Sample Biography Paper on Taking courses In High School and College

Personal Biography

Taking courses In High School and College

I started my education at Local learning institutions in my home country. I was a naïve student since I had never interacted with different people from other nations. I had learnt only first language, which I could use comfortably and did not have enough knowledge concerning English-speaking people. My English speaking skills and listening were not good enough and could not communicate well with people who speak it well. I could have major problems and even was shy at my home area when using it. Neither I had learnt first language in both high school and college levels of my education and could speak fluent English as a second language nor could I manage to express myself in public. I did not have self-confidence to express myself, enquire from people, and learn different people’s experiences. In high school and college level of my academic progress, I interacted with local people who only practiced local culture, which I became used to, connected and associated with it without struggling or putting a lot of effort to learn.

My whole life in secondary school level, I had not interacted with people from different nations to whom I could have learnt different way of living of which could have been even a little dissimilar to mine. I had not travelled outside my country even during vocations to explore, learn and appreciate other people’s way of life and of doing things. Taking a course abroad would enhance my English language skills, self confidence, learn to be independent person and appreciate diverse communities living in United States which will be of great important in helping me understand and deal with other different people from diverse parts of the world. In high school, I completely depended on my parents, relatives, and friends to do things or to solve life problems on my behalf.

This approach did not change a thing even in college where I depended on my parents to live comfortable life without paying any attention on my personal needs. I knew someone is looking after me and I could not worry about a thing. Everything I did in high school and first years in college was under close supervision and control of parents, close relatives, and lecturers. I could not even think about issues that were affecting me directly for instance, I thought less about my personal need like where to sleep, what to eat, when to  go to school or even how to spend my leisure time. I fully depended on my family for every bit of my life concerning any issue or challenge that was affecting me. I had never been on my own in high school to think or interact independently with different people apart from my community and family members.

In college level, I had a great dream of studying a broad and I would have given everything to make this dream come true. I interacted with my lecturers enquiring of how this idea of studying abroad could be realized and whether it was even possible to study in United States.  I always thought of how it could be interacting with different people from different backgrounds, which were dissimilar to mine, and also learning a second language that was different from my native speaking and first language. My parent fully supported me in this idea because they could have wanted to make me learn to be a responsible person who could make decisions alone and be ready to face the consequences, gain self-confidence and be independent.

Advanced degree in the USA

I received the information to study advanced degree in USA using online sources and using internet to search for more information on Universities websites abroad. I also enquired for the information from my colleagues in college who had studied abroad and in the same University that I had interest in joining. I enquired from them about how one can secure accommodation especially close to the University, which was convenient for a student from their previous experiences when studying in America.   This had resulted from great drive and of interest of having different experience when studying abroad in an environment that was different from norm. I also got a lot of support from my professor once I enquired about taking a different deviation and advancing my studies abroad. My professor was more informed and openly and willingly shared with me more about studying abroad and was more willing to support me anytime I was stuck. Professor also encouraged me by emphasizing on the exemptions and being given credit on the hours that I had finished since the University had an agreement with my former college at home country. The professors assisted me on how I could benefit from diverse knowledge for instance, on how people live in different nations and also get to appreciate different cultures.

I decided to study for advanced degree in United States to learn more about different cultures, languages, deepen my understanding on how to deal with different people and most importantly learn to be responsible, enhance my confidence level when relying on myself and making decisions in life. I also wanted to learn on how to manage finances on my own without control from my parents, using different currency was also a motivator of studying in USA especially being one of the strongest economy worldwide. I was also motivated by the fact that I would have degree from USA of which will be highly recognized worldwide. This meant a lot to me because I was almost assured that USA institutions are recognized all over the world and this will give me a chance to work in any part of the World hence meeting different people and continue learning different cultures and experiences. Acquiring advanced degree in USA, I was also assured that I will be more marketable at my home country when looking for job minimizing chances of depending with my parents for financial support and helping me secure a job. I had a lofty goal of being independent and responsible relying minimally with my parents, enhancing level of confidence and the more I was far from them, the more I improved in all these areas. This played major role on my intentions and decision to study in USA for my advanced degree. Advancing my degree in USA enhanced my language too, which was also not good enough but better compared to the time when I was joining the Institute for the first time and could not express myself fully to the English-speaking people. I used to shy off when expressing myself in English especially at my home country but, in USA I learnt to be confident and could not fear making mistake or using poor English as compared to the native residents who were very fluent when using English since it was their first language.

I graduated in May 2014 and obtained my Bachelors degree in USA as it has been my dream. I immediately thought of getting my Master degree as well in USA and after I applied for it, I received an acceptance letter from the university instructing on the need to report for more formalities and so that I could start advancing in my post graduate degree. I also wanted to take an advanced degree in USA to continue exploring different part of the country when I was in University, which had not happened to me for the previous years before starting my studies abroad. I knew when taking advance degree in USA I would have ample time to visit different extra places, meet many people learn extra cultures and values at the same time as I continued with my studies. This was a great opportunity to explore while still achieving my academic goals and acquire more knowledge that will help me deal with daily personal issues especially when relating with people from different cultural backgrounds.

Immigrations Encounters

It was a bit difficult for me to study abroad for the first days, which was totally contrary to my expectations. Before travelling to US to continue and advance on my studies abroad, I had high expectations and did not allocate any contingency to my great ambitious plans. It was not as easy as thought and planned for to study abroad especially when it turn out to be a reality. Meeting with people I had not encountered with before was a bit challenging for the first days keeping in mind that I was not in a position to use their native language as good as they did.

