we-will-do-it' then, take
a leave and vanish out-of-station. PVA done in a week's time, after
sending medicals – I held my breath. Thank God, you didn't make a
final mess! I got VISA ;-)

After a month's time – I could not believe all those happened. Am I
really traveling out of the country? – Am I really going to study
abroad? I always imagined what if I ever get another chance to study –
it would be great as I know practically after working in the industry
for some time. Some of my friends say now, everything's settled, I
don't think so. I had to do a lot from now on. I have big plans and I
consider this as a small but important starting point. I have to make most of
it for myself and for everyone around me.

Every time one of my friends go abroad (from their office) – I would
go for the send-offs to Bangalore Airport – always thinking 'Mera
Number Kab Ayega?' (Is it correct, I don't know & don't like Hindi – I
consider watching a Hindi movie is the worst punishment a person can
undergo in this planet!). Even, I tried a resolution also that 'if I
ever visit Airport, it would be for my departure (to another
country)'. But, I had to visit again for two more times for receiving
some friends.

It will be an understatement if I say 'IDP has made a difference in my
life'. You have done more than that. I don't know how to express my
gratitude to all of you. I don't know how I can give back for those I
received. I would be happy to help you in anyway. Do mail me, casually
also. I will write these kind of mails whenever I get time.

January 6, 2005

Ashwini and IDP

Ashwini, third and most important – who materialized my dream which
otherwise would've remained as mere dream. This is actually
interesting part. After deciding and choosing Australia, my biggest
worry is Money! I am damn sure that if I was not given a scholarship –
there will be no one to help me in reaching out. I wrote in my
personal notebook, 'my immediate dream is to get admission in an
Australian university with full financial aid – only air fare should
be from my expenses.' (I will show you, if you want! Then, I broke
into steps – how to go about). Everything fell in place at the right
time – Interview with Australian professors – so, I handed over my
applications with them – not even spent a paisa for postage ;-) –
getting the desired IELTS score – 7.5 well almost 8. I was reluctant
to do MS by research – as attend classes – write exams – forget and
enjoy holidays – was my usual mantra! So, I applied to Melbourne,
Queensland for MS by Coursework. I mentioned MS by research at Univ of
Adelaide. I pinned my hopes on UniMelb (MS by research as first
option, coursework as second option), who mentioned I just fell short
in meeting the criteria for making it to MS by research. Queensland
offer mentioned about 26 lakhs fees for 2 years. Adelaide, also
mentioned the same amount in the offer letter. Only silver (or
Golden??!!) lining was – Adelaide was considering my application for
scholarship.

I would've been the first to close the file (at IDP), if I had not
asked the advice of Ashwini. I would know, no one of my relatives or
my father are in a position to sponsor - forget the studies.. not
even my travel ( I can't blame them, I have been working for almost 4
years – I don't have savings either!). I said 'it's tough Ashwini,
forget it'. I didn't ask any bank, didn't fill my PVA form, with so
much reluctance – I asked her to withdraw my VISA deposit Demand
Draft. Ashwini asked me to write to the universities to provide me a
tuion fee waiver. I wrote to them, got a prompt "NO" replies from
Melbourne and Queensland. I never got a reply from Adelaide, as usual!
Thus, I closed my Australian Dream. I started considering my next
preferred destination, UK. Asish (another 'A') – was my colleague,
decided in a week time – that he is going for study in UK – within a
month's time got his admission, VISA everything – as he had his
sister's (who is living there) sponsorship. I applied for British
Chevening Scholarships 2005. Also, I applied for UK Commonwealth
Fellowship Programme 2005 – which covers tuition fees, living
expenses, travel even cloth expenses! (Only condition is, I need to
return to INDIA once my course gets over – not a big deal – as I am
100% prepared for it – I have dreams for my country too!) I was
confident of getting it through, since Satellite Remote Sensing (a
subject where the images / photos taken by satellite is analysed for
finding out earth's resources for agriculture, water resources
development etc.) was an exclusive category. Expectedly, I got
shortlisted for interview at Delhi on Dec 12th. As I was thinking of
preparing the documents, I got the call from Ashwini saying the good
news – a full scholarship to Adelaide!

I have seen in my life, God opens to me only one door at a time (much
to my relief!) – shutting all other options firmly. I could not attend
the interview, as I had to submit my original certificates here to
AHC.

January 5, 2005

I am blessed by angels!

I am blessed by angels, I think. Wherever I go, I meet the people who
are eager to help me. There are few A's who helped me in materializing
my Australian Dream. Anandhi, first – She is a nice, colleague with
helping nature – she is doing her PhD at IISc (she was M.E. graduate
from Anna University, she finished her M.E. even before I entered BE.)
after her marriage, who inspired me to go for higher studies. She
would provide all the scholarship information, where to study etc. I
will find her mail almost daily in my inbox.

