Overseas Indian Student Network, 20 Questions - Meet Krishna...

Krishna is 20, he currently resides in Macon, Georgia. Krishna is in the process of earning his Bachelor's Degree in Communication at Mercer University, GA.
Published - May 2002

1. What is the prime reason for your studying outside India?
The system..I think the American system of education makes a lot more sense...
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2. How does studying overseas compare to the quality of education in India?
I would say it is definitely better in certain aspects....but not all...India still has its plus points.

3. What do you like most about your education overseas?
The relevance...definitely...you learn stuff that you would actually put to use in your career...

4. What do you miss the most from your schooling in India?
I think bunking classes....attendance policies are very strict in US colleges...

5. Will your current education be relevant back in India?
Definitely....it would be more than relevant as being outside your country helps you to lose the frog-in-the-well perspective and gain a more balanced view of life in general.

6. If you were in a position of authority, what would you change in India's system of education?
India needs to get rid of irrelevant subject matter from its curriculum....the British raj designed our system to produce clerks....and unfortunately we haven't made any impressive changes... Also, student's need more flexibility and time to choose their career paths....tenth grade is too early to decide.

7. Had you travelled overseas before coming to study?

8. What was your biggest cultural shock in your new environment?
Boy thats a long list...but I guess homosexuality and the absence of a system of moral ethics were the toppers

9. How many times have you gone back to India
Haven't been back yet....

10. 10. How do you cope with homesickness?
Good question...my list of escape measures include prowling thru alumni sites, stalking down my seniors from high school on the net and eating Indian food.

11. What struck you most on your first return to India?
Have not been there yet...but am bracing for reverse culture shock.

12. Did you find the Indian student community supportive while settling in the country?
Do not have too many Indian students here...but the ones that were around were extremely helpful...

13. How much do you interact with other foreign students?
All the time....Have more Jamaican pals than Indian ones;)

14. What are some of the most interesting (funny) observations others have made about India?
This one's the best...
"Do they have skyscrapers in India?"
And people really freak out when I tell them I am going to have an arranged marriage...

15. What is the most amusing gaffe (social blunder) you made while in this new environment?
Was trying to familiarize myself with using a knife and a fork...and launched some rice off my plate into the air... It landed on a girl's shoulder...she said,"Thanks for sharing"..

16. How do you find the social life in your university?
Social life is what you make of it...If you are a party animal, then my university would be more or less a graveyard for you...

17. Have you ever felt discriminated or slighted for being an Indian?
I am yet to have that...but I guess things have changed a lot for the worse since September 11

18. Where do you usually eat? How have you adjusted to the absence of spicy Indian cuisine?
I don't eat out too much....the cafeteria serves food superbland....but it beats having to get up and cook every morning before u rush to classes

19. Do you plan to return to India for good?
Definitely, there are no two ways about that...

20. A message for fellow Overseas Indian students..
The United States is a land that will provide you with every tool to make the best out of yourself, but it also has everything to totally destroy the best that you strive to be.

- Krishna in Macon, Georgia, USA

The views of this column are the author's own, and do not necessarily represent the views of OIS-NET.

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