Nepalese student Cyrus Raj Gautam ‘22 talks about how losing a full scholarship to University of Texas at Tyler ended up making his dreams come true at Quest.

Tell us what happened with your scholarship to University of Texas at Tyler.

I chose to apply to UT Tyler because I knew someone studying there. I had high SAT scores, so I knew I could probably get a scholarship. As soon as I got my marks, I applied, and two weeks later I got an email telling me I had a full scholarship that would pay for everything except my health care.

I was so excited! I told everyone I knew. Then I got an email saying that it was a mistake, and they were revoking the scholarship.

You weren’t the only Nepalese student that this happened to, right?

They gave and then revoked scholarships for 60 students from Nepal. They said they had given more scholarships than they’d budgeted for.

That must have been very disappointing for you.

I was devastated. And worse, I had to go around and explain to all my family and everyone that I wasn’t going to UT Tyler now, and had lost the scholarship. I was so depressed.

How did you end up at Quest?

USEF Nepal, a group that deals with educational exchanges, contacted Ms. Joan Liu from UWCSEA Singapore, and she started this great movement to place every student in good universities. I had to submit a profile, which universities look at to see if students are a good fit. I joined the group a bit late, and they had already approached US colleges. By the time I started, the group was beginning to speak with Canadian universities.

Quest thought I would be a good fit, so I was offered the Presidential Scholarship and additional financial aid.

How did you feel about coming to Canada to study?

I was so happy and so excited. It was my dream to study in Canada, and Quest made it come true. I had already been thinking I wanted to do my Master’s in Canada.

How do you like it here so far?

In Nepal, we don’t usually talk to strangers. But I’ve found here everyone smiles at you and talks to you, even if they don’t know you. It took some time, but I’m getting used to it now. I really like it here at Quest!

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