Tuesday, December 23, 2014

How Studying Abroad Can Change the World: Essay Contest Winners, Part 3

Earlier this year, WES Student Advisor asked readers for submissions for our 2014 Essay Contest. The prompt was inspired by a Nelson Mandela quote -- "Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world" -- and it asked readers to describe how studying abroad can help change the world.

This month, we shared with you two of the winning entries. Now, in the third part of a five-part series, we're showcasing another one of the winners: a piece by Jasmeet Singh, who gives a transcendental take on why she wants to study social psychology in the United States.

"Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world."

As they say, the pen is mightier than the sword. Education is about not only imparting theoretical knowledge but also retaining life skills, promoting peace, and eradicating poverty and deprivation. The worst form of poverty is a lack of education; it restricts an individual from progressing fiscally as well as in terms of thinking, personal achievement, and moving beyond the ego toward a higher existence and an expansion of consciousness.

I firmly believe that studying abroad will help me to master my skills and also achieve my goal of helping people deal with the stress and monotony of modern life so they can maintain equilibrium between their personal and professional selves.

My aim is to become a social psychologist. I am intrigued by how the behavior of an individual is influenced by the situations and circumstances in which he or she has been placed. In today’s fast-paced world, people have lost touch with nature and don’t have time for the pleasure of reflection. I want to help people strike a balance between the creative and the commercial. I believe that studying in the U.S. will help me achieve my goal because, after all, it is the hegemonic power in the world; due to cultural homogenization, we are all moving toward a uniform American culture, and the world has shrunk into a global village. Being exposed to American culture will help me understand how Americans lead their lives in a holistic manner and how they achieve their goals and contribute to society. The U.S. is a hub for professionals from nearly every field from all parts of the world. I feel the opportunity to live in such a global atmosphere can be gained only in the U.S. and not in any other part of the world.

The country offers many opportunities to grow in professional terms and also by learning what you love. I am a strong believer in the virtues of the U.S. education system. I will receive a vast practical exposure there that will enrich my knowledge and better my thoughts.

In my opinion, peace is not confined to the absence of wars or international conflicts. I believe that peace means achieving a tranquil state of mind and harmony with others, society, and nature; it is inter-personally distributed and therefore requires the contribution of all individuals. Studying in the U.S. will surely help me because the magnanimous power and influence of the country would help me to spread my voice to the furthest corners of the world.

-Jasmeet Singh
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Congratulations to all our 2014 Essay Contest winners, and thanks to everyone who participated!

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