Experience Studying in Malaysia

Experiencing the university life and its surroundings was one of my lifelong dreams which were finally coming true. Coming into university, I really had no idea what to expect. I have heard a lot of different things from a lot of different people, yet excited and thrilled to come and study.

I still get cramps and shiver remembering the feeling of traveling to Malaysia, as it was my first time traveling in a plane and alone. It’s surprising, isn’t it, but yes it was my very first time. Almost every single day I spent, in the last one week in Dar es salaam was by asking each and every person (obviously close friends and relatives) via text(s), electronic mail(s) or phone call(s) how to go about and their experience at the airport.

The day arrived with excitement and anxiety to its high peak, now at the Airport waiting to check in, I meet a friend whom I rarely know, and had a conversation with her and family, I was relieved knowing someone is there. After the formalities, we sat in the lounge together waiting for the final check in and luckily I meet two other friends of mine who were coming to Malaysia, Indeed am I a lucky girl getting one of the amazing company to travel, Not showing how nervous I was, we talked and laughed out till the time the flight took off.

When we reach the first transit that is Doha, after seven hours of flight, exhausted, we all meet up and had dinner together. A personal challenge arises that very time, instead of climbing up the stair case I had to use an escalator, never in my entire life had I used one of these, funny isn’t it, but true. The very first friend whom I had met at the airport gives me the courage saying you can do it, if not here how you will use them in Malaysia as every developing country has many of these. I was like alright, I’ll give it a try, holding her hands I step between the two yellow lines, as It went up, the adrenaline gland started pumping more of the blood and I shouted “MOMMY”, the airport being small, everyone started staring at me, indeed an embarrassing moment that was, but nevertheless I did it, and was way too happy to notice the embarrassment.

After another eight hours flight, I reach the destination Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA), having a thought in mind, the university advisor is at the immigration waiting for me. As I reach the immigration area, I see no one there holding name of mine, worried but confidently thinking of the next step, before I left Dar es salaam, the person in charged explained me the route on how to go about in KLIA. I start with vaccination center to go get a receipt that I am vaccine, Everyone from Africa who visit to Malaysia for any purpose has to be vaccine, else you are quarantine for a week. Waiting in the line with all other nationality, I see a man coming with a paper with my name, glad to see him, I greet and he continued with all other formalities which had to be completed.

My trip was long and tiring. When I got to my apartment, after unpacking and brushing my teeth, I went straight to sleep. At 12am I hear a loud noise, someone shouting in a language I don’t understand and at the same time banging the door. I woke up and went to open the main door, slowly I press the door knob to unlock and I see a girl, “pheww...” It was my house mate who had forgotten her keys in the car, and she saw a padlock closed differently thus she banged loud; it scared me to death for an instance. The university life was way very different from high school or college where I completed my Advance Diploma, more than 50 students in one class, nervous but content that I have a good friend with me from hometown.

The orientation went well as well as introduction to all other staffs and students and we also played some games which made all the new students feel comfortable. The event rolled on, the first few weeks in class and so much is accumulated in terms of test, assignments given and deadlines to meet as well as presentations and other social activities outside class. I had a week from these few weeks to submit two assignments, write three quiz papers, and also present on the thesis I had made whilst coding the program, not to forget at this period of time a cup of coffee and a can of red bull are your best of support, in other words your very best friend and to content myself, I usually would call my mom and complain to her, and the call simply makes wonder and am through with the work.

Nonetheless, how busy was I depended on what I did, apart from studies and extra circular activities, I did not miss the opportunity to visit the tourist attraction sites and of course shopping like no one’s business, I took full advantage of my free time.

I usually tend to miss my family, my community and the cultural; Lucky as I was before, here in Malaysia there is one family who really takes care of me and other students from abroad. We have lectures once a week and also on the big days as well as we get home food and at times “BUNKUS” food (meaning take away food) that you eat little by little until the very next week.

Nevertheless, studying abroad is one of the most amazing things to do; keep that in your notes of “101 things to do before you pass out”. At this moment I can tell how much I am going to miss this challenging life and its surroundings; I am currently completing the last two subject of my bachelor’s degree. University life being so challenging, you get an exposure to various cultures and surroundings and also different people from all walks of life, and you really can’t turn your face and walk away, because it could be your house mate, your professor. It is this very period where you make your own decisions, either to stand up for yourself or to give up. The main key at this point is to be strong in all aspects and not forgetting to make most of it which is impossible to one self. Last but not the least; I would like to end up my lines with saying “"How puzzling all these changes are. I'm never sure what I'm going to be from one minute to another." (Carroll, 1865, p. 77) “And do not forget to have FUN :o)

All the Best!!

Rukaiya B.Abdulkarim

Bachelors of Information Technology

Taylors University College 2010

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