It has always been a lifelong dream to travel the world and experience cultures different from mine. Well that dream became a reality when the State Department decided to present me with the opportunity of a lifetime. I came to the United State of America with unfulfilled desires and personal aspirations. For once I was going to live the dream and be better than I was in my country. The ten months I have stayed has been the best months ever. I’m going to categorise my best moments.
Studying in NOVA
I had the opportunity to be taught by amazing professors and friendly course mates. It was a bittersweet experience for me. The professors made sure we had presentations all the time. You can imagine how I fumbled while standing infront of my mates but after sometime I overcame my shyness and fear of crowd. I mastered the art of speaking to a large number of people and actually getting them to understand me. I can proudly say my fear of crowd is a thing of the past now. Get me an audience and a podium and I will make them believers of my confidence.
Pathways to Success Program
I got the opportunity to meet all the CCI participants and made new friends as well. What made this program much memorable was when I located all my friends from GHANA . We hugged amidst laughter and hugs . Telling each other stories from our respective states and teasing one another. Our tour of the white house ,empire state , statue of liberty amongst others will forever be imprinted on my mind. If I were to do it all over again, I wouldn’t change any aspect of it.
Special friendships I made
A friend is someone who sees the white speck in you even when the whole world sees only black. It takes some people years to build friendship while others find finds withing a twinkle of an eye. I must say I made friends with all my CCI participants in virginia , my house mates and the one friendship that stands out the most is the one I made with Nabila Akter from Bangladesh. I don’t no how exactly we became friends but she made my days very interesting and infected me with her love for adventure. Not a day goes by without me calling on her to accompany me to this place and that place. She is just amazing. Words cannot describe how content I am to be her friend. Like I said it takes some people years to build friendships but mine took just ten months .
Experience that stands out
I enjoyed every moment I spent in the US but I will say the best one was when my coordinators Kelly and Jaclyn organised a trip to Virginia Beach. I explored so many things from the adventure park to the Busch gardens. I got to know my weaknesses and strengths . And for the first time I swam in the sea and the pool. Even though it was the last adventure we took as a group,it was worth it .
Post written by Sandra Appiah, CCI participant at NOVA, 2015-17, Ghana