Pandemic makes UAE students rethink academic priorities - GulfToday

Pandemic makes UAE students rethink academic priorities


Two Emirati boys study on a tablet. File/ WAM

Niloufar Saleem, Staff Reporter

Amid the coronavirus pandemic, students in the UAE have taken utmost advantage of the fact that they don’t have regular school and that most exams have been called off.

Especially those students in higher classes, for whom these exams would have been a life changer.

Many Indian syllabus schools have students puzzled and parents somewhat rattled for the opportunity that looks kind of bleak to get their children into esteemed universities, which would have been decided based on the marks they scored under normal circumstances.

But now everything has changed. Exams will no longer be the challenge they look forward to, to let students knock on the door of success.

Education A group of students fill up forms at an education fair. File

Like they say, every cloud has a silver lining and this cloud is everything silver, especially for the absolutely enthusiastic students in the UAE, who haven’t let the fact that numbers and scores wont decide their future anymore, matter to them.

They continue to strive towards climbing the ladder of success, against all odds.

To capture the delightful and hardworking spirit of the students, Gulf Today interviewed a few young and enthusiastic students studying in the UAE, to know what they think about the current situation, and how they plan to work towards building their future, without letting the current scenario affect them negatively.

Saifuddin Farooqi, a young student in the UAE and an absolutely enthusiastic lad, all of 17, shared how he manages his time efficiently amid the lockdown scenario, without letting the paranoia in the air, regarding not having exams to prove his ability for university, affect him.

saif11 Saifuddin Farooqi.

“Due to the lockdown we have had online classes that’ve taken place to help us cope up with the leftover portion that we had to complete before our exams this year and since the exams didn’t take place we had plenty of revision and online assignments that we did.

“It also gave us time to reach out to career counsellors and plan out which courses to go for and the various universities we can apply to.

I’m also using this time to do online courses that are helpful to my application.

“I’ve also gone through many university websites to see which ones are the best for the course I’m planning to go for.

“We were impressed with the vision and goal and the steps taken by the youngster, at such a young age, to look at the brighter side of the situation.

nik11 Nikhil Nalawangsa.

“On the other hand 18-year-old Nikhil Nalawangsa, a student in one of the UAE’s schools. shed some light on how he is trying to explore the different areas of his interest, so that he doesn’t waste time and makes sure he is choosing the right career path for himself.

“I attended online webinars in which I got an indepth and detailed information of the career paths I’m interested in and about the universities that provide the courses.

“I’m looking forward to trying to explore my opportunities in different fields, so I don’t regret taking any decision in the future.”


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We absolutely agreed with Nikhil’s method of thinking well before he takes a decision.

A wise way to spend the time indeed.

The beautiful teen Uzma, a 17-year-old student from the UAE, gave us an absolutely different perspective of the situation.

She shared how the lockdown and free time helped her relax and unwind, which in turn made her realise how to choose a path that would make her happy and content.

“When we are under pressure, we can’t think clearly, and this time, since we didn’t have the exams, it helped us take the responsibility of choosing what we want to do very carefully.

Uzma Uzma.

“We had to choose our field of expertise, without letting the marks speak for themselves. It felt good not having the pressure to prove ourselves with marks, but now we can work on what we love the most, instead.”

It’s true they say, everything happens for good. We can’t say that about the pandemic, but maybe the fact that it has made most of us introspect and look at alternate ways to face life, just spreads so much positivity amidst the whole gloomy scenario.

Here’s wishing all the students in the UAE and around the globe, all the luck in the world, to face every curve ball coming towards them with absolute confidence and faith, and to never stop striving towards a greater and bigger future.

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