After my arriving in America, I was shocked just for being outside my country and knowing that I was not with my parents, and had no one to rely on completely anymore. I met three students at the IAD airport in Washington DC who were also looking for a hostel just like me. They helped me by informing how our Embassy could be of help to us. We went to a hotel where we spent the first night, I was so lucky to meet the three students especially when I realized that one of them had enrolled in the same University that I was to report to. The first encounter was so impressive because from that moment I met friends to whom I could enquire and share experiences with. I was also fully assisted at embassy, which made it easy for me to settle in USA for the first time. It was really a great chance for me to step my feet in United Sates of America for the first time and to interact with different people. I was also glad to learn and achieve my lifetime dreams of achieving a bachelor and master degree in USA. It was a great encounter but it also did not lack its shortcomings as explained below.

Culture barriers

I thought I had prepared myself enough to adapt to a new life abroad through proper learning using the internet, enquiring from my fellow students who had prior experience when studying abroad and my professor, but I could not have prepared myself enough. A cultural difference especially culture shock was an unavoidable experience and that is hard to forget. I was shocked to find out that how I read the travel guides and internet about the way people talk, eat, dress, and think was totally different from what I encountered. This really stressed me in the first days and I could even feel like packing my bags and leave.

Cultural differences brought about culture shocks that resulted to homesick, missing the family members, friends and the people who could understand me better in home country than those in foreign nations. I also missed the environment that I was used to and the one I felt more comfortable living than I was for the first days of my arrival. At my arrival, I was extremely cheerful, interested and happy to step on a different soil and travelling abroad to achieve my academic goals and also have a different adventure. I discovered new places made new friends, which really made me feel happy; like I was achieving all of my dreams. This feeling did not last longer; I started to realize I was in a foreign nation different from my country of origin. As a result of this, the feelings of excitement, happiness, and interests were replaced by frustration, sadness and confusion. I became a bit restless though I tried consistently to calm myself down and settle though could not control it or help myself out, I shared my experience with my friends who helped me overcame that feeling.

As days passed by, I ended up managing successfully on how to overcome the cultural barrier, it was not a simple task since I had to keep myself alert on cultural activities in USA and stopped comparing them with home country culture and instead enjoyed the experience. I remained positive towards adapting to new culture and developed a hobby to interrupt my concentration and thoughts of differences in culture. I also got support from other international students from my University who had a similar or managed to overcome the challenge encountered, while at the same time giving myself ample time to adjust to the new culture. Finally, I managed to overcome that feeling which resulted from the culture differences. I started to feel confident again, on what I was doing, understood and accepted the differences especially cultural related which differed from those of my host country. I started to feel like I belonged to the new country and almost forgot all the differences I was experiencing. I started to enjoy my stay comfortably without any confusion to an extent of preferring some cultural traits of the new culture that I experienced to those of my host country.

Language barrier:

Language barrier was an experience that extremely challenged me during my first days especially at arrival time in USA. English was my second language and I could not use it fluently to either express myself or participate in any kind of a discussion forum comfortably. This was especially worsened by the native speaker’s use of idioms and slang phrases that I had no idea of and could rarely understood them. I could sit in class trying to understand what lecturer was explaining, and ended up comprehending just a little or none out of the whole lesson due to strong local ascents used. This was a stressful and really a challenging encounter since I could not explain what I wanted and desired, or contribute properly and fully to any group discussion.

Acquiring new skills especially in language was a challenge that I encountered and struggled to overcome it, I watched movies and television listened to radio to enhance my skills in English language. I avoided being shy and was always confident when participating in any conversion irrespective of my poor communication skills when using English language. I avoided watching any website in my native language and always asked from my friends in University for clarification whenever I failed to understand the concepts caused by misunderstanding of language used or phrases, which I was not used to.  My English speaking and listening skills were also enhanced through making friends with those who were fluent in it especially the native speakers who helped me have a major turnaround. I also kept on reminding them that their points of correction were greatly appreciated and as a result, they could not shy off when correcting me and caused a drastic improvement in my English speaking skills and listening too.

Currency difference

I was not used to buying particulars using a different currency apart from my local currency from my home country. This brought a major challenge to me for the first few days in USA especially when determining the value and costs of items in a different currency. I did not know the normal price of an item using a different currency hence I had to enquire from sales people or my fellow students who were used to American currency.

Suggestions to Those Willing To Study Abroad

My point of proposal to the students who have an ambitious plan to advance academically in International Schools is to avoid far possible the aspect of stereotyping and forming adverse judgment or opinion beforehand without good justification about the nation they would be studying and its citizens. It is always hard to get rid of stereotyping and it might be firmly held in ones subconscious mind. Stereotyping might lead a student to losing an opportunity of making friends with native students of country to which they possibly will be studying just because they had prior information, which could be misguiding towards people of that country. This could be denying students opportunities of meeting good friends and people. Instead of relying on stereotyping, it is advisable for students to put effort to learn other people hence appreciating their ways of doing things and life style. In addition, students from disadvantaged societies should not allow themselves to develop a sense of low self-esteem when joining Universities at developed nations. They might be perceived differently by how they talk, dress and look but, they should understand that this is just an initial reaction and after a short time they might end up being adored them and respected for their uniqueness.

Students studying a broad face major challenges but they can all be handled after one appreciates different cultures, be ready to learn from local people and have a great willingness to be corrected. Making new friends with native students is of great importance since they would help one learn quickly and adapt to the new environment with ease. This will enable comfortable stay and lower levels of depressions resulting from discomfort of being addressed as a stranger in foreign nation.