‘Beyond my imagination’: Srinagar teen bags $70,000 scholarship to Qatar university


When Sringar-based faculty scholar Maleeha Zehra accomplished her class 10 examinations two years in the past, she was confronted with the age-old conundrum of choosing a stream in highschool — a frightening selection, which on the time felt make-or-break. Her coronary heart was set on finding out political science, however she knew her determination to choose humanities within the eleventh and twelfth could be met with some quantity of skepticism. Despite preliminary objections from well-meaning kinfolk, Maleeha pressed forward with one objective in thoughts — to review worldwide relations in a international college.

Two years later, Maleeha’s gamble paid off. Late final month, the Class 12 scholar from Delhi Public School, Srinagar acquired an e mail informing her that she had bagged a $70,000 (over Rs 51 lakh) full-ride scholarship to review on the prestigious Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service in Qatar.

“I am on cloud nine. This is beyond my imagination — everything that I am feeling and everything that is happening,” a jubilant Maleeha advised indianexpress.com. “My parents and everyone in my family are happy. People who I haven’t been in touch with for years are now calling and congratulating me.”

But Maleeha’s journey to her dream undergraduate programme hasn’t been fully easy crusing. Following the abrogation of the particular standing of Jammu and Kashmir and conversion of the erstwhile state into two Union Territories in 2019, 4G web providers had been shut down within the state and a lockdown was imposed. Maleeha was in Class 11 on the time. “That year I couldn’t do much in terms of my applications,” she recalled.

Then the coronavirus pandemic struck, and her purposes had been placed on the again burner but once more. “Thankfully my grades and an exchange programme in Brazil I went on in 2018 all added to my application. But it was a very tricky and challenging year for me,” Maleeha mentioned.

Despite the challenges, her counsellors and lecturers stood by her each step of the best way. “One teacher in particular, Shazia Fida, was like my rock. She was my class teacher in Class 10 and the activity-in-charge at DPS,” she defined.

According to DPS Srinagar chairman Vijay Dhar, the varsity has an extended historical past of sending college students to among the world’s greatest universities. “Maleeha did a great job working her way through the last couple of years to get the scholarship that she wanted,” Dhar mentioned. “The school has been doing this for many years. We have a couple of students in Stanford on full scholarship too.”

With Class 12 boards postponed indefinitely and nations internationally imposing recent journey restrictions on flights arriving from India, the coronavirus pandemic has thrown yet one more spanner within the works for Maleeha. “There is a lot of uncertainty. I’m a bit worried about whether everything will happen on time.”

The teen has additionally determined to carry off celebrations till the second wave of the pandemic tapers off and circumstances start to drop.