Ankita Vyas MBA graduate(University of Technology, Sydney). Currently working in the USA.
Hi! Please tell us a little bit about yourself
I was born & raised in a city named Baroda, Gujarat, India. I went to Sardar Patel University for my under grad and Masters. I come from a business family so marketing was always my focus. I enjoyed travelling from a very young age. I am a very extrovert, proactive person and a planner by nature. At 20, like every other young person I was lost but I knew I wanted to travel the world. Now, if I did an average MBA and worked in India, that dream was never going to be fulfilled unless I turned 50 years old. I knew my goal but had to find out the journey towards it.
What attracted you to the University you studied, and what made you decide to apply to study abroad?
From a long time I knew I wanted to leave India and explore other countries. I really wanted to travel and meet people from different culture. I had reached out to Urvi from Planet Education a year before I actually left. It was to gather the basic information, do the ground work, the preliminary research and arrange all the paper work. I was attracted to University of Technology Sydney for multiple practical reasons like the duration of my MBA, the requirements for it, fees and the advantage of studying in the heart of world’s largest cities in the world. I had options from Canada, USA & Australia but I chose Australia because of the long term opportunity of a permanent visa, clarity of information I received from Planet team. Also, UTS was visiting India then in 2012 and I had personally met the representatives which made the choice even more clear for me.
Have you faced any challenges?
Whenever we step out of our comfort zone, we face challenges which shape us & create this improvised version of own selves. I faced challenges of figuring out the work culture, communication pattern, when & how to travel in a new country, how the government works, how to figure out the banking and visa situations, how to go house hunting in a new country wherein you know no one. These challenges helped me carve out a better version of myself.
Has it changed you and your life? If yes, how?
Any sort of major change in life leads to many changes. Yes, this experience definitely changed my life in many ways. I became more practical, wordly, well read & well travelled. I became more of a decision maker, a strategist, a proactive researcher, more courageous and a confident orator. I became a go-getter and let-do-it kind of a person.
Describe your experience in 3 words
Self discovery journey.
How do you spend you free time?
I spend my free time by doing volunteer work, reading fictional books, travelling to different cities in whichever country I am and networking with people.
What’s your favourite memory from this experience?
Before I left, I got this most important lesson of my life session from Urvi (Planet Education). Even today, I perfectly remember out of 1000 advises she gave me, she told me always walk with a purpose on the streets of a new street. Never look lost, even if you are. My favourite memory is when I literally was lost in Sydney while trying to find my school on my first day. I closed my eyes and heard her voice saying these words and since then have repeated these words many times in life. I did figure out how to get to my school, eventually, and whenever I am lost or walking late at night from work I remember her voice with the same guidance.
What recommendations would you give to students willing to study abroad?
We humans tend to stick with our own cultural crowd because that is safe and that is what we know. But there is a reason you are leaving India and going abroad. Make the most of this opportunity. Meet and talk to as many people as possible. Do NOT believe every stereotype you hear. Learn to form own judgement which comes from experiences. If you wish to move ahead in life learn to be self motivated. It’s important to be firm, hard working and an alert person if you want to be successful outside your comfort zone. Success has nothing to do with country or cities. Its everything to do with your attitude towards life.
Every Indian I met in Sydney always gave me this do’s & dont’s list which I never followed. If you stick to the general norms you will stay an ordinary person and have a mediocre life. To achieve something more than you have known you need to break out from these psychological boundaries and work towards the better version of yourself & your life. Believe in yourself! Be your biggest motivator and trust your instincts. Then as they say… World is your oyster!