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Getting Exposed To Many Cultures

Getting exposed to many cultures

Ankita Choudhari, 21, from Hyderabad in southern India, wanted to learn about business in an international setting and to be exposed to different cultures while studying. But first, she needed a diploma to qualify.

So, after her International Baccalaureate diploma programme in her hometown, Ankita (picture) came to Singapore in 2009 to study for a 15-month Diploma in Management Studies conducted by the Singapore Institute of Management (SIM).

“The diploma course gave me a solid grounding in management theory and practice. This diploma enabled me to get into the University of Birmingham’s BSc (Hons) programme in International Business, also conducted at SIM’s campus in Singapore. Now I’m in my final-year (2012).”

She chose SIM because she could experience the Singapore culture while getting the benefits of a first-class education from Birmingham.

“During my studies, I even travelled to Birmingham in the UK for a semester (covering 4-5 months). I am also applying for the university’s overseas programme to study for a semester in France in my final year (2012). With this arrangement, I’m effectively immersing myself in three different cultural environments – Singapore, the UK and France!”

Enjoy Singapore

On life in the island state, she says, “In Singapore, I enjoy the swing and tempo of a highly-developed urban society. Although I’m a vegetarian, I've seldom faced a problem with culinary options due to the variety of cuisines available. The weather is hot and wet, which is different from the relatively dry climate in my hometown, Hyderabad, but I’m quite comfortable here.

“I stay in the hostel provided by SIM – the place is safe and is near to the campus. I enjoy the freedom of hostel life and doing things at my own pace. It has helped me become more independent and self-reliant. My parents also visit me regularly every six months.”

Although Singapore as a developed urban society can be stressful at times, both Gayathiri and Ankita are coping well, and having a whale of a time, studying, making friends, and absorbing the local cultures.

Align your education to your career aspiration

Ankita’s advice to other young people considering an overseas tertiary education: “I would encourage young people who want to get a solid, professional education to follow the study route I’ve taken: first, sign up for a Diploma course to achieve the academic qualification to enter university.

“Then choose a university degree programme that would fulfill your career aspiration. SIM Global Education is the way to bring out the best in you.”

Ankita looks forward to working with an NGO (non-governmental organisation) in India. “I want more than money in my job,” she says. “I want to work for a cause, to help make the world a little better than when I found it.”

– Interview, October 2012