Disclaimer: This post is produced right off the confirmation that the writer received regarding his summer abroad application. A great deal of excitement and exclamation marks, uncommon in the writer’s style of writing, would be evident in this piece. Reader’s discretion is advised!
I never expected that HKU would nominate me for a second exchange. The reason why I call it a second exchange is because unlike other summer programmes, the one at Cambridge probably lasts the longest- for eight weeks during which I can not only take two courses from my field of study but also work on producing a dissertation under the supervision of a Cambridge professor! That means, including my twenty-two weeks at UCLA, by the end of next summer I would have in fact spent more than two semesters on exchange. Well, these justifications are for the most skeptic individuals who think summer programmes don’t count as exchange. What’s more important is that I am going to Cambridge!!!
I don’t know why reading the confirmation email on my nomination immediately reminded me of my humble upbringing. Growing up in a middle-class family in India and going to definitely not the top [read famous!] schools in town, life back there in Delhi was pretty mediocre- eat, sleep, pray and read; however, the past three years’ have been as exciting as the second half of the movie Deer Hunter (1978) lol! Leaving home at eighteen and from there so many interesting set pieces, one more exciting than the other, imprinted on the roll film of my identity. In my prayers, I always ask God do I deserve so many of such happy moments from going to Thailand to teach English to spending half a year in LA and now this opportunity to read at Cambridge!
Well, this post is not only about me and my feelings but also intends to be informational in nature. I highly encourage both current and prospective students to HKU to check out the summer exchange programmes that HKU has to offer at http://www.aal.hku.hk/summerinstitute/ because there are some great universities like Cambridge, Columbia and Stanford on list who have semester-equivalent programmes during summer. Some of my friends also transfer the units earned from taking some courses at the host institute during summer back to HKU. Although I don’t really require to do so (courtesy to the units gained from doing 10 courses at UCLA!) yet I hope I will be able to pool the units earned for the course on Metaphysics and Philosophy of Mind as an elective for Cognitive Science. Such opportunities are for those who would like to have a productive summer and to me what better way to describe my plan for the upcoming summer- going to Cambridge for a semester <3