REF: EB/SH/10/18                                                   

Inspiration for Aspiration – Sharing Student Stories

I, Nargis Dewji, daughter of Pyarali and Zaheda Dewji, am a final year BComm student at NUI Galway from Dar es Salaam, Tanzania majoring in Economics. I was shortlisted for the Union of students in Ireland (USI) International Student of the Year Award and Alhamdulillah took the award home on the 19th of April 2018.

After studying a semester of B. Nursing in Malaysia and Business Administration in London, I wanted a degree that offered me more areas for specialization and the BComm at NUI Galway offered this. I picked the university because it was different to me. I had never experienced living in a smaller city and wanted something different from London. I believe this was the best decision I ever made. There are so many opportunities and things to do in Ireland. Also after visiting UK, USA and Malaysia, it was a dream to complete my studies and work in Ireland.

My favorite thing about studying in Ireland is the culture. When I travel, I always pick different countries to visit so that I get to experience various cultures. I suppose this helps me adapt quickly in places where the culture is different. Ireland has been so supportive, and if you tell people about what you want to do, they want to help you, and push you to achieve what you want. There are huge opportunities here in many different areas including courses, societies and jobs. Also, NUI Galway has given me a great student experience during my time here.
 
For me, it all really started in second year of my course. I was shy and reserved in terms of social skills. My involvement on campus was encouraged by my lecturer when I approached her regarding international students on campus. I got the opportunity to contribute at the Strategic Analysis Workshop for improving student experience at NUI Galway and advocated for diversity, international student’s inclusion and engagement on NUI Galway campus. I began to take part in volunteering and societies and worked my way up.

I volunteered in many programs, and got certified in a Mental Health and Well Being program. I started as an External Officer and then became Vice Auditor of the Finance Society as well as Team Leader for events at Blackstone Launchpad. I just started grabbing opportunities as they came and that improved my skillset. I worked with the Bank of Ireland for selected events and with the International Office to represent NUI Galway as the International Student Ambassador. I also volunteered to become a Class Representative for Macroeconomics in BComm. During my summer, I was invited to Ernst and Young (EY) Dublin for a Leadership Program where I was put in randomly selected teams to solve a case study challenge and present in front of judges. It was a great win. I saw myself developing personally, taking part in various activities and engaging with both international and local students and all of this contributed greatly to my social skills.  I made good friends and as an active person on and off campus, I balanced social life, work, volunteering and maintained a first class honors in my studies. 

I was surprised, yet delighted to win the International Student of the Year Award. All that I have done is for my parents and I am so happy that they are proud, happy and excited. That means a lot for me. I learnt a lot and experienced different things from the time I came to Ireland to where I have now reached. It definitely is not easy staying away from family, but the fact that my parents work so hard for me to get the best motivates me to do well and make them happy every day!

The AFED Education Board is very pleased to report this success story from Nargis P. Dewji, one of the many students pursuing higher education in overseas Universities and Colleges. We wish Nargis every success and look forward to hear more achievements. We are delighted to note of her quest to learn and gain more experience in her academic career and work – Well done, keep it up.
  
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