Ms. Debbie, 16 Year Old student in Eastern Mediterranean University[EMU] writes on 'STRIVING'

“My name is Debbie. I am a female, 16 years and just left the territory of my ‘disciplinarian and strict’ parent to be an undergraduate outside my country.

While under my parents’ supervision, I was not allowed to have any male friends, even my female friends were not comfortable being with me when my parents’ terrorizing eyes are judgmental. I am not allowed to be free, mingle with my friends, and wear clothes in vogue. A lot was not going down well with me while I was with my parents, now I have the freedom I have always dreamed of.

My decision while leaving the shores of my country is to maximize my freedom to the fullest! I will go clubbing, have as many friends as possible, wear skimpy clothes, attend lectures if it does not clash with my agenda to mention a few”.

In most cases, this is usually the decision of every teenager leaving his or her parents which is always because of their experiences and level of discipline imposed by their parents. This is however a wrong mindset or decision to take. Most times, we fail to understand that everything our parents do or say is for us to become better persons in life. Many a times, we see and appreciate their efforts as we get older.

Even though you are currently in a department that is not of your choice; either because your parents decided for you or you are placed there by the school, you should strive to be the best. Our parents as investors, expects returns on every investment especially a long term investment like us, so we owe it to them to give our best to all we do in school. I will like to state few ways in which we can achieve academic excellence and also having a balanced like. Here are the few:

Let God be your guide: the first thing we need to do it to have God as our pathfinder. Trust him to always guide you in your daily affairs, in the friends you choose, etc. this can never be over emphasized.

Your resolution: Make a strong resolve to be the best in your class or department by
Stop procrastinating. Get your work done on time and before deadlines. You’ll probably find you eliminate quite a bit of stress in your life!

Give it 110%. You may already be submitting excellent coursework and studying hard for each of your classes.  Try putting just a little extra effort towards one class or project.

Don’t do it all. It’s better to concentrate on a few things and excel in them than if you join every committee, activity and club that you can cram into your schedule.

Banish the self-doubt. Doubting your own abilities only holds you back from achieving what you want to achieve. Just say no to negative thoughts!

Adopt a positive mantra. Repeat after me: I think I can, I think I can, I think I can.  You’ll be amazed what you can accomplish just by telling yourself that it is possible!

Reach out to others. Look to others in your classes for help when you need it.  If you didn’t understand a lecture, perhaps your classmate can explain it in a different way that makes sense to you.  And in turn, you may be able to help other students down the road.  Together Everyone Achieves M

Social Life: All work and no play is just no fun at all. Even if you just assign one or two nights a week to “Play time,” do it. You can go to a movie, buy tickets to a show, attend a party, go for a hike or visit your parents. The key is to do something just for the fun of it. It’s necessary to release some of the stress of the week by finding something enjoyable to do to blow off some steam. You may be pleasantly surprised at how refreshed you feel after some innocent shenanigans with an old buddy or a nice belly laugh at a comedy club.

Take some “Me Time.” You are likely working, studying, and trying to be a good friend or family member all at the same time.  That’s hard work!  Carve out a little time each month to do something positive for yourself.  You are working hard, reward yourself for a job well done.

I hope putting in place these few things will help you achieve your academic goal and live a balance life which will bring satisfaction to you and joy to your parents.

*Originally published on TAIWOELUWOLE BLOG


  1. nice article. need more of this that talks about challenges youths are facing

  2. Exactly what majority of international students are facing. thanks for this write-up. We need more of this


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