When it comes to NUS, its academic standard is what most people fear, or to those who like challenges (like me), embrace. I was so flabbergasted both when I'm offered a scholarship to read Pharmacy (My first pick) and not being offered the same course in Malaysia, despite being one of the top students in Malaysia. Anyway, I've chosen this route that lead me to this foreign land and I'm proud to say that I LOVE IT!!!!
Speaking about academia, there will be expectations - from oneself, from family, from friends. One of my aims that I set before I came to NUS, as I could recall, was to graduate with First Class Honours. Even though I have been advised by my seniors here not to put on high hopes as the environment here in NUS is very competitive, I've still decided strive for the highest. To me, I feel that it's not worth all my effort (and my parents money) if I couldn't achieve that.
However, with my current CAP of 3.9 (over 5.0), my dream is pretty much far-fetched!!! Whether I could succeed in achieving my dream by the time I graduate is still an unknown. But, I do believe the low CAP was due to the fact that I'm adapting to the new and stressful environment here. I have a history of slow adaptation back in Secondary School and Form Six. Hopefully after going through Sem 1, hopefully I'll do better in Sem 2.
As I said before, there will be expectations from people around you as well. Being labeled as one of the top students in Malaysia, a scholar and a Pharmacy Undergraduate, it simply means higher expectations on me. People look onto me as if I'm some genius of some sort.... That what I achieved was not what any mortal could... But to me, I'm just a simple human and everyone else...
A question and a statement statement stroke me quite hard early in Sem 2 (sorry I have to incorporate Sem 2, but it's connected):
1) As I revealed my CAP to Jason Kong (Business Year 2 senior, very nice person), he told me that he expected me to get more than that, around 4.3.
2) In another occasion, as someone revealed that I am a scholar, Jin (Chemical Engineering Year 1 friend, hard-to-describe personality) asked me what made me different from him and entitled me for a scholarship.
Sometimes, it's pretty hard to keep up with expectations, especially when there are tonnes of them from others. To meet every single one of the expectations may be impossible, and it'll be a very intense and tiring process. But all that I could do is to give in my all, then pray that all my effort is enough in return for what I deserve, and not regret any of it.
You can pray for anything,
and if you believe you've received it,
it will be yours.