There is no better thrill, no better sense of fulfillment, in the world than to be recognized as the creme de la creme of your academic lot. First, it was an induction to the Golden Key International Honor Society, then the Alpha Chi National College Honor Society, and now at the brink of my graduation I have been awarded an academic excellence award. I have made it to the President's List 2014 (Graduate) for a 4.0 Cumulative GPA. Dr. Michael Plater is the Strayer Univerity President and it is his list that I have made it to!
It has always been about academic excellence for me, apart from my adventures. Being born to parents who have been on honor roll students of their own era is serious responsibility. There has never been pressure though, but there is something called living up to the expectations. It is a zeal to achieve in life the exact same academic peak that they once reached. It just makes me feel worthy of being their kid. Getting a Masters degree has been a long sought dream, and being recognized for my hard work has been my ultimate wish.
It is never easy, as Campus Dean Dr. Twila Lindsay said, and there are always stones, boulders, and mountains in the way. There have been circumstances when I felt that I should just give up the idea of an MBA degree altogether until I found StrayerU. As a grad student, it took me 2 years which I feel is longer than usual. But, I was able to work on other business projects on the way so I do not feel that I was in an embryonic phase where my working self was in hiding until I walked the stage on my commencement. There were very few people who believed in me, my efforts, and that the degree could actually do me good. It is unfortunate that not all people recognize the importance of a Master's degree, particularly in a woman's life.
So, it took a hardcore attitude of a rockstar to keep my head high and keep going. I had decided that my academic tenure at Strayer would be nothing like my undergrad years where I compromised a lot of other important things in life - like giving time to my family. StrayerU's brilliant program gave me time for everything without disconnecting me from planet earth. So, as I worked my fingers to the bone, I was still driving Mom out for shopping, driving Sara around for her own academic excellence works, and running household errands. They say when you get your car in a Desi family, you become the family's chauffeur and the grocery delivery lady.
The ceremony was a boon for me because it has been a while since an academic institution recognized my efforts. I remember walking out of my undergrad business school in my home city, Karachi, with a 3.9 CGPA and no commencement, no certificates of appreciation. It was heart-warming to have my hand shaken, my back patted, and my self hugged by the Campus Dean Dr. Twila Lindsay. One thing is certain, I am not going to forget this lady.