Arun, second – my friend since we met during BE first class, a civil
engineering student, finished his M.E, doing PhD and working at Anna
University. He entered Anna University in 1995 and after a decade he
will leave in 2005. He came with me to every professor's room (after 5
years, who will remember me??!!) and helped me getting transcripts,
reference letters. In college, I was not among the top group or the
bottom group. So, I was somewhere in the middle, any professor will
have a hazy picture about me – an average student. We used to fight to
get a seat in the back bench, proudly saying backbench boys. We played
the entire quota of our lifetime cricket in those four years – always
anyone can find our class in the ground (preferably basket ball
ground!) playing with tennis ball (what strange combinations!). Even
though, we planned in our office, it didn't materialize to play
cricket again! We – the class of 1995 – never gel with either seniors
or juniors – forget the professors. So, it would've been a nightmare
to visit my college and meet the professors again, if Arun was not
with me.

January 4, 2005

Back to School!

After 6 years, I was thinking of studying a Master's in GIS. I was not
interested in US as I need to a Master's in Geography with a
specialisation of GIS. I needed to choose an application area like GIS
in Water Resources, GIS in Town Planning like that. So, I kept my mind
open and searched for a good destination. My list included Canada at
the top (The birthplace of GIS and they are the pioneers now also!),
then Australia (for good institutions like UniMelb, UQ and Univ of
Adelaide and very good professors) and finally UK. When I started, I
was late to apply for canada. I readily got help (coincidence!!) for
Australia, as you know, So, my journey begun.

I think, it was 28th August 2004, I fixed an appointment for
Information Seminar in IDP with Ms. Priya. Then, in the first week of
September, my personal counsellor assigned. Before that, my course /
field of study was asked. I said Geoinformatics /GIS. I didn't say a
word more. I did lot of homework choosing the institutions offering MS
GIS and prioritized the 3 universities. To my amazement, you (my
counsellor) also worked to find out what is GIS and the universities
offered etc when I turned up for my first personal counselling
session! I never looked back, then onwards!

Back to School!

After 6 years, I was thinking of studying a Master's in GIS. I was not
interested in US as I need to a Master's in Geography with a
specialisation of GIS. I needed to choose an application area like GIS
in Water Resources, GIS in Town Planning like that. So, I kept my mind
open and searched for a good destination. My list included Canada at
the top (The birthplace of GIS and they are the pioneers now also!),
then Australia (for good institutions like UniMelb, UQ and Univ of
Adelaide and very good professors) and finally UK. When I started, I
was late to apply for canada. I readily got help (coincidence!!) for
Australia, as you know, So, my journey begun.

I think, it was 28th August 2004, I fixed an appointment for
Information Seminar in IDP with Ms. Priya. Then, in the first week of
September, my personal counsellor assigned. Before that, my course /
field of study was asked. I said Geoinformatics /GIS. I didn't say a
word more. I did lot of homework choosing the institutions offering MS
GIS and prioritized the 3 universities. To my amazement, you (my
counsellor) also worked to find out what is GIS and the universities
offered etc when I turned up for my first personal counselling
session! I never looked back, then onwards!

January 3, 2005

A Dream

Absolutely, it looks like a dream to me. I came across the "IDP
Education Australia" in the year 1998 in my college (Anna University)
notice board. (At that time, IDP was present in Delhi, Mumbai and
Chennai, I think) I was impressed very much by the kangaroo logo (a
beautiful line sketch depicting a jumping kangaroo), so I flicked ;-)
it from the notice board (of course, when no one was watching). I
practiced from that (drawing the kangaroo sketch) in almost all of my
room, notebooks. Those were the days - that studying abroad means ->
Read "Word Power Made Easy"-> Memorise -> Word Lists -> Write GRE ->
Score in TOEFL -> Land in U.S. formula. We, the backbench boys -
carefully staed away from them! Little did I know that later someday I
will go to one of the IDP office! (Forget that, I never imagined
myself going abroad for study!)

January 1, 2005

A Welcome Note!


Hi,


Welcome to my Space in the Web!

I wonder how Blogging become a favourite hobby among netizens and become a huge success all of a sudden. I consider that’s because of two things mainly.

At First, Everyone on this earth has something to tell – everyone has a viewpoint be it Bill Clinton or a Bank Clerk. Everyone wants to BE LISTENED.

Second, Everyone wants a platform to express their feelings, words, writings, sayings.. Writing a story, poem or an article may solve – but everyone’s work may not be published – as it is in the hands of the publisher. So, a Blogging Site offers a FREE SPACE to tell what you want to tell – No rules, You are the King!

Add to these, you can tell your views to the WORLD.

Here’s my bloggings!
You can Read or NOT Read!
You can Write to me or NOT!
You can do whatever you want
But, I am going to write what I feel, think!


So, my dream journey begins !!