By Arjun Singh

21 January 2021 - 10:00

Arjun arriving at Cranfield University.

Growing up in a small village in India, Arjun dreamt of studying in the UK. It took years to gain the skills needed for his course, but with hardwork and some guidance from a friend, he was accepted onto a master’s course in Advanced Water Management at Cranfield University with a GREAT scholarship. Below Arjun shares his story and reminds us that the sky is the limit. 

‘I wanted to contribute to the development of local communities’.

I am from Dhana Teja, a small village in India, and my plans to pursue postgraduate studies abroad started in 2017 because I wanted to contribute to the development of local communities. I would like to improve the water quality in my village and reduce the number of people suffering from nephrolithiasis.  

 ‘I choose to apply to UK universities after considering the quality and duration of the courses, along with the language of the country’.

I choose to apply to UK universities after considering the quality and duration of the courses, along with the language of the country. Although I was able to secure offers from seven out of ten universities in the UK, the main challenge for me was the cost to attend. I could not accept an offer due to a lack of funding. 

‘I strengthened my profile and gained the necessary skills’.

Over the next two years, I strengthened my profile and gained the necessary skills. A friend played a significant role in guiding me through the key documents needed for my application, and in 2019, I applied to study a master’s in Advanced Water Management at Cranfield University with a GREAT scholarship. A few weeks later, I received an email from the University and I had been selected. I was on cloud nine!

‘I thought that it would be hard quarantining in a new country, but my landlady and housemate made me very comfortable’.

I came to the UK in September 2020. Due to Covid-19, I had to quarantine for fourteen days. I thought that it would be hard quarantining in a new country, but my landlady and housemate made me very comfortable by providing all the resources. During isolation, I kept myself active and busy by talking to my friends and family online. 

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Arjun cycling in his local park.

‘I had a good experience meeting new people and making friends online…. joining the University’s societies, Facebook page and WhatsApp groups helped me to connect with people’.

Because of Covid-19, my fresher’s week (induction) was also virtual. I had a good experience meeting new people and making friends online. Lots of information is provided about the University and the different cultural events on the University’s Facebook page. Socieites conduct tea and coffee meetings too, which helped me make friends. I have also connected with some PhD students who studied my course. Joining the University’s societies, Facebook page and WhatsApp groups helped me to connect with people. I quickly picked up the local culture and adjusted to the weather. 

‘Talking to friends and family helps me reduce stress and keep working hard to achieve what I came to the UK for’.

Keeping ourselves motivated to study online during the pandemic is very important. I keep motivated by cycling and doing some bodyweight exercises, while talking to friends and family helps me reduce stress and keep working hard to achieve what I came to the UK for. I am very thankful for the GREAT scholarship, without which I would have been not able to afford higher education costs. Moreover, the scholarship helped me gain confidence and motivated me to give back to society. 

‘Young children from my village have started to believe that they too can attend the UK for higher studies’.

Young children from my village have started to believe that they too can attend the UK for higher studies. I am ecstatic that my selection created a sense of belief for them. Since arriving in the UK, I have received many calls from students in my village back in India who enquire about the application process. This is when I realised the importance of having a person who can guide you to reach your goals. I am lucky to have had that guidance from my friend. To give back to society, my friend and I have started a free consultation service for students who want to pursue higher education in the UK. Using our first-hand experience, we can guide you through the admission and scholarship processes. We are here to help and guide as many students as possible. The sky is the limit!