Monday, December 22, 2014

“Middlesex to Humber - Dubai to Canada: Should I believe in Destiny?”


This article originally appeared on i-StudentGlobal on 8th October 2014.

If you are the kind of person who loves exploring new places and different cultures, you are a friend I will like. If you are a fan of good food, you are my best friend. If you also find it thrilling to go on adventures, especially participating in extreme sports, you and I are soul mates.

My name is Baneen Fatima and I am an international student of Humber College, Canada. I was born and raised in Dubai, UAE; but I ethnically belong to Pakistan. How did I happen to end up in Canada?  Well, it’s a long story.

With friends in Dubai
"How did I happen to end up in Canada?"
You see, I have always been the baby of the family, being the only daughter among three sons. For the most part of my life, I have been protected by my parents and to some extent, by my brothers. It didn’t help that I was a ‘go with the flow’ kind of a person, which meant that I didn’t really have a plan in life. So, when I started my post-secondary education at Middlesex University, Dubai, I managed to select a degree program based on statistical evidences that pointed toward successful future jobs. I know—I too was impressed with the amount of jargon used by the degree program and so, I completed it.

With brother in Dubai
"...the only daughter among three sons."
After I finished my bachelors at Middlesex, I tried to convince my parents to let me go and experiment with my life. Even though I had gone to university for several years, I still felt dependent and protected. I feared that if I didn’t push myself into a less comfortable lifestyle, I would never learn to cope with hard times. It may sound immature to some of you out there. You may think that this person, in spite of having everything handed to her on a silver platter, still wished to face the harsher side of life. You are right. That’s how my parents felt as well. So you can probably tell how difficult it must have been for my parents to let me go out into the big bad world all on my own. But then again, how else would I learn to walk on my own two feet?

My mum used to say that in order for one to learn how to fly, one needs to push themself off a cliff (not literally – duh!). It means that in order to do something amazing you need to take a leap of faith.

 "... you need to take a leap of faith."

My leap of faith was coming and studying in Canada. I have never traveled or lived alone and initially it was extremely difficult. I didn’t know why I was being asked to sign a contract when I bought a phone. I didn’t know what in the world G1 and G2 meant when it came to getting a driver’s license. I was in a strange world with no proper source of guidance. Well, at least until I started studying at Humber College.

I chose Humber College through online research. I had other second, third and fourth options in mind, but for some reason, Humber’s website and the way it had its programs planned, even the facilities provided for we, clueless, prospective international students – all of it just spoke to me. And so Humber was my choice and I applied online.

"And so Humber was my choice ..."
Now, after many career counselling sessions and countless career type tests, I am studying Design at Humber, and I am pretty happy with the decision. I finally feel that I am going to be doing something with my life. I don’t know if it was fate or destiny or mere coincidence. I like to believe that there was a reason why I chose Canada and a reason why I got into Humber. I guess we will only be able to tell when time unfolds!

Until then, stick around!